All entries by this author

Arshavin - Reminder of the Russian Genius (Video)

Jan 5th, 2009 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

For anyone who hasn’t seen much of what Arshavin can do since we saw him sparkle in the summer; here is a video to remind yourself. As much as I would prefer a solid centre back and a defensive midfielder right now, I am not so sure it is coming. Arshavin’s name has been flying about and Wenger hasn’t denied it yet as he has with Inler.Lets see how it goes. Watch this space.

New Year, Football in the Context of Mankind, Economic Gloom and Obamas 2009

Jan 1st, 2009 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

By Bilal ZaidiGood afternoon to you all (or good morning to some) on this fine New Years Day. I hope you are not too trolleyd, wasted, gazebod or paninid (what ever word for PISSED you prefer) that you do not understand what I am writing. It is the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 and at times like this, like many of you I assume, I see it as a time of reflection for myself personally and a chance to set goals for the coming year.I would like to thank every reader of this blog for their comments and support in 2008 as well as wishing you all a very happy new year. It is only though the magnificence of modern technology that such a website could exist and bring together so many people from around the globe who share a common passion. There are 195 countries in the world and this website has been lucky enough to have been accessed by visitors from 184 different countries worldwide. However, it is only though your input that such a website remains dynamic and full of vigour. For this specifically, I am very grateful.What this blog and similar websites represent on a small scale is collective contribution and a common interest. Metaphorically, it would be beneficial if the mentality of mankind could be likewise in looking past our differences while sharing and embracing our similarities.We finish 2008 at a time where the world is in a state of economic crisis, innocent people are being killed on a daily basis and as football fans; our Arsenal team has not met our expectations of a top European club. However to put Arsenals problems in the same context as those other problems is obviously highly offensive.It is disrespectful to those civilians including young children and woman being massacred and starved in Gaza as I write this. To those even in the West (where I live) being affected negatively by the worldwide recession, those who have been made redundant, those who may have struggled to purchase their children the presents they wanted this Christmas and those elderly people who have to sacrifice heating because their pensions are not covering their costs adequately. We are all going through turbulent times but it is at these times where our character is tested.This is the time to give to others, a time to be selfless and try our best to collectively progress as humankind. I am blessed to be living in London with a family and people that love me dearly. I hope that if 2008 has taught us anything at all, it is to cherish and truly appreciate what is positive in our lives.It is also crucial to note the importance of football here. Yes it is just a game like my mum always says but football is universally beautiful in that it brings happiness to billions across the globe. It builds a sense of community at a grass roots level and keeps many children away from trouble.I said in the second paragraph that this website is metaphorically bounded by collective contribution and a common interest. I hope that we can all have a common interest in 2009 to do as much as we can and collectively contribute to promote peace in the middle east, the root of many problems in the world today. For those of you in London there is a Stand up for Gaza Peaceful National Demonstration (here for more details) this Saturday at Embankment. If you have a chance please do watch this touching documentary on the history of the conflict that has been going on for decades. It is an award winning documentary called Occupation 101 (watch it for free at Youtube or Google Video).I look forward to seeing any of you interested at the demonstration with our Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Atheist, Hindu, Buddhist and any other brothers and sisters with whatever faith they have with the common interest of promoting peace and reducing suffering.To end on a positive note, 2008 has also been a historic year. To offset the negativity of the Credit Crunch and other hardships; Barack Obama became the first black man to become the president (president-elect for the moment) of the most powerful country in the world. We are all very lucky to be present at a time of such historical importance.It gives us all hope of change for the better in the coming 12 months where things can only get better in all sense of the word. Just as January could be the month Arsenal and Arsene Wenger finally sort out the problems of the past and take a step in the right direction, I hope Barack Obama can do the same.I also want to say congratulations to a very humble young man in Gavin Hoyte who went to school with me for winning a chance to go on loan to Watford, as well as Jay Simpson who is off to West Brom and Nacer Barazite who has extended his loan at Derby. Good luck to them all.Happy new year to all. Make 2009 your year and achieve whatever it is you want to achieve.Please share your new years resolutions if you wish in the comments section.Viva Le Arsenal.

10 points off top 12 points from relegation zone How To Measure Quality in Football?

