Olympiakos 2 - 1 Arsenal: Let's just ignore this one

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Post by Jay29 Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:34 pm

With Arsenal qualified and Olympiakos already in the Europa League, this game was a dead rubber. As such, the squad Arsenal took with them to Greece was full of fringe players and youngsters.

Szczesny remained in goal and Vermaelen and Jenkinson kept their places at the back, but it was all change else where. Squillaci rose from the abyss to play a game, Jernade Meade made his first start, Coquelin, Ramsey and Rosicky formed the midfield triangle and Chamberlain, Gervinho and Chamakh lead the attack. The bench? Arshavin plus some youngsters.

First half

Dare I say it, Arsenal actually played relatively well in this half. They looked dynamic up front, with Gervinho and Chamakh looking lively and Rosicky being a real driving force in midfield. Whenever Arsenal broke, they looked dangerous, and had their final ball been a lot better, we could have scored more than we did.

Rosicky's goal was a very well worked goal and was a result of someone actually making a run into the box from deep; the desire to actually do so has been lacking from our players.

Defensively, it wasn't that great. A recurrent theme throughout the game was Arsenal's inability to cope with Olympiakos' midfield runners and their backline was often carved open by quick one-two's. Arsenal's midfield and wingers did very little tracking back, so it all it took was a direct pass into our third for us to come under pressure.

Second half

Those defensive frailties are what eventually cost us the game, as well an inability to defend set-pieces, which had also been a problem this game. The first goal was preventable, and the second, though a great strike from Mitroglu, could have also been prevented.

The attack again looked dangerous on the break, but again lacked that final ball. Disappointing way to lose the game.

Why ignore this result?

Another defeat this may be, this result doesn't really represent the overall problems we have at this moment in time, purely because of the squad that was out there tonight and the circumstances they were playing in.

You can't play the likes of Squillaci, Arshavin and Chamakh and expect them to perform. None of them have the fitness, the form or even the motivation to play well, knowing that even if they did, they wouldn't be in the first team squad.

When you throw in some fringe players like Coquelin, Ramsey and Chamberlain who aren't playing well, chances are the result isn't going to be a good one. The presence of Szczesny, Vermaelen, Jenkinson and Gervinho isn't going to change that.

Had it been the first team out there, the result would be more worrying. As it is, it's just a bunch of players who won't be at Arsenal soon and a bunch of players not playing who aren't playing well. Not a great concern.

Moreover, when you look at the potential teams we could've drawn had we won the group, is it any easier than the potential teams we can draw now that we're runners up? I don't there's a difference at all, and given the way we're playing right now, none of those teams are going to be easy games. All of them have a genuine chance of knocking us out the competition.

We could draw Barcelona now. Had we won the group, we could've drawn Real Madrid. Pick your poison.


Last edited by GoonerJay29 on Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:57 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by Sina Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:36 pm

Lol great title
i just wanted to same the same
lets just pretend no team named Arsenal played tonight

story of our season relying on player who have just got back from injury
and when he goes off
we have no such a thing that can be called midfield!
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Post by SamuelJayC Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:37 pm

As it stands, #AFC could face

PSG, Malaga, Dortmund, Shakhtar, Bayern or Barcelona.
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Post by Rev Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:39 pm

Knowing our luck we'll get Malaga and get raped by Isco and co.

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Post by RealGunner Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:45 pm

Rosicky was amazing :bow:

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Post by furiouswindbottom Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:13 pm

