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Arsenal
April 27, 2010
Posted by David Young on 04/27/2010

There is nothing much to say about Saturday’s match against Manchester City because nothing much happened. It was possibly the dullest game that Ashburton Grove has seen in its short history.

With nothing to play for, Arsenal lacked the passion and impetus to turn their possession into goals. City, who do have something to play for, seemed content with a draw. The hapless Lukasz Fabianski kept a clean sheet, largely because he had nothing to save. Such was the impotence of the visitor’s attack that Mikael Silvestre had what could be described as "a solid game" at the back.


Theo Walcott Attempting Something ©Getty Images
April 22, 2010
Posted by David Young on 04/22/2010

At the end of my last post I said that the players needed to show pride and professionalism in their remaining performances of the season. Well, there was precious little of that on display in the final ten minutes at Wigan last Sunday as the Gunners squandered a two-goal lead to slump to a humiliating 3-2 defeat.

The match itself wasn’t much of a spectacle but, having got themselves into a winning position, there can be no excuse for throwing it away in the manner they did. Credit goes to Wigan for not giving up but their first goal came courtesy of some lackadaisical Arsenal defending. The second was yet another Lukasz Fabianski howler. Charles N’Zogbia’s winner was a goal worthy of winning any game but the Latics should never have been allowed to get anywhere near landing such a knockout blow.


Eboue's Demeanour Says It All ©Getty Images
April 17, 2010
Posted by David Young on 04/17/2010

It has been a rough few days following Wednesday night's defeat to Spurs at White Hart Lane. Not only did we have to witness the last embers of our season go up in smoke but, on returning to our places of work and local pubs, Arsenal supporters had to endure jubilant gloating from any Tottenham fans that they might happen to know. Still, it took Spurs over a decade to beat the Gunners in the Premier League, so I suppose it is understandable that they were happy with the victory.

For Gooners though, it was a painful evening. Losing to our fiercest rivals, even in friendly matches, is always a bitterly jarring experience. They might not have been able to match us for honours over the past twenty years but North London Derbies still have an edge that clashes with Manchester United and Chelsea just don’t. There is a very personal hatred between the supporters of the two clubs that stretches back nearly a century and, sadly, this time Arsenal got on the wrong end of the result.


RVP's Long-Awaiting Return ©GettyImages
April 7, 2010
Posted by David Young on 04/07/2010

Last night, a four-goal Lionel Messi master class put paid to Arsenal's Champions League adventure for this season and sent Barcelona to the semi-finals. The young Argentinian might have had a relatively quiet match at Ashburton Grove last week but on home soil at the Nou Camp his ruthless finishing won the match and the tie for the home team.

Arsenal had started the game well enough and, when Nicklas Bendtner made a silk purse out of Theo Walcott’s sow’s ear of a cross to score after 18 minutes, life was breathed into dreams of winning the game. All hopes were soon dashed though when Messi equalised with a dazzling drive three minutes later and then went on to notch a hat-trick before the break.


Bendtner Momentarily Keeps the Dream Alive ©Getty Images
April 5, 2010
Posted by David Young on 04/05/2010

Nicklas Bendtner's winning goal in the depths of injury time against Wolves at Ashburton Grove on Saturday not only kept Arsenal’s title hopes alive but also - and so very importantly in the short-term - kept the team’s momentum rolling ahead of the trip to Barcelona on Tuesday night.

After the thrills and spills of the home tie against Barca, it was inevitable that Saturday’s home game against Wolves would be subject to a bit of a Champions League hangover. The Gunners enjoyed the majority of possession and created plenty of chances but couldn’t find a cutting edge until the big Dane got on the end of Bacery Sagna’s cross to steal the three points in the 94th minute of play.


Bendtner Nicks It ©Getty Images
April 1, 2010
Posted by David Young on 04/01/2010

Twenty four hours, a few beers and a long lie-down in a dark room later, it is still difficult to process the whole gamut of emotions that were run watching last night’s match against Barcelona. It was an encounter that had almost everything football can provide as a spectacle.

Inside the stadium we experienced the terror of the first half as Barcelona totally dominated the opening stages, the relief of reaching half-time without conceding, the disappointment of Ibrahimovich’s two goals, the hope that Theo’s strike provided and the joy and relief of Cesc’s equalising penalty. When the final whistle came everyone knew they had witnessed an astonishing game of football. Thierry Henry was the last player to leave the pitch and he received a warm reception as he made his way to the tunnel. On other days his homecoming might have been a talking point but, after witnessing the previous ninety minutes, it was barely more than a footnote to an evening that will live long in the memory.


Almunia Heriocs Keep Arsenal Afloat ©Empics
About
David Young Sam Limbert: My retirement as a football player came at the age of 14 due to being rubbish, it's fair to say I was more Kaba Diawara than Thierry Henry, so I turned my focus to writing about the game. I'm a lifelong Arsenal fan and have been lucky enough to watch the team across England and Europe. My favourite Gunner of all time is Dennis Bergkamp, and the 2004 Invincibles is the greatest side I've ever seen in English football. I try to be positive about the Arsenal as it's the hope that keeps us going! Follow me on twitter @SamsMatchReport.

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