Dec 26th, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

By Bilal ZaidiAston Villa 2-2 ArsenalYou may have noticed from the lack of posts…the world of Arsenal FC now really just PISSES ME OFF; talking, watching, hearing…anything really…PISSES ME OFF. Yet I still manage to keep getting myself to watch every second of every game and read every Arsenal article that is written. So many things are obviously wrong with the team and yet have not been addressed to a sufficient standard for a prolonged period of time.Todays game marks a significant point in this season. Lets be honest, if we were Aston Villa we would be annoyed that we didnt get all 3 points from a game that was dominated by the home side. The first half statistics say it all. Villa 7 shots…Arsenal 1 shot…1 goal. How often has that happened to us in the past?The whole game was Villas apart from a 20 minute spell at the end of the first half and beginning of the second. The story of the game was:Woodwork 3 times…lucky bounce…nice finish Denilson… a moment of brilliance from Diaby to offset his general pathetic performance to make it 2…back to Villa pressure…Gallas penalty…Barry 50th goal…inevitable Knight equalizer in injury time.All we had to show for the game was a determined goal keeper and a world class right back (Sagna for President).Well done to Villa, they showed they are a real side today.The title of this article is not to suggest we are going to get relegated but is simply to illustrate how far off we are in comparison to the league as a whole. The quality of the side has been weakened season after season; players have left and not been replaced. People blame the centre of defence for leaking goals but yet do not realize that the creativity of the side is as weak as anything else nowadays. We have never had the best defensive players in the world (under Wengers modern times) but we used to defend well as a unit. A lot of that comes down to the midfield. Wengers philosophy has always been that the best form of defence is attack, keeping the ball means the opposition cannot score.As much as I want the likes of Song and Denilson to succeed and do not want to put blame on them personally…it is obvious to see that they do not do enough to be playing week in week out. The centre of midfield in my opinion is the most important part of any team (apart from Bolton) since it is the only part of the team which defends and attacks as well as being a source for inspiration, creativity and is one of the only positions that can set the tempo of a game. Flamini is a perfect example of this last season.Fans boo Eboue yet do not boo Wenger who plays him on the left wing (that game he got booed). They do not boo the manager who last season had three very solid defensive midfielders in the team (Gilberto, Flamini and Diarra) and yet did not replace them when they left…expecting the dynamic of the team not to be effected. I am not at all saying to boo Wenger, I was one of the first to say boo-ing Eboue was disgusting…but please stop pointing fingers at individual players and see at the end of the day Wenger is the man in charge, he takes 70% of the blame. The board has done nothing wrong so they are not accountable as other clubs are (eg. Spurs and Real Madrid). 30% of blame goes to the collective performance of the players which is a matter of commitment and effort. Not TALENT and QUALITY…you cant blame a player for not being good enough, only blame the manager for judging a player good enough when they are not.I love Wenger as much as any other Arsenal fan but he is only human, he has made mistakes yet a human still has the ability to correct his mistakes. But Wenger is as stubborn as any manager in world football, he is the president of our football club and makes all the decisions…he takes most of the blame. The board let him do as he wishes and that has been rightly earned over an amazing Arsenal career as manager.However, every human is fallible and if Wenger again refuses to sign players in January there will have to be a point where something has to be done. YES we drew with Liverpool, beat Manchester United and Chelsea…but losing to Hull, Stoke, City, Villa etc means something is not right.People say that our results against the big four show we are good enough, do possess enough quality…that is not the measure of quality that I think is the correct indicator. Consistency is quality in a league. In a cup competition, then yes your on the day performance is a valid measure of quality. That is why Liverpool can win the Champions League but have not won the Premiership in recent years. They have spark players like Gerrard and Torres who have real quality and can on the day win any team a game. Unfortunately, our Arsenal team is looking more and more like a poor version of the Liverpool team that won the Champions League but needed Uefa to change the rules to allow them to play the next season over Everton.Quality in football is consistency, collective drive and a winning mentality as well as talented players throughout a squad. I will leave it up to you, the reader, to ponder as to what extent we possess any of those characteristics as a collective squad.Oh yeah…Merry Christmas. Santa bring me a defensive midfielder and a sane manager for Christmas.

The Best of Third Eye

Dec 7th, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

Bilal is excited today with youtube video’s so here is another one for you football lovers.Good day. Back to reading 372 pages of strategy.

Arsenal Cross Bar Challenge - 2007

Dec 7th, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

Random stuff…fun times from 2007.