Szczesney: 6 Almost a 7...but two goals went in and he didn't have much to do.
Jenks: 6 Played it safe.
Vermaelen: 7 One man central defence. Looked shattered by the end. Anyone would.
Squid: 4 Really wanted him to do well...he's just counting the money. If I was the boss he would be released on a free tonight. Nothing to do with game time...he didn't give a shit
Meade: 6.5 Great first half. Reminded me of Cashley Asshole. In a good way. Second half he tired, but we can forgive him that eh? He's new to this.
Rosicky: 8 Majestic. Ran the show then perhaps Arsene thought 'We need him for the big games'. Fair enough.
Coquelin: 6 Excellent first half. Poor second. Maybe just a case of game time...or no Rosciky. Interesting one that. Rosicky and Coquelin?
Oxlade Chamberlain: 3 Awful. He's just a kid. And very talented. I have no idea why he is performing so badly. But...no pressure. Just a kid.
Gervinho: 4 Set up a goal very well. Apart from that it was like watching an amateur player. On crack. Useless.
Ramsey: 4 He was really trying but was not at the races again. A liabilty at the moment. Hate to say that but it's true.
Chamahk: 5.5 At least he tried. He really did. He'll be shattered tonight and we can at least thank him for trying.

Arshavin: 5.5 Made the effort going forward but not when we lost it. His head was down at times and you can understand why. Wenger's team selection tonight means that he is finished at Arsenal.

Angha: N/A

Barca next. You know it.
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Post by urbaNRoots Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:18 pm

Wenger: "We had a positive game. Not the result we wanted but a very encouraging game. We must do well until January now."

Is Wenger becoming more of a clown every day and more?
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Post by furiouswindbottom Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:30 pm

Is Wenger becoming more of a clown every day and more?

We are in fantastic shape! 10th in the league and with players looking like they don't care. I would settle for 7 points off 4th by the time the window opens. But we need to move quickly. The sooner the players are in the sooner they can play. We need to forget waiting until the last minute to save a few quid.

Move early for (in order)

1. Fellaini (probably no chance but at least try. I heard that he's an Arsenal fan. Is there any truth in this?)
2. Wanyama. No Fellaini? Get him. We get Fellaini? Get Wanyama as well.
3. Diame. Can't get the above? Get Diame. Got Wanyama? Get Diame as well.
4. Michu. Arsene seems to be trying to find the perfect target man. Surely this is the guy?
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Post by Amar Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:41 pm

Didn't really care for the result, but the performances of Gervinho and Chamakh against par defenders was laughable.
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Post by Sina Tue Dec 04, 2012 10:52 pm

Jonathan Wilson ‏@jonawils

Maybe City are losing as long-term plan to lower England's coefficient so only 3 qualify for Ch Lg, thus destroying Arsenal?


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in your dreams Mercenaries
although that is more of a joke
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Post by Die Borussen Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:00 pm

Amar wrote:Didn't really care for the result, but the performances of Gervinho and Chamakh against par defenders was laughable.
Laughing

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Post by Lex Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:14 pm

Can't blame Chamakh for this at all. Hasn't had so much as a sniff of a game since Reading and is suddenly thrown in the deep end. I hope you weren't all expecting him to transform into Ibra?

He ran his socks off and tried his best. I'm more disappointed with Gervinho than Chamakh.
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Post by furiouswindbottom Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:25 pm

He ran his socks off and tried his best

He did. As a football fan...that's all you can ask for. We have players who are not doing that and hiding behind the manager's excuses.

I can see if someone is putting in the effort. I can't believe some fans can't.
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Post by urbaNRoots Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:35 pm

Marouane Chamakh's passing accuracy tonight - 47%. Professional footballer.
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Post by FennecFox7 Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:37 pm

Give the guy a break. He was all over the place. You can't fault a player who runs his ass off like that
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Post by Raptorgunner Wed Dec 05, 2012 12:05 am

Rosicky is back. :bow:

Chamakh and Arshavin should leave Arsenal both being wasted, I wish Wenger gave them more playing time.

I wonder was excsue Wenger has in mind if we lose on Saturday? Jaded?Jaded?Jaded?

Oxlade needs to go a loan this January and I hope he takes Ramsey with him.

