Stoke 0-0 Arsenal – player ratings

126

There wasn’t much to enjoy about the game today, bar the performance of Petr Cech who made some very important saves to help secure a point and put us back on top of the table.

Here’s how the players rated.

PC
33
9.5
HB
24
7
PM
4
6.5
LK
6
6
NM
18
7.5
MF
20
5.5
AR
8
6
AOC
15
4
TW
14
3.5
JC
28
7.5
OG
12
6.5
PC
33
9
HB
24
6.5
PM
4
6.5
LK
6
6
NM
18
7
MF
20
6
AR
8
6.5
AOC
15
5
TW
14
4
JC
28
7
OG
12
6.5
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33: Petr Cech

9
arseblog
9.5
Readers
45

Outstanding today, strong and calm, and made some brilliant saves. The double-save was just superb.

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24: Hector Bellerin

6.5
arseblog
7
Readers
37

Got well down the right at times, Stoke had little joy attacking down that side of the pitch.

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4: Per Mertesacker

6.5
arseblog
6.5
Readers
3

It's really noticeable how much he misses Cazorla as his out-ball from the back.

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6: Laurent Koscielny

6
arseblog
6
Readers
5

Made a couple of really careless passes this afternoon, one of which resulted in Cech having to make that double save.

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18: Nacho Monreal

7
arseblog
7.5
Readers
14

Thought he was great today, really switched on defensively and made some important headed clearances

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20: Mathieu Flamini

6
arseblog
5.5
Readers
16

Tidy enough, but there's just no cohesiveness in our midfield at the moment.

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8: Aaron Ramsey

6.5
arseblog
6
Readers
13

Always wanted the ball, tried to make things happen but the midfield issue is serious now. At one point looked around to see no movement ahead of him, and was forced to go all the way back. Also, saved us with a great clearance off the line

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15: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

5
arseblog
4
Readers
12

He tried hard and had some nice moments but those were usually followed by some moments he'd rather forget. His lack of form is a worry now.

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14: Theo Walcott

4
arseblog
3.5
Readers
11

Another poor showing from someone who is now a senior player. That goal against Man City apart he's really struggled since coming back from injury.

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28: Joel Campbell

7
arseblog
7.5
Readers
33

Another hard working performance, might have done better with that chance near the end though

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12: Olivier Giroud

6.5
arseblog
6.5
Readers
29

Twice denied by genuinely excellent saves by Jack Butland, got kicked around a lot, rarely given the free kicks he should have been.

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17: Alex Iwobi

6
arseblog
6.5
Readers
46

Looked bright and sharp when he came on.

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21: Calum Chambers

N/A
arseblog
5.5
Readers
35

Not on long enough to rate.

Vote is now closed

Bonus rating: Go fuck yourselves/10 for the Stoke fans chanting about Aaron Ramsey

126 COMMENTS

      • Yeah maybe that was a bit harsh. The ref didn’t cost us points as clearly as Mike Dean did, but that doesn’t mean he was good. He was bad for us and sometimes he was bad for the opposition as well. In my opinion, that performance was way below the level we should be seeing in this league.

        Thumb up 28 Thumb down 3

        • The ref was fantastic today. Let the game play, didn’t let players roll around. So he didn’t give the cards. But there was no harsh tackles. The problem with Arsenal was, there was just not enough quality in midfield. Like Arseblog said, we have no out ball from defense when cazorla doesn’t play. Ox is not a central player, even if he thinks he is. Looked lost. As bad as everyone says Walcott was, I disagree. He kept receiving the ball was and was constantly isolated, having to beat two or three men. Our poorest area was easily in the centre. I like Ramsey he’s an excellent player, but if you’re looking for him to dictate play, you’ve got real issues. The main thing that p…ed me off though was, against Liverpool Wenger made a double change on the hour mark, when we were on top and controlling the game, giving the control to Liverpool. Now when we needed the change of shape and personnel he never made it. If Ozil doesn’t play next game against Chelsea, I hope he considers Campbell for that role, he has much better vision than Ox and he links up better with the forwards.