Chelsea v Arsenal - Player Ratings

Dec 1st, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

By Atishay AgarwalAlmunia - 5 - I think it finally is time to give young Lukasz a fair trial. Almunia was quite consistent, despite never being outstanding, last season, but has been making a number of mistakes over the last two months. Jens’ distribution used to be quite fantastic, and led to a number of goals, whereas Manuel hands it back to the opposition on a number of occasions. Poor throw to try and find Nasri which led to the own goal, when he could have easily kept the ball for a few seconds while everyone regrouped.Sagna - 7.5 - He’s been another of those players who have failed to live up to last season’s performances, but he put in a wonderful shift at the very ground he scored his first Arsenal goal. Wasn’t too involved in offensive play, but defended superbly and made a number of vital interceptions.Gallas - 8 - Just the kind of performance we know William Gallas is capable of. And it looked like it helped him that his partner was the taller Djourou, rather than Toure or Silvestre. Facing hateful reactions from Chelshit fans and under pressure from certain Gooners as well, he proved that he’s still committed to the cause.Djourou - 7.5 - The (-5) is for the own goal, as his performance alongside Gallas was imperious to say the least. I was so pleasantly surprised that even after going behind, Chelsea rarely even threatened our goal, and that’s down to Djourou and Gallas. He attacked high balls ever so well and was dominant in the air, which allowed Willy to mop up behind. A very promising performance.Clichy - 7.5 - Based purely on his first half performance, I would have given him a 5, as he was a bit jittery and made a number of poor clearances, but his second half performance was reminiscent of last season’s, as he was solid in defence, and also forayed forward effectively. Sensational run after the second goal until he was brought down blatantly by Ivanovic.Denilson - 6 - I really don’t want to criticize him much as he was being played out of position, and although he fluffed a few passes and lost the ball occasionally, he worked his socks off. Provided the assist for RVP’s first goal as well, and like Wenger would say, he has a “good engine”.Fabregas - 7 - Cesc put in a solid, controlled performance yesterday. He did nothing very flashy or outrageous, but kept it simple, held the ball up and passed it around well in difficult situations. Who knows, captaincy might just help him regain his magical form of last year.Song - 6 - Well, I’ve surrendered to the fact that Wenger believes this boy will make the cut at Arsenal, and although he didn’t do much to justify Wenger’s faith in him, he did no wrong either. He didn’t win the ball too much, but he kept hassling and pressing the Chelsea players, passed much better than he usually does, and provided a bit of height at the back.Nasri - 5.5 - He still doesn’t seem to have gotten the hang of the Premier League as yet, and that’s probably due to the fact that he’s never played as a winger before. Again, like Song, he didn’t do anything wrong, but wasn’t that great either. But that’s not what we expect from a creative midfielder. Was also lax in not tracking back to mark Bosingwa for the first goal.Van Persie - 8.5 - Will this performance FINALLY see the true arrival of Robin Van Persie? He’s been there and thereabouts for 2-3 seasons now, and he must take the confidence from this game to push his game to the level it should be at. He shot twice from his right foot last night. That’s right, TWICE, and the second effort resulted in the equalizer. The second goal was pure class, as he didn’t even look up before cracking a low drive across goal into the far corner. My Man of the Match, and who would disagree?Adebayor - 6.5 - More than his performance, I think the fact that he started the game gave a lot of confidence to the lads. He worked hard as usual, but there was no end product, except the wonderful cushioned header to set up RVP for the winner.Subs:Bendtner - N/A - I think Wenger made the right decision in bringing a striker on for a striker, as we didn’t lose our shape. So many times he takes off the strikers and brings on midfielders, and it never helps. We kept playing the way we normally do, and Pinky almost set up Denilson for a third goal.

Title wide open following weekend results

Oct 27th, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

By Richard PoppleTitle wide open following weekend results:After the first 60 minutes of yesterday’s game at Upton Park I had a horrible sense of déjà vu. Our recent record at the hammers has been poor despite winning there last season. It seems though, like last season we have found a way to win ugly. Defeats to Hull and Fulham aside, Arsenal have been very impressive in the league this season and solid wins at Blackburn, Bolton and now West Ham suggest we will be very much in the mix at the end of the season. Manchester United’s form remains surprising indifferent and they were lucky not to lose at Goodison yesterday and Chelsea’s defeat really put the cat amongst the pigeons. The ending of their amazing unbeaten home record will shake Scolari’s men and it will be interesting to see how they react. Liverpool were very good yesterday and remain the only side unbeaten. It seems remarkable given the fact that they have beaten both Manchester United and Chelsea, but I still don’t see Liverpool winning the league. They have had to come from behind several times already this campaign and they will not be able to keep that up should it continue to happen. Liverpool seem very strong at the moment but I still can’t see them finishing top of the pile.Adebayor’s impact yesterday when brought on was a timely reminder of his ability. He has been in fairly indifferent form this season but has shown signs recently that he is up for the fight again. I think he will start against Spurs as he tends to score against them. It was interesting when Wenger admitted over-using Ade last season. I think this is true but his hand was forced slightly by injuries to RVP and Eduardo. If these two can stay fit for most of this season we will surely see a fresher and more effective Adebayor. Bendtner has improved his all-round game this season as well and is a very handy option when we have bruising opposition. His pass for Adebayor’s second yesterday was sublime and indicates his growing maturity. I hope we see Vela a lot more against Tottenham and Stoke this week. I think he might even start with Ade on Wednesday.Another impressive performer yesterday was Alex Song. Denilson has been promising so far this season but in my opinion remains lightweight. Song is anything but and gave Fabregas greater license to roam yesterday which was the secret to his success last season. I hope Song retains his place and continues to improve. Diaby is also pushing for a starting place and might oust Nasri on Wednesday who looked a little tired against West Ham.As for our returning Captain, well I think he played very well and formed a solid partnership with Silvestre who looks better with every game. Toure will not find it easy breaking back into the team, which can only be a good thing. With the remarkable turn of events at White Hart Lane on Sunday it will add extra spice to the Derby on Wednesday. Spurs will be relieved that they won yesterday which takes the pressure off Redknapp as no-one expects them to win. That could prove dangerous to Arsenal who must retain yesterday’s grit and discipline to ensure we remain in the hunt.

