Tottenham Hotspur 0 - 1 Arsenal: Little bit smash and grab

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Post by Jay29 Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:19 pm

It's incredible how we got away with the three points there. We were good for 72 seconds, and then poor for the remainder of the game and I'm still wondering whether it was our defending that got us through or Spurs' own lack of cutting edge. It was likely a combination of both. Either way, my feeling after the game is that we got away with it a bit. And I bloody love it.

We thought Spurs would give us chances and they gave us one within the first minute. They had pushed players from the first whistle and when the ball broke loose, we countered with Rosicky and Chamberlain. A fortuitous interchange between saw the ball sit up nicely for Rosicky, who thundered it right into the far corner. Often touted as a great striker of the ball, Rosicky hasn't scored too many screamers in his Arsenal career, but he made up for all of that with that single strike.

Offensively, that was the best we would see from Arsenal as the rest of the game was spent camped in our half, unable to get up the pitch due to a combination of Spurs' relentless pressure and our own wastefulness. They played high up the pitch, pushed players up and played with a tempo that we struggled to cope with and forced us to make a number of last ditch challenges on the edge of our box. When it came down to us to counter, the space was there to exploit, but we had nobody to do so other than Podolski. We certainly missed a trick with Chamberlain and Rosicky's position; you'd have thought the pace of Chamberlain would have been valuable on the flank where space was abundant, and not in the centre where he was forced to do a lot of defending.

Another problem was the isolation of Giroud. Against these sorts of tactics, Giroud isn't very useful. Arsenal were so deep that nobody could get up to support him, while when we did get the ball, he lacked the pace to break Spurs' defensive line.

Spurs were particularly threatening down our left, where Gibbs struggled against Townsend and Naughton. Adebayor was a constant threat with his physicality and running in behind. Really, all they lacked was that one chance. Somehow, we got through the half with Szczesny untested and our lead intact.

The second half didn't see any improvement. Szczesny did his best to gift them a goal, coming out and failing to claim two crosses in the space of a minute, and Spurs continued with the same tempo. Fortunately, Koscielny and Mertesacker were up to it, and dealt with anything that came at them. Spurs' pressure relented as the half went on, as they inevitably felt the effects of playing on Thursday. This allowed us to keep more of the ball, and bring Giroud into the game more and as we got closer to the end, he did a lot better in winning the ball up top and drawing fouls. Once we got into the last ten or so minutes, I felt we had seen out the biggest threat of Spurs.

In the end, Spurs could only resort to pinging balls forward to Adebayor and Kaboul. A few years ago that would have troubled us, but these days we know how to cope with that and ensured that they couldn't test Szczesny with a shot.

The manner of the win aside, that was a huge result. Beating Spurs is always a highlight of the season, but with the Chelsea defeat last night, and with our own league form faltering, the need to win was great. Ultimately, it mattered little how we got it, so long as we got it.

We've now opened up a nine point gap over Spurs, so bar a major collapse we shouldn't have to worry about what's behind us. We're third now on 62 points, along with Liverpool who are above us on goal difference. More important, it cuts the defect between us and Chelsea to four points and we play them next week. If we win that game, plus the game in hand against Swansea, we'll go above them. Even if we draw that game and beat Swansea, we'd only be a point behind them.

However it works out, we've at least given ourselves a chance of competing to the end. This run of fixtures has been well negotiated thus far; now it's down to us keep it going.

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Post by Lex Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:23 pm

If we play like this against Chelsea or City, we're going to get thrashed. Don't ever want to see 4-3-3 ever again
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Post by RealGunner Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:23 pm

That was a terrible performance.

Our attack just didn't click all game. Nothing we tried(despite little) came off. We should have put the game to bed in the first 20 minutes when oxlade could/should have scored 2 but we didn't.

Mertesacker and koscielny were brilliant all game. Gibbs didn't look fit to me. Sagna did well.

One of those games you know you will win 1-0 and just had to hold the lead. That was all that was important.

We really do need one of Ramsey, Wilshere and Ozil back asap.