          Thumb up 35 Thumb down 35

      • Did you watch the game? There is one player, I think called Peters must have fouled Campbell 10 times and some of them must be really bad tackles and not a single time he got the yellow card and not even telling off. There was a player who had a crunching challenge and didn’t get the ball and then told referee to F off and guess what no yellow card. The worst was two penalties that never got awarded. Please, if you want slag off team for non performance then that’s acceptable but don’t defend the referee. One penalty decision & we would have won the games. It’s all about small margins in these games. See Liv – Man U.

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        • Yes, I watched the game.and have been critical of referee’s in the past like Taylor and Dean. Today was not about the ref as much as you might like it to be. We battled hard and won a good point in my opinion. Ref was o.k but not perfect. Walcott was atrocious. I think thats a fair summation when we all take our Arsenal glasses off. By tomorrow, when you’ve had time to mull it over, you might think the same.

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        • As a team you have to nullify those fine margins and not allow decisions you cannot control to determine your fate. We should have scored in open play. Giroud had a good chance as did JC and Aaron. Also we showed them too much respect, which I understand is a mentality thing against a bogey team, but we perhaps should have been more direct. Ox was trying to pass too much while it would have probably served him better to be more direct and run at players. Walcott too. Overall or passing was not coming off today, too many passes into space where there was no runner. In that case I feel we needed to break the wall down target than try to go around it

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  1. Good point considering state of the squad. Walcott’s lack of effort however is shameful, a throwback to the bad old days before we shipped all the crap out

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    • I think Walcott isn’t motivated to play wide. So he is playing like he did when he played on the right.

      It doesn’t excuse his performance though.

      Thumb up 40 Thumb down 11

    • I think he may be fatigued and to be honest I don’t think he did that badly today, certainly not a 4. The amount of off the ball runs he made but wasn’t picked out was silly. Also actually thought Ox was better than Ramsey today, kind of shocked by the ratings really!

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      • For me Ox was the worse player for us on the field, followed by Walcott. The former’s passing is woeful, the latter couldn’t hold on the ball when he had it.

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        • This ! Ox’s passing was woeful today. He looks really down in the mouth when he should be firing on all cylinders and trying to convince Wenger he merits a start. I find that worrying.

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          • His passing was poor but so was Ramsey’s and Giroud’s (and everyone else really). Just seems odd to me to pick out those two players when we were poor across the board (and even then, we didn’t play THAT badly).

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          • Ramsey looses the ball and or gives it away far too often. He needs to read the game better (and be far more aware of where his team mates are, and pick a pass through to whomever, but he is either too careless or his technique needs improvement, or both. He is too much of a liability in mid park, leaving the central defence exposed.

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      • Walcott was so timid whenever there looked like a physical play was coming, he almost appeared afraid. He just backed off using any force against opponents when he came close to them. Terrible performance today. Just appeared to me like a little kid afraid to play against the bigger boys. No physicality at all on his part.

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      • Easily the worst player on the pitch was Ox. Not his fault though, he’s just not a central player. How many times I saw him just standing around and not looking for the ball when we had it was funny. When he got it, he was turning the wrong way because he has no awareness of the runs being made. Wenger should have tried swapping him and Campbell. I think Campbell would’ve been more suited to that role .

        Thumb up 12 Thumb down 2

        • Ox is not a central player, you say. We have better wingers at the moment (Alexis and Campbell).
          I really wonder where and how he will improve his game.
          I love the Ox but I am beginning to fear for his Arsenal future.

          Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

      • For whats its worth you are not alone.. I’m a day late with input but in my opinion OX did well , very few mistakes and lots of good moment to imply there is more to come the midfield was way more balanced than in recent outings. And I share you opinion about Theo as well I think he is on the right path i’m looking forward to seeing him run at Chavs backline.

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    • Wenger should bench Walcott, a while ago he did very well coming off the bench. He’s playing like he doesn’t need to fight for a spot because of the starts he’s been getting. I think off the bench he showed more hunger and a point to prove.

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  2. Walcott and OX were poor… Campbell is becoming very reliable and quicly becoming an important player with his vision passing and workrate. Cech is top class. Ramsey if not for the goal line clearance i would put him in the same bracket as Walcott and Ox he wasn’t as bad as those 2 but he was pretty close he unstabilizes our midfield when he doesn’t choose when to attack carefully too eager to join the attack and doesn’t recover well when it breaks down that combo flamin and ramsey is not working. Elneny time to shine.