LIVE EPL FOOTBALL STREAM: Chelsea v Liverpool, West Ham v Arsenal, Manchester City v Stoke, Tottenham v Bolton. Wigan v Aston Villa

Oct 26th, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

Watch the live streams from our LIVE VIDEO STREAMS PAGE: Chelsea v LiverpoolWest Ham v ArsenalManchester City v StokeTottenham v BoltonWigan v Aston VillaFollow the link and choose which match you would like to view. Open in internet explorer for live stream through the webpage. Download sopcast if you haven’t already.

Player Ratings - Arsenal v Kiev - Sent From Mobile Phone

Sep 19th, 2008 | Source: Arsenal Review | Category: Latest Arsenal blogs

Atishay Agarwal usually sends over his player ratings after every game but his lack of internet connection in India has meant he soldiered on and sent it via his mobile phone instead. Good effort Atishay. So for authenticity (not laziness)…I have left any spelling mistakes/format etc as it was sent.By Atishay AgarwalManuel Almunia - 6 - As has been the case so far this season, hewasn’t really tested with many shots on target, especially withBangoura’s crazy shooting. I hear some of those balls are stillorbiting Earth as we speak. Our new No.1 gave away the direction ofhis dive too early on the penalty, though.Bacary Sagna - 5.5 - I agree completely with the lad that it wasn’t apenalty, but he should know better than to stand behind his man in thepenalty area with his hands around him. Otherwise too, he had a mediocre game.Kolo Toure - 6 - He did well for most part of the game, barring aslightly shaky phase in the second half. Helped restrict theirforwards to shots from distance.William Gallas - 5 - Okay, i know i might get a pasting for this,considering he scored the equalizer (which would have gone in withouthis touch), but it was his schoolboy-ish error that led to theirattack before the penalty. Even after the goal, his defending was verypoor for the next fifteen minutes. Everyone is now going ga-ga overhis leadership qualities because he scored in the dying minutes, butbeing the captain, he needs to cut down on the costly errors he makesevery now and then.Gael Clichy - 5.5 - He had a poor outing, and was caught out ofposition many times. Should have done better to prevent the crosswhich led to the penalty as well. In short, both our fullbacks are yetto rediscover their form of last season.Theo Walcott - 7.5 - We’ve often been criticized for not putting up afight when facing ‘roughing-up’ tactics, but Theo did more than justfight, he stood up and and set up the equalizer in the dying minutes. Was clearly targeted bytheir left back just like Reyes was by Neville a few years back, thedifference being that Theo’s got the stomach for a fight.Denilson - 6 - The young Brazilian is somewhat of a mixed bag at the moment, with one iffy performance following every good one. he was a shadow of the player he was at Ewood Park, and could soon lose his place in order for Song to get a decent run.Cesc Fabregas - 5.5 - Well, he doesn’t look himself at the moment. Either he’s carrying an injury, or he’s too tired. In all, he looks jaded, and not even half as involved in general play, or even goal celebrations, as he used to be. Half an hour into the game, my friend asked, “Where’s Cesc?” That says it all.Alex Song - 7 - I wanted to see him play a full match, and I was impressed. I think he has the qualities that are required for a CDM, and he gave a very good account of himself in Kiev. Got stuck into challenges, and kept it simple with his passing and movement. One could immediately see that we were more susceptible defensively once he came off. Want to see him start an EPL game now.Robin Van Persie - 7 - To be fair to the lad, he was placed on the left wing, not the position he usually plays in for us, so it was never going to be a classic Van Persie performance anyway. What impressed me was his commitment to the cause, and that he kept trying right till the end. He needs to get the right shooting boots on though.Emmanuel Adebayor - 6.5 - Again, like Van Persie, tried all he could throughout the game, and could have got on the scoresheet, if Gallas hadn’t literally snatched his goal! Anyway, he still misses chances like he did last season. But he gets so many that he’s bound to score many. Good effort.SubsEmmanuel Eboue - 6.5 - Was on for just twelve minutes, but gave us a little more pace in attack.Nicklas Bendtner - 5 - He didn’t do much to be honest, and needs some more playing time to get his confidence back.Carlos Vela - NA - Cant rate him for just two touches, can I?