Gervinho should take a one way ticket to African cup and stay there until summer.
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Post by djoe26 Wed Dec 05, 2012 1:02 am

The only positives about this game was Chesny, Rosicky and Meade. Other than that it was the same old Arsenal.
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Post by Raptorgunner Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:13 am

'We must now focus on the Premier League'
on the game…
We had a good first half. We dropped physically in the second half because many players lack competition at that level and therefore we couldn’t take the chances for the second goal. hmm :facepalm:

on Olympiacos’ first goal…
We also got a very bad decision against us on the goal. Wojciech was far away from the ball. rofl

I don’t want to make a fuss of it but it’s difficult to concede a corner when it doesn’t go off the goalkeeper. But we have to take it on the chin and go home and focus on our next game. rofl

on Tomas Rosicky…
He has not played for six months and we were cautious with him. We decided before the game to play for 45 minutes and see how he got on. He’s a bit tight, muscular, but no injury. We’ll see how we recovers now for Saturday. :bow:

on the young players…
I feel you discover the young players in these kind of competitions [and games like the one] we had tonight. They have the quality. If everybody is fit we have a strong squad but in certain areas, of course when you have players like Diaby and Rosicky not fit, we are a bit short because we cannot rotate. We’ll see where we stand on January 1 and see what we do. hmm

on the draw…
We need a good Christmas present now [in the draw]. We’ll see. The disadvantage we have is we play the second game away, but it’s not statistically proven it’s a disadvantage. The important thing now is to focus on the Premier League and forget about the Champions League. [We need to] get ourselves back in decent form in the Premier League. :brickwall:

on Kostas Mitroglou…
Mitroglou scored two great goals. The first one in London was a great header and tonight was a fantastic goal as well, I must say. I won’t say more because if I do you’ll think I want to buy him. rofl
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Post by Raptorgunner Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:27 am

Bring on Barcelona, every team will beat us why not go out like we always do. eco smile

No chance and no the pressure just like today. Sad
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Post by Eman Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:59 am

Raptorgunner wrote:Bring on Barcelona, every team will beat us why not go out like we always do. eco smile

No chance and no the pressure just like today. Sad
The knockout stages aren't until after January. I'm not going to make any assumptions about our chances of progression until I see how we're shaping up around that time.
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Post by LeBéninois Wed Dec 05, 2012 5:07 am

Eman wrote:
Raptorgunner wrote:Bring on Barcelona, every team will beat us why not go out like we always do. eco smile

No chance and no the pressure just like today. Sad
The knockout stages aren't until after January. I'm not going to make any assumptions about our chances of progression until I see how we're shaping up around that time.


I would like to see Isco, Fellaini and bojan/pato in loan . But we are not going to get players with such quality
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Post by Wilson37 Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:46 am

Positives..
Rosicky.. He didnt misplace a pass.. Wasnt sacred to run into defenders.. Good one touch passes.. He was out for 6 months and he comes with such a performance.. Thats class.. Gervinho or Ramsey will never be such a player even if they play continuously at Arsenal till 30.. Given that he is retired from his international career, i will be very happy if he can give us 60 or atleast 45 minutes of such performance every week..
Meade.. Good debut.. He is so small.. All our kids need growth hormone if they need to make it in the PL..
Sczeny put in a solid performance.. Vermelen and Jenkinson were quite decent..
*
now the negatives..
We managed to create some good linkup plays in the final third but the end product was lacking.. No suprise as Gervinho and Chamakh are playing upfront.. Ramsey put in a decent performance but should have done better with a couple of chances.. Ox was terrible.. He has no idea what to do..
But whenever Olymp got the ball in our third, they looked threatening to score.. We are seeing this for long now.. Our attackers dont have vin quality of Olymp or Swansea or even Villa to make some simple passes or crosses in the final third.. Unbelievable..:facepalm:
really we should get players from these teams, who are at one-fourth/eighth our wages.. They may not have huge potential, but they remain professional and keep things simple.. Eventhough they cant produce magic, they dont make basic mistakes.. And they are consistent..
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