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    • Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      Poorly-rated Thumb up 3 Thumb down 79

  3. I think today’s match showed me two things clear as day. First, Walcott really is a striker and not a winger. Secondly, no one in our midfield looked to get open to receive a pass from Mertesacker or Koscielny. And these issues have been evident for a few matches now.

    Thumb up 132 Thumb down 1

    • Agreed. Midfield 3 were poor. Not bad really when you think they are reserves as if Ozil coq and cazorla were fit they would be on bench.

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    • I was thinking the same about Walcott. When Alexis comes back he is going on the bench or maybe starting over Giroud when he starts to look jaded.

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  4. Tough game. We were not at our best. We could have lost, but we also could have won. We terribly missed Mesut. Cech was the savior – a terrific performance.

    The midfield was our weak point today, especially on the creativity side. The only key passes and through balls were provided by Campbell – a wide player.

    Still on top and hoping that with several key players coming back we can remain on top until the end of the season. COYG!

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  5. Iwobi almost changed the game for us when he came on. To show you how bad Walcott was. HE was useless offensively and defensively he needs to find his form because we need everybody!! The OX ugh don’t know where to begin seriously lacking in confidence and desire and hunger.. Cech fantastic

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  6. Not a bad point without Ozil Sanchez cazorla coq welbeck jack rosicky. 4 guaranteed starters there. Just made worst cos we conceded in the 90th min to drop two points against Liverpool.

    Thumb up 57 Thumb down 9

    • It’s not just the big names either. If you look at the amount of technical proficiency those names bring to the team it just goes to show how unbalanced we are. We’re a team who prides itself on controlling games and dictating games, and those are our dictators, the players whose skills facilitate that style. It’s all very well looking at Liverpool and saying they’re having a crisis, but it’s the specific technical type of player we were deprived of today that is such an issue.

      Thumb up 17 Thumb down 0

  7. Had we not conceded that late goal at Anfield, this will be a point worth celebrating but nevertheless we are still on top

    Thumb up 32 Thumb down 0

  8. Cech gets a 10 from me, he did everything he could and helped us avoid what would have been a morale crushing defeat. Rest of the ratings re spot on. We seriously need Alexis Carzola and Ozil back to fire us to the title that’s gonna be a fight to the finish Now #COYG

    Thumb up 68 Thumb down 1

    • Awful, awful knuckle-dragging inbreds. And they still have their fair share of sheight on their books, starting with that pig-faced captain and that top-knotted thug.

      Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

    • Seven called fouls, four uncalled, and one where he kicked the ball away after conceding a fk that should have gotten him a yellow as well.
      Arnautovic, Shawcross, and Whelan also got away with a fair few. For me, Shawcross should have been booked inside of ten minutes when he went in studs up on Ox.

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      • Worst was when he charged into the pen area… clocked Cech going for the cross and clearly, deliberately, calculatedly (yes, I’m taking this rather seriously!) stuck his elbow into Cech’s ear and then levered him downwards with that gorilla-sized forearm (matched only by the shape of his ears).
        At least the ref gave us the foul… but precious little else!

        Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  9. Midfield is really a problem. Let’s hope Elneny can make the difference. Thought Monreal and Campbell were outstanding today.

    Thumb up 71 Thumb down 1

    • Monreal is our player of the season so far. I know Ozil gets all the plaudits, and he is vital as he creates the goals, but Monreal does everything right, and well, every game. Love the guy!

      Thumb up 53 Thumb down 0

  10. I thought this was one of Ox’s worst games in an Arsenal shirt. I felt that so many moves broke down because of him, his passing is too sub-par to play in the middle

    Thumb up 34 Thumb down 20

    • Ramsey broke most of our moves, Ox was bad but kinda expected it so wont be too hard on him. Ramsey always wants the ball to lose it and put the team under pressure.

      Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  11. It was a decent game but we need to do better.
    OX and Walcott ‘s current forms are worrying.
    I still have faith that OX will improve.
    Injured players need to come back already and I hope Elneny delivers when he starts playing.

    Thumb up 26 Thumb down 2

  12. I’ll take a point especially as we had no ozil could of won 2-0 if weren’t for butland glad cech saved with that double save a tale of two keepers know to avenge that loss at c***sea were we were had done by
    At least were top

    Thumb up 4 Thumb down 5

  13. We survived the game with no injuries and we didn’t lose. That’s a good result under the circumstances and I’m glad we didn’t risk Sanchez and Ozil against those animals. They will now be ready and available against the cunts at Stamford Bridge next week.