Giroud was terrible. Like i said in the Giroud thread. I will rate him when he actually performs in a game that matters. He was awful with everything. Offside half the time. Jogging around nonchalantly. Not making any runs.
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Post by El Gunner Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:25 pm

Definitely smash and grab... Smash and grab might even be an understatement.
We were so lucky on occasions.
Gotta give credit to Rosicky's unbelievable effort though. It was absolutely amazing. :bow:
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Post by Jay29 Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:28 pm

This is what Poldi thought of the win:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/stuart_photoafc/13197424503/in/photostream/lightbox/

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Post by El Gunner Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:30 pm

Agree on the Giroud part.
He was absolutely horrible. Looked like he couldn't give 2 shits.
I can't remember him winning one aerial duel and he just didn't make any purposeful runs.
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Post by REWB Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:30 pm

with people like giroud in the team we cant keep the ball for shit. having a mid of ox, cazorla didnt help aswell they are both am's. we didnt play a proper CM today. when flamini came on it help us a lot.
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Post by REWB Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:32 pm

El Gunner wrote:Agree on the Giroud part.
He was absolutely horrible. Looked like he couldn't give 2 shits.
I can't remember him winning one aerial duel and he just didn't make any purposeful runs.

play sanogo, thats all i am going to say. had enough talking about the shitness of giroud. sanogo may be less of a goal threat atm, but at least he can retain possession ffs.
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Post by EL Patron Sun Mar 16, 2014 6:49 pm

It wasn't a flawless performance but with the players we are missing at the moment we can't be our fluid the all time. Despite not playing well we had numerous chances to kill the game which we wasted. The back four were amazing particularly Koscielny and Mert, Speerz looked dangerous going forward but they limited them to half chances at most.

Speeerz will always in our shadow, thats 3 games and 3 wins against them this season  Laughing 

Tim Sherwood  rofl
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Post by Sina Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:04 pm

hattick of wins over spuds  cheers 

http://www.fourfourtwo.com/statszone/8-2013/matches/695200/team-stats/3/OVERALL_04#tabs-wrapper-anchor

heroic defensive efforts :bow:

but lets not act like it was all spuds lol

fully fit Arsenal team would have put the game in bed in 1st half Theo and Aaron could grab a brace each

Szcz showed mental strength after those blunders early after interval coped well

we lacked out ball
theo up top could been option again like cup game
you could see a mid winnig the ball with very few options to look for
chambos movement in central role needs a lot to learn

but taking early lead at enemys turf and not have that firepower to go for kill so protecting the lead was best option well done for the effort
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Post by urbaNRoots Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:15 pm

3 points that's all, we're back in the title race. Expect an improvement in our performance against Chelsea, will be a lot harder than this one.

Mertescielny were *bleep* good, more of this from the duo!
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Post by RealGunner Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:28 pm

https://31.media.tumblr.com/9a9d46f41d0f10327d787100b23d2fa2/tumblr_n2jmstyYpE1r6ibubo2_250.gif
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Post by Raptorgunner Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:35 pm

I think you guys being harsh Giroud, I thought he had a good game for Spurs today, nothing went through him, WC performance for his standards.

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Post by urbaNRoots Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:57 pm

I swear people will blame everything on Giroud, even in games where he didn't do much wrong. How about the other players who couldn't get their shit together in attack? Huh? Pathetic.
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Post by Raptorgunner Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:40 pm

Did the commentator say? Flamini’s policy is: ball gets past or player gets past, but not both. :bow: rofl

1 second of brilliance, 94 minutes of top class defending. Rosicky what a legend. Proud

Mike Dean was best Arsenal player on the field.Laughing  Wink 
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Post by Art Morte Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:02 pm

And I thought you would be the top dogs here x)

Well done on the win, anyway. It's no secret that this Tottenham team struggle to score and you had the defensive quality to shut them down, to use that weakness against them. Not that I'm trying to make it sound like you played well, because you didn't!

Anyway, you need someone better than Giroud (duh). When you get in and around the box, he gets the job done with a good enough rate, but games like this reveal that he offers so little otherwise. You might as well have Shane Long up there - what kind of moron would rate him? - and he'd put up similar kind of numbers.
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Post by Benry Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:17 pm

Reading this thread you'd feel we had anything but a victory.

Only going to say a few things in general rather than about the game.

We beat the enemy depleted, we dug in and got a huge 3 points by playing shite. That for Spurs was soul destroying, they threw everything and got nothing. They aren't good enough we are.

