The Armchair Gooner

An Arsenal blog bringing you news, opinion and humour on a daily basis. Well, I'll try at the very least…

Wilshere and Alexis Impress, Arsenal Draw, Ozil Gets Abuse.

Mesut greats the haters.

Morning, folks.

That was a very good game of football we witnessed yesterday. It ebbed, it flowed, chances were created, goals were scored. Had I been watching from a neutral’s perspective, I would have enjoyed it immensely.

Of course, I’m an Arsenal fan so I enjoyed certain moments of the game immeasurably, only to be left ruing blunders and avoidable concessions in others. Whilst 2-2 against a side of City’s calibre isn’t anything remotely like a terrible result, I can’t help feeling we could have gotten better. That said; City’s supporters could quite easily make the same claim, and taking everything into account a draw was a fair outcome.

By now, you’ll have all seen at least highlights of the game, read a report or have been told what happens so a brief recollection of the main events strikes me as a little pointless (I never report the game’s moments, but feel the need to explain why on occasion.). Instead, I shall discuss a few of the players that received praise/abuse.  Continue reading

Manchester City (h): Thoughts, Team News And Predicted Starting XI

“Really, Olivier? Another one?”

Morning, folks.

If you’re wondering where my usual posts have been the last couple of days, I can explain… At present, my life is a marathon run of epic proportion in which I must navigate many stress hurdles. The perils of moving home and selling a house currently is paramount amongst those. In place of my customary tripe you’ve had a few guest posts – I’m using those to fill a little space and, hopefully, give you a little enjoyment – yesterday’s post with a quiz on Arsenal’s history is worth a look.

With a bit of luck, the mayhem will relent soon and I’ll be able to get back to writing everyday properly. As things stand, Daniel and I will be taking a break from the Goonersphere Podcast for a few weeks as he’s as busy as I am with the birth of his first child.

I’m sure you’ll all understand.

Right, onto more pressing concerns and today’s fixture; the visit of free-scoring Manchester City. Continue reading

Arsenal Have Won Absolutely NOTHING Yet….

Relax. Have a yoghurt.

Morning. folks.

Sounds like a morose title. It isn’t. Think of it more as me adopting an air of caution to what I write. It is excellent that Wigan defied expectation to knock Man City out of the FA Cup and, undoubtedly, the competition is a genuinely fantastic opportunity to bag some silverware. However, that great chance at glory is going to bring with it tremendous pressure.

We all know how much the media love to build up the chances of an underdog. Coupled with how much they appear to revel in Arsenal’s failure, we can expect tension and such to be ramped up several notches in the weeks leading up to the game – think; dials being turned to ’11’. Continue reading

€8m striker on the way, Captain’s future and a big weekend of football.

David couldn’t choose what to watch from the endless stream of football.

Morning, you splendid little badgers.

You’ll be pleased to know my stomach has settled down and reached some semblance of normality today. No longer am I enduring any discomfort. Not today. In the interest of  keeping up my reputation as a f**king idiot, I shall use this reprieve to consume even further. It would be an opportunity wasted if I didn’t, wouldn’t it?

*goes downstairs to make coffee and pancakes*

Yummy.

Right, news time – time to trawl through all those sites out there and see what’s happening in the wonderful world of Arsenal. There’s a busy Premiership fixture list today. Manchester City will in all likelihood take our top spot away as they’ve a home fixture with lowly Crystal Palace. Short of something truly miraculous happening – Chamakh hat-trick anyone? – I can only see a home win, and an extremely comfortable one at that.  Having beaten Liverpool on Boxing Day, our Sky Blue rivals are building up a head of steam. Most people’s clear favourites for the title are thunderously acquiring results over Christmas. Continue reading

Man City 6-3 Arsenal: Ermmm….. Okay then. Bad day at the office.

Aaron chose an odd moment to express his feeling through the majesty of dance.

Afternoon/evening, folks.

Hmmmm.

Not entirely sure where to start today. I’m disappointed. Doubtless to say, I’m far from the only Arsenal fan feeling that way at present. Yesterday did not go as planned. Before matches, I’ve a habit of playing out scenarios in my head, kind of like a pre-match pre-visualisation. When picturing the way events would unfold, images of a hard fought and close contest were conjured in my brainbox. I did not expect 9 goals.

In the face of defeat, it’s very easy to look for a scapegoat. God only knows why, but some people feel they can ease their misery by piling as much blame onto the shoulders of one of the players.  Aaron Ramsey knows better than most how fickle fans can be when you’re going through a bad time. Olivier Giroud seems to be the latest target. Continue reading

5 reasons Arsenal can beat Man City and predicted staring XI

There was always a mad dash to the warm showers at full time.

Morning, folks.

You could argue today’s fixture is our toughest and most challenging of the season thus far. You’d certainly have a very good case, cast iron even. Man City’s home form has been nothing short of awesome so far. They’ve ripped supposedly good teams to shreds on their own turf, banging in goals for fun in the process.

To say I’m a little daunted would be an understatement. As poor as the team’s showing in Italy on Wednesday was, I don’t see it having any baring on how events unfold. The only contributing factor could be fatigue. The defeat itself shouldn’t sit heavy on the minds of the players, especially given we qualified for the next stages of the Champions League. Continue reading

Arsenal’s starting XI for the game against Manchester City (team news and preview).

Sunday Jan 13th; FA Premiership, Man City (h)

Afternoon folks.

There’s something about these ‘big’ fixtures that instills more belief in me for my team. Had we been lining up today against lower league minnows, or one of the Premiership’s so-called “lesser” teams, I’d be nervous and expecting something silly to happen. With the current title holders coming to town, my belief stems from the fact our players have a challenge to rise to, and our home support will be vociferous and constant.

The news on the playing front is very good. Only Lukas Fabianski remains on the sidelines, with Diaby and Santos both thought to have regained enough fitness in training to warrant a selection today. Only Olivier Giroud is doubtful, and he faces a late fitness test on a nasty gash suffered in last week’s FA Cup tie with Swansea.

Our team selection has been fairly consistent in recent weeks, and I expect Arsene to change little – perhaps again opting for the Vermaelen-Koscielny combination he deployed in the reverse fixture in Manchester.

We could/should/will line-up as follows:

UPDATE: Arteta ruled out with injury – Coquelin expected to start in his place.

City have a few notable absentees. The Toure brothers are away with the Ivory Coast for the AFCON, Sergio Aguero is injured, and Samir Nasri’s recent dismissal means he has to sit this one out – given his recent hollow words of debt towards Arsene Wenger it’s probably best for the irksome little mercenary.

With 2 games in hand over Spurs, a win today will do wonders for our chances of making the Champions League spots. Victory will require a focused team performance with attacking verve and enthusiasm. We are more than capable of beating Manchester City if we collectively turn up todasy. However, as is customary with this Arsenal team, a poor performance like so many we have witnessed will almost certainly end with defeat.

I’m confident today, and I think Podolski will bag the winner in a 1-0 triumph.

If you fancy putting some money down on the result, head over to Bet Victor. £25 worth of free bets awaits those of you that sign up a new members. You can register here.

Arsenal vs Man City odds.

That’s all for today folks. The comments await your thoughts on the team; what way would you line up? Would you start with a fit Giroud instead of Walcott? Let me know.

I shall return tomorrow with a review of the game. Thanks for reading today.