    Thumb up 54 Thumb down 2

  14. Ox pass accuracy is a real concern, I love that player and I am really rooting for him to do well.
    Blogs do you have any stats on this?

    Thumb up 18 Thumb down 4

  15. Ramsey has to understand better the need to play make.

    Walcott’s limitation in build up play is beyond appalling.

    Frustrating draw. Other than Campbell no player looked like creating a chance today. Needed something extra from Ramsey and Walcott.

    Giroud tried.

    Cech saved us

    Thumb up 26 Thumb down 5

  16. In the next match it’ll be worth the gamble on Alexis. Creativity-wise the team was clueless today. Nobody mentions the bad refereeing, he really let the orcs play like orcs. Several fouls were not called, especially on Giroud. But Chamberlain’s form is shocking, often he was just standing around when he should’ve been showing himself for the pass. Walcott’s just poor on the ball, but that’s no surprise to anyone, except that he really had noone around him to pick these balls up that he had lost. Iwobi was at least looked like a footballer wanting to make things happen.
    Topping the table is nice, but we really should be looking at increasing the points difference, not just maintaining the pace.

    Thumb up 14 Thumb down 3

  17. How could any football fans think that booing someone who has had their leg broken by one of your players is a reasonable thing to do? The sky commentator said Ramsey was being booed because of an incident with Shawcross. Why did he not say that Shawcross almost destroyed his career and those booing should be banned from going to football matches.

    Thumb up 92 Thumb down 0

    • My theory is that the Stoke orcs can still smell the blood on him and it got them riled up. Some dogs eat turds, Stoke orcs get excited by the smell of blood on other players. It’s just their nature.

      Thumb up 51 Thumb down 2

      • Thumb me down by all means but at least they sang this time. And in human language! Normally they just grunt, bark or howl when they try to communicate with each other.

        Thumb up 34 Thumb down 1

  18. Wonder what Cech has to do to get a 10 ;-).

    We really missed Ozil in the possession game especially building from the back where he always makes himself available and does not turn the ball over.

    Ramsey is working very hard, but to me just does not seem close to the form he had a couple of years ago with that great run of matches in the middle. Could be the partnership with Flamini and his not being able to really build possession as Arteta a few years ago and Coquelin more recently were able to.

    Chamberlin worked his socks off, covered a ton of ground and did some nice dribbling, but his penchant for turnovers and misplaced passes is really worrying (most of which were when he really wasn’t pressured).

    Really like what Campbell has been doing, very smart with the ball, has great vision (would like to see him in the middle in place of Ozil instead of Chamberlin) and continued great work rate.

    Finally, was very interesting to see Iwobi brought in when all season long Gibbs has been the sub for the left midfield position.

    Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0

    • Positionally I think Ramsey was off. He needed to stay deeper and allow Ox Walcott and Campbell to run at stoke and make late surging runs into the box. He was too high up the pitch on many occasions resulting in massive holes in the middle of the park. I don’t know how many times i counted the middle of the park empty because Ramsey was near the strikers.

      Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  19. Mordor is no place for handsomeness, we tried but our midfield is weak for now and it’s a big worry.
    Hope Le Prof will find solution to it pronto.

    Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  20. One less minute and those two games would have been a real success but now we are left to ponder what could have been,Overall the games against Pool and Stoke were wrecthed horrible showings but they are now gone and we are still top the only comforting thing about it all ,now we need to get players back on form because today showed that some of our pivotal players a way off form,it will impossible for us to win the league performing this abjectly for the remaining 16 games,we need some serious spark to the team.

    Thumb up 10 Thumb down 3

  21. Very good point. Surprised with the low scores Blogs.
    In previous years that was a 2-0 defeat, we showed good resilience at a ground that is difficult for us every season.
    Big players soon back, no new injuries and three trophies still up for grabs. We can do this. COYG

    Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  22. Harsh rating on theo. I think there was absolutely no help from the midfield and he was the only player trying to make things happen, running at the defence, switching flanks.
    At some point btw 60-80mins giroud looked like he was hiding from the ball, I expected a giroud/elneny sub with walcott up top and ox back to the wings – a different approach.. But maybe I’m just one of 6billion coaches..

