Arsenal v Schalke 04 (24.10.12)

Another match day! With great excitement I leaped out of bed this afternoon (remember I work nights) after just 5 hours of sleep, donned my AFC Jersey + Scarf over my PJs and prepared to go GOONER as AFC hosted Schakle 04. Just as MSG stopped annoying me with Erik Wynalda the screen changed and we got the camera panning across the starting XIs. There they were all ready to fight and… wait, is that … CRAP! It’s Aaron Ramsey again. No problem we’ll just, wait, he’s on the wing??? Giroud‘s sitting, Gevinho is center, and Aaron Ramsey is on the right??? Surely this is a joke right? Have we conceded the match before the coin toss? So AW is sitting in press box, management duties passed on to Bould. I’m sure it was something like:
AW: “Here’s the roster, the starting XI and whom you can sub and the time the sub is to be made.”
SB: “…”
AW: “Do not, under any circumstances actually do anything other than follow this list and do what it says.”
SB: “…”

Surely this HAD to be the pre-match plan because anyone, and I really do mean ANYONE, could see that we were going no where. Arsenal within the first 20 minutes had something like 78% possession with 0 shots on goal. Anyone could see that Aaron Ramsey and Santos were not meant to be on the field and were going to be the reason we would not win. 20 minutes is a liberal amount of time, but if you could not see Aaron Ramsey and Andre Santos as the weakest links then you must have been watching the Piano Cat on youtube.

So at the half AFC had 80% possession, 4 shots, 0 on goal. S04 had 20% possession and 4 shots, 1 on goal. Normally I end up muting the matches because the commentating is terrible, but the two today had it down as far as Santos was concerned. The guy just is NOT a defender. Not in any sense of the word. If I had been S04’s manager I would have taken one look at the AFC Team Sheet and the first thing I’d have written down to exploit was Santos‘ offensive, aggressive mentality, and especially is laziness in getting back on the counter. As for Ramsey I would just have someone playing off him a few yards as he is happy to give the opposition the ball without any effort or pressure.

For 80 minutes we were forced to watch in absolute boredom as AFC masterfully passed the ball around the center circle, being sure to give Mannone his touches, but making absolute certain the ball never went near the S04 18-yard-box. I’m just stunned that it took 75 minutes for the first sub to be made. I was expecting Santos or Ramsey off as they were clearly the weakest players on the pitch, but it’s Gevinho. Ok, I can understand that to some point, but surely pulling Ramsey and moving Gevinho out to the wing would have made more sense!

1 minute after the sub is made Huntelaar puts in the go-ahead. The goal, from a poorly cleared ball right in the middle of the 18 was headed between Vermaelen, Mertesacker, and Santos. Huntelaar put it away beautifully.

Ok, shake it off, get some good players on the pitch we have two subs left, and you know who I want off. @#$% Arshavin & Gnabry… For Poldi & Jenkinson!?!?!? What the heck is going on? Jenkinson has been one of our only solid backs! Poldi is the hardest working player on the pitch… Well if it wasn’t clear we conceded the match before the coin toss Steve Bould was shouting it in my ear while riding a uni-cycle around my living banging a tambourine while a monkey kicked me in the nuts.

I love this club, but I can not for the life of me figure out what they are thinking or where they are going. No scratch that, I SEE where they are going and I can’t believe GOONERS out there support Arsene Wenger as the pilot of this sinking vessel. Wenger is old, cold, and covered in mold. His tactics may have been superb at one point but believe me he has been studied and his weakness have been exploited. When you can’t beat the 3rd worst team in the league, a team that until they beat you hadn’t won a match, then you have worries. Arsenal have worries and I fully rest the blame on Stan, Peter, Ivan and Arsene. They collectively have to go. The sooner, the better. I hear Jose wants to come back to England. 8 years is a long time to rest on laurels.

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