Category Archives: BPL

A Worrying Crock List

With Van Persie confirmed as being out for 6 weeks following the knock to his knee from the Carling Cup encounter with Birmingham, and Walcott and Fabregas struggling to recover from their own injuries, Arsenal’s crock list is a worrying one.

It couldn’t have come at a more critical time, with the season winding up to a close and the premiership title at stake, not forgetting the FA Cup quarter-final with Manchester United and the Champions League return leg with Barcelona coming up.

In the absence of the injured players, what are Arsenal’s options to ensure that their challenge in the remaining fronts does not unravel and fizzle out like in the recent past years?

Arsenal will have to start thinking seriously now with the premiership match with Sunderland tonight. No less than a win will ensure that Asenal keep up their challenge with Manchester United. Anything less would mean that Arsenal have lost one too many opportunities to show that they deserve to win the premiership title and more.

A loss or even a draw may further dent any confidence Arsenal may still possess in their ablility to mount a serious or even a credible challenge in all the remaining fronts.

Marouane Chamakh has not played a full game for some time and he looks to have lost his touch. Bendtner plays with a smirk on his face. I am not too sure whether this is out of a sense of confidence or just bravado. It is true that he scored a hat-trick against Leyton Orient in the FA Cup replay .

But Bendtner is not in Van Persie’s class. He is often slow to react and loses the ball once too often when challenged.

Jack Wilshire should be allright. Even fact, he is the only one who is consistent and inspires confidence in the current team. In the absence of Fabregas, Van Persie and Walcott, Nasri would have to shoulder much of the responsibilty. He has to play at his best, perhaps taking on the defence in  one to one encounters and trying from a distance.

Everyone knows that Arsenal’s weakness is their inability to mix up their game with long shots and perhaps taking on defenders in one to one encounters instead of passing the ball to death.

If there rest of the team, especially the defence, can from now on play above themselves, on a consistent basis, Arsenal’s 2010/2011 season may yet have a golden lining.

Otherwise, it looks like adios once again for Arsenal.


Alex Ferguson Should Not Sully His Reputation

Alex Ferguson is at it again! This time he has lashed out at the match officials and the referee for awarding a “soft” penalty in the  2-1 defeat to Chelsea.

Many refereeing decisions in the past had gone in favour of Manchester United and Alex Ferguson had kept quiet. For example, in their recent match with Wigan where the referee should have had sent Rooney off for elbowing Wigan’s James McCarthy, but didn’t.

Alex Ferguson should not sully his reputation.

It is true that match officials and referees sometimes make horrendous mistakes. It is part of the game, unless the English FA is amenable to the use of video evidence.

Although the penalty awarded by Martin Atkinson may be a “soft” one, I think he was justified in awarding it. If the decision had gone the other way, I am sure Sir Alex would have kept quiet about it.

For  a manager of Ferguson’s stature, prudence is the better part of valour.

The Way Is Open For Arsenal!

So, Chelsea have just defeated Manchester United 2-1!  This post is written at 5.40 a.m, Malaysian time, just after the Chelsea-MU game this morning.

This means that Arsenal can close the gap to one point in the premiership if they beat their next opponent Sunderland next weekend. But before that, Arsenal have the return match with Leyton Orient in the FA Cup fixture and the return match with Barcelona in the Champoins League to contend with. 

But first, Arsenal will have to overcome the psychological blow from losing to Birmingham in the Carling Cup. And their injured players Walcott, Fabregas and Van Persie have to recover quickly.

Will or can Arsenal seize the chance to close the gap to one point from MU and take it from there?. If they can, then Arsenal’s season may yet have a golden lining and this will be just reward to themselves and their long sufffering fans and supporters.

Whatever it is, Arsenal cannot hope for a better chance, and they cannot and should not take it lightly. It may perhaps be Arsenal’s last!

It is possible that Manchester United may become demoralised for losing a golden opportunity to put distance betweem themselves and Arsenal, their closest rival. However. knowing Manchester United, they are surely not going to make it easy for their challenger.

More importantly, Arsene Wenger may have to do some serious rethinking as to their predictable style of play. Arsenal have got to try scoring from long shots and maybe taking on their opponents directly instead of passing the ball to death, as they often do to their own woe, especially against opponents who pack their back in numbers. 

Do you agree?

MU On The Way To Winning The Premiership Again?

The way things are going, it seems that Manchester United are on the way to another premiership title. If MU beat Chelsea in a classic clash tonight, they will be 7 points ahead of their nearest rival Arsenal who failed to win the League Cup yesterday.

This will pile on further pressure on Arsenal and with their 2-1 defeat to Birmingham in yesterday’s League Cup final,  I am afraid this may be too much a psychological blow for them to recover from.

To add to Arsenal’s woes, both Walcott and Fabregas are out with injuries picked up in their 2-1 win over Stoke City earlier.

Without them, it was quite obvious that Arsenal struggled to play their usual fluid game in the League Cup final against Birmingham. This is not to take credit away from Birmingham who played a resolute game and deserved to win.

I have often said that Arsenal’s weakness is their predictable style of play. They tend to pass the ball to death instead of taking chances at goal. Their failure to mix up their game with long shots has often ended in woe.

Another thing  that I have observed about Arsenal is that some of their players, especially Arshavin and Rosicky of late, often do not know where the goal-mouth is and therefore it is not surprising that their attempts at goal just aren’t finding their  target!

Especially when you are playing  teams who have wisen up to your style of play and therefore pack the back in numbers, you have to learn to mix up your game with long shots and lops, something that Barcelona do well.

My fear for Arsenal is not only whether they can recover in time psychologically from the defeat to Birmingham, but also whether they are able to adapt their style of play according to the situation.

If not, I believe Arsenal’s season is over even if Walcott and Fabregas recover quickly to come back to play.

That will indeed be a very sad and disappointing thing to Arsenal’s long suffering fans and supporters and to the neutrals who love to watch beautiful football. It will be another season of promise and failure, coming close and fading out  in the end.

Will Arsenal’s fans and supporters have to wait yet another for more of the same?     

I hope and wish to be proven wrong.

What do you say, especially Arsenal fans and supporters out there?.

Welcome To My New Blog

I have a blog Life As An Ordinary Malaysian where I write on everything and anything under the sun that affect, concern, interest or impact on me living life as an ordinary Malaysian.

I wanted to start a new blog on sports only, but now I have decided to add pastimes and reflections, to spice things up. I can’t only write on sports. It will be too dry and dull.

I am an Arsenal fan, have been since 2003. That was the time when Arsenal were strutting their stuff, conquering all before them in the EPL with the likes of Thierry Henry, Berkamp and Robert Pires.

They even earned themselves the title of  “The Invincibles” in the  2003/20004 season, not losing a single game in the premiership in that season.

Ever since, Arsenal have won anything of note, except for the 2005 FA Cup. They did come close on a number of occasions to winning the premiership, but inconsistences and lack of confidence put paid to their efforts. 

Will Arsenal win the premiership this year? They are now only a single point behind leaders Manchester United after the recent 1-0 win over Stoke City. But MU have a game in hand.

However, Arsenal’s win over Stoke City has come at a cost, with injuries to Theo Walcott and Cesc Fabregas and this may impact on their chance with important games coming thick and fast as the season comes to a close.

One thing I find frustrating about Arsenal is that they pass the ball to death, instead of trying to mix it up with long ball atempts at goal which may be better in some situations.

What do you think. Have Arsenal the wherewithals to lift the premiership title this year? Your comments are welcome.