    Thumb up 13 Thumb down 42

    • Walcott needs to get a run at striker as he is having little to no impact on the wing (esp the left wing). Just does not get involved enough and on the left side won’t dribble up the line to use his speed as he would on the right side. He can’t really make the runs into the middle because Giroud is so static. I think we were at our best offensively this season when Theo was striker and pulling the defenders out of position in the middle with his runs while Sanchez and Ramsey ran in behind.

      Thumb up 14 Thumb down 17

    • Yeah, really surprised by the negative Walcott comments considering everyone else’s performance. Would like to see him do a bit more on the ball. When he dribbles at people and makes forward passes, he really makes things happen. He focuses too much on his off-the-ball game at times. And Giroud didn’t have a good game either (though in fairness, had a lack of service from midfield).

      Thumb up 6 Thumb down 18

  23. Such a shame Chamberlain form is so off. A period I was really hoping for him to kick on. Little confidence and nothings comin off at the mo.

    Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  24. Been saying this for a while now, and will keep saying it; Ramsey works best with a Deep-Lying Playmaker than a DM like Flamini. Covers his weaknesses.

    And Theo to the bench.

    Thumb up 15 Thumb down 7

  25. Theo run ! Your speed is your best assert. Everyone around shouted run so much during match. Two sprints in 90 minutes is not enough. ! No running both too track back and to join with others on counter attack. Jogging over half way. On the plus side took care to just wack ball away when defending corners , not trying to dribble ball out. Do there is some learning there.

    Thumb up 16 Thumb down 3

  26. I thought the ox at least showed for the ball. We all know when stuff is not going to plan it’s hard to get going. He is in a bit of a rutt but thought he was one of the few that looked to get involved. Theo needs to take a hard look at himself. A point at that lot is no bad thing. Top. Let’s push on.

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  27. A deep-lying playmaker would require a holding midfielder (DM) beside him and Ramsey isn’t as ‘defending’ as you’d like. So I struggle to see your point there sire

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  28. The midfield. Is lacking. As Ramsey always presses. Today often alone. So you have Ramsey pressing the Stoke centre backs. Flamini just in front of b.f.g. And chamberlain. FGloating around. Too spread out our midfield . So Stoke if had more quality can. Pass in the gaps. And spaces on pitch. glad they didn’t.

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  29. Serious question here, how many points did Chec saved us till now?. We need steel nerves for next 16 matches hopefully we will improve with all the injured players coming back. Ozil, Sanchis,& Chec are key hope they stay fit till the end

    Thumb up 11 Thumb down 1

    • I think it might be the Southhampton Lemon Effect. Young players look great there and then become the absolute definition of mediocrity when they are sold for high prices. Today’s game showed us Walcott, Ox, Klein, Lallana and Schneidelein. Add in Lovren and (maybe) Chambers and you have some seriously expensive Lemons ripping off the league. We need to stop buying them.

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  30. We would have kicked their ass if Ozil was playing today as we missed his creativity and vision in midfield. The Ox and Theo were poor today, in hind sight playing Iwobi from the start and Ramsay in the number 10 role may have been a better option.

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  31. Criticising a mf’s creativity shorn of ozil, Cazorla and alexis seems pretty harsh at a ground where I think all the top sides have lost this season.
    Also I thought Walcott was through and wrestled down. Even if not a pen, it should have been a red and us vs 10 for the last half an hour.

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  32. They wanted a scrappy game, lots of fouls and a ridiculous amount of time wasting, with Johnson’s double failure to grasp the ball for a throw-in the best example. I personally think we had a lot of individuals trying to make things happen, but with a lack of movement…Ramsey & Ox were ahead of everyone for me, ref was awful though!

    Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  33. Ox’s form is terrible with other options should not be starting however he always shows desire and commitment and I wish the lad well, Campbell never stops and would much prefer to see him on 1 wing and Sanchez on other as Theo is so lack luster it’s frustrating that such a talent only gives 30% when on the wing because his not in his favourite position like a child brought the wrong colour bike! Giroud is doing such a good job at min, Walcott is not going to start upfront! Now played on the left so he can use his pace or cut in to strike with his preferred foot the world is his oyster, I named my son Theo for him to be a disappointing role model!

    Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  34. I’m frustrated by the lack of lightning runs by Theo and Hector outflanking ordinary defenders. In training they race each other and apparently could beat Boult. Woss ‘appening?

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  35. Decent point away from home against those classless slags. Shame arseblog and most commenters are continuing this narrative about how bad ox and Theo were. I mean they weren’t great, but cech aside, was anyone? Campbell had a good game but does that mean he has to be a stick to beat the others with? We’re top of the league lads, top of the fecking league. Get behind the team for fucks sake, stop supporting this idea that we have the shittest fans by being, well, shit.

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  36. I didn’t think the game really suited Theo today, different Stokes for different folks.

    Sad to see the Ox looking so out of sorts too, love him. Part of me thinks a lot of its in his head/confidence. Theres no Stoke without fire.

    Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  37. I was initially highly disappointed with that today but in the cold light of day, bearing in mind no Ozil, no Sanchez, no Coq, no Cazorla, I’ll take a point.

    Wasn’t happy with our sloppy passing however. Must do better.

    Campbell was top draw again, Monreal and Bellerin had solid games, Giroud worked tirelessly, Ramsey had moments and Cech was MOM for me. His 2nd half display got us that point.

    Walcott looked really pissed off when subbed off but that’s just a classic example for me on how many occassions he appears not to understand football.

    He was terrible, and his work rate even worse. So hit and miss, and more miss at the moment. Not good enough from a 27 year old who’s been at the club a decade now.

    And as for Ox – he’s still a young man so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt but I’m becoming increasingly alarmed by his percieved lack of football nouse. The raw ingredients are there but his lack of football intelligence, often technique and defensive understanding is a real worry. Sometimes a player that looks so good at 17 fails to develop as he threatened to. I’m slightly concerned this could be the case with chamberlain.

    But we come away with a point from the edge of the World.

    If we’re going to win the league we’ll need to improve but today there were some mitigating circumstances.

    3 points a must now against the scum from west London.

    Thumb up 17 Thumb down 1

  38. I love the Flame but I hope we don’t have to see him play with Ramsey again. They just don’t work together, I’d love to see Elneny start against Chelsea.

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    • I thought about this also but in the end I think it was wise for him to hold him out. Throwing Elneny in the deep end against those thugs after only a couple of days practicing with the team would have been too great a risk. We need him fit and confident for the run-in!

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  39. Easy to say in hindsight. Stoke away is baptism by fire and Wenger is probably just protecting his new investment.
    Not a great game but this fixture last season was 10 times worse.
    How many pts has Cech saved us this season?
    We are still top of the league.

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  40. Altough Arteta has played pretty bad so far,I think that he would suit better to Ramsey than Flamini.Flamini is like mint tea-nor that it will harm you,but it won’t heal you as well.Nobody of our midfielders was willing to pick ball from skippers and pass it around,so Koscielny tried with some risky passes that could lead to their goal.

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  41. Iwobi ahould be ahead of the ox and theo in the pecking order. Pitty that they did not take the chance when mid field big guys are out injured. When cazorla, coq, alexis and ozil are back, i think ox and rambsey goes to the bench, walcott goes on loan.

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  42. All good comments above about individual performances; I’d like to add that I still have no confidence that Wenger will lead us to any honors. Why he continues to play Walcott at all, or allow Ramsey to play all over the pitch are both good examples of his neglect of tactical fundamentals. Another example is Chamberlain, that played very well last season on the right flank before injury. When he was ready to return he could not get any game time due to Wenger forcing Ramsey into that position while Carzola and Coq dominated the midfield. In Wenger’s world Ramsey must play unless he is seriously injured, so Chamberlain knows these brief appearance are short lived. He has not played well and some of that is down to infrequent appearances. One final complaint, is about Rosicky. Last season, Thomas was healthy for long periods of time (#10 for Czech Republic’s qualification for the Euros) but often was in the stands. I doubt he will see any time now that he’s back in practice. He could contribute more than Ramsey I guarantee.

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  43. Most remarkable stat for this match:
    Number of cards issued: ZERO

    As for the vaunted English core of Theo, Ox, Gibbs, Jack: the only one who would and should be in the starting eleven, when fit, might be Jack as the box-to-box midfielder. As for the others, they seem to have one thing in common — consistently inconsistent (or as Theo puts it, “Consistent in patches”) with a propensity to do the wrong thing at the wrong time.