It's time for Arsenal fans everywhere, now to have a collective confidence of achievement. Let's go into a game without the annoying pessimism, we know the team's deficiencies, but screw it we're on the edge of something special. We are Arsenal and it's time to forget fear.
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Post by EL Patron Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:40 pm

Art Morte wrote:And I thought you would be the top dogs here x)

Well done on the win, anyway. It's no secret that this Tottenham team struggle to score and you had the defensive quality to shut them down, to use that weakness against them. Not that I'm trying to make it sound like you played well, because you didn't!

Anyway, you need someone better than Giroud (duh). When you get in and around the box, he gets the job done with a good enough rate, but games like this reveal that he offers so little otherwise. You might as well have Shane Long up there - what kind of moron would rate him? - and he'd put up similar kind of numbers.

its not secret that Giroud is not good enough to play for us but our problems in attack are more of a collective failure more than anything. For example today we kept lumping the ball to him upfront expecting to hold the ball up with two defenders surrounding him. He is always going to loose the ball there, even in the rare moments where he managed to hold the ball up the rest of the team were like 20 or 30 yards away from him.

Today he din't even get any decent service, most of the chances fell to Poldi and Ox. No wonder he looked a bit frustrated, any striker would have frustrated with the lack of support or service today. My conclusion is that Giroud is not good enough to start for us but his form at the moment is more to do with the team and the way we are playing less to do with him.
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Post by SamuelJayC Sun Mar 16, 2014 10:34 pm

Well, that was quite something.

After Rosicky's early stunner and then Chamberlain's one-on-one miss, I thought we'd gone on to have numerous challenges, but Spurs played really well. I was surprised at how poor we were - even if our last few away League games (Southampton, Liverpool, Stoke) were abysmal.

Sagna, Mertesacker and Koscielny were outstanding yet again. Gibbs wasn't fit, in my opinion, a bit rushed back, but did ok. He looked more secure when Monreal came on to help him out. Arteta and Chamberlain did very well too.

The front 4 - bar Rosicky's magical goal - were subdued. To be honest, Giroud was an embarrassment at times - I don't think that's an overreaction. We'll need way more from him in the next 8 weeks.

But let's enjoy the win. We're right in the title race and in the semi-finals of the FA Cup. It's a wonderful domestic season for Arsenal thus far.
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Post by Eman Mon Mar 17, 2014 2:13 am

Tomas Rosicky, you motherfecking beauty :bow: Proud
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Post by VendettaRed07 Mon Mar 17, 2014 4:36 am

What an awful match, but 3 points is nice.

Sanogo is an even worse finisher than Giroud, but he should play more in the next few weeks because he can get into positions high up on the pitch, keep the ball, and kick it out to players on the wings. Giroud is just so slow and through balls to him just almost always go straight to the other team. Atleast Sanogo manages to keep possession.
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Post by El Gunner Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:10 am

Urban and Rapz, you guys seriously need to see the light on Giroud.
He was embarrassingly bad y'day.
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Post by urbaNRoots Mon Mar 17, 2014 8:45 am

He was bad but so were Podolski, Cazorla, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Rosicky for most part of the game yet no one hears about it. I understand Rosicky as he scored the winning goal but the others were proper shit aswell and offered no option upfront, we basically parked the bus from the first minute and had no pace upfront on the counter. I hate scapegoating players that's all.

Also ironically it comes from you, El Gunner, your opinion on Özil... now that's embarrassing Laughing
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Post by REWB Mon Mar 17, 2014 10:17 am

urban giroud at the monent is a passanger though, thats why we are picking on him. at least podolski, cazorla ox etc offered something even if they were poorer than usual.
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Post by Raptorgunner Mon Mar 17, 2014 12:41 pm

El Gunner wrote:Urban and Rapz, you guys seriously need to see the light on Giroud.
He was embarrassingly bad y'day.

I said he was Spurs best player, not Arsenal. Laughing Giroud should be Benched from now on, we all saw he can be average when coming off the bench, but Sanogo is not worse so no choice but to start Giroud.

We have to score more goals, the GD could come back and hunt us.


Last edited by Raptorgunner on Mon Mar 17, 2014 12:55 pm; edited 2 times in total
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