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  44. As hard as it is to find positives (other than Cech’s virtuoso display) we are having a bit of a bad spell guys.
    Lets not look to make any excuses or shoulder the blame on any of the lads. We all have bad days at graft. Such is life.

    You take a few key pieces out of the structure, said structure can weaken.
    We were that structure today.
    We battled hard to try and make things happen, but its not easy when things don’t seen to be going for you. Heads can go down easily and it can spread like the plague.

    I think if we had gone a goal down early doors, it would have been the kick up the arse we needed. I think sometimes, we tend to play better after going a goal behind, strange as it may seem.

    We could have nicked it today with the Giroud chances. Decent saves from Butland.
    But (and I am not at this level obviously) I am a striker and I was taught from around the age of seven, that when you are point blank facing the keeper, you put it in the easiest place for you, and the most difficult place for him.
    This is in-between the keepers legs.
    Its very simple.
    If you try to go around the keepers arms at close range, he has the advantage.
    The same applies with his legs. The keeper has the angles covered.
    Even if the keeper looks to not open his legs before he sets himself, you roll your foot over the ball and feint to shot and in the same motion the keepers legs open & before you know it the ball is in the net. Its just instinct to me now.

    This is where Giroud should have put the ball. It was the was the easiest place to put the ball.
    I’m not slagging Giroud here. I’m just stating the obvious from a strikers mindset.

    Only other thing I can make as a positive, is the fact that we aren’t playing well, but we are still not losing. Mainly due to Cech today.

    Dust ourselves off & go again.

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  45. Bellerin has dropped off a bit recently and can’t seem to cross anymore , Walcott couldn’t dribble past a statue, Ox cannot play in midfield with passing like that, Rambo is being a bit hit or miss.

    Monreal, Giroud ,Campbell and Cech were the only ones pulling their weight today, we are letting our lead slip and need to pull our selves together, this league is there for the taking!

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  46. I think its reasonable to be disappointed with the result but it bears thought to consider what the narrative might have been if we won on the Joel Campbell chance or the Giroud chance or a penalty. Perhaps I am wrong but I think we’d have been raving about how we, without Ozil, without Alexis, without Coquelin, and without Cazorla, won that game at the Britannia in the dead of winter. Similarly, if when in October time people were beginning to see how crazy this season had been and coming up with the claims that ‘it is now or ‘never” in terms of Arsenal winning the league, if you told them in January our midfield would be so battered that we’d be up in the Britannia relying on the Ox, Campbell, and with Flamini fighting it out in the middle, and Iwobi to come on to make the difference, I think we’d have watched ESPN classics for the season instead, writing this one off.

    With that in mind, while I am personally disappointed with the result, I am less disappointed with this then I was with the manner in which we drew to Liverpool. I think against Stoke we dealt with them pretty well considering our central midfield. No question that we need results, but if they come soon then I think we’ll be looking at this game as a point well earned considering our deficits.

    Next up is Chelsea, however, and as a home game I am looking at that as an absolute must-get three points. Unless the drama queen, mike dean, gets an opportunity for the limelight, then I suspect 3 red cards for being bitten by diego costa and chelsea being allowed to play the game with twelve players… lets just hope its not him… again… and that this draw marks the end of a threadbare period in which we’ve done pretty well considering some said the league title was off.

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  47. Iwobi ahould be ahead of the ox and theo in the pecking order. Pitty that they did not take the chance when mid field big guys are out injured. When cazorla, coq, alexis and ozil are back, i think ox and ramsey goes to the bench, walcott goes on loan.

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  48. I really hope that Wenger keeps Campbell in the starting 11 over Ox and Walcott once Sanchez is back. He deserves to start. Every game he seems to get better and better.

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  49. How quickly a player becomes great when he is not playing. Cazorla played all games in November remember when we were toothless and predictable. I think Walcott was main problem yesterday as he gave the midfield no useful outlet. I thought the Ox played well in patches but agree his head goes down too quickly when a pass goes astray. I blame the supporters for this as they are too quick to destroy one of our own. It is very reminiscent of Ramsey who never played nearly as bad as so called fans would have you believe, but it became self fulfilling. It is going same way with the Ox. He will undoubtedly become a better player than Campbell. I just hope it is at Arsenal.

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