Archive for March 22nd, 2009

22
Mar
09

Newcastle 1-3 Arsenal; the Good, Bad and Ugly

Match Reports

ESPNSoccernet: Michael Owen could not prevent Newcastle from slipping deep into relegation trouble as Arsenal closed the gap on the Barclays Premier League’s top three with a 3-1 victory.

Telegraph: Newcastle in grave danger of being relegated as Arsenal run riot.

Match Video

The Arsenalist always has the freshest match videos. They are piping hot today, try them with some butter.

Man of the Match

Bendtner played well and scored an excellent goal which led the Telegraph to name him MotM but I couldn’t quite rate him that high when I though van Persie played so damn well. If Steven Harper hadn’t made 1/2 dozen excellent saves on Robin, he would have been the consensus MotM but as it happened Robin only set up the two goals that blew the doors off the match.

So, for his part in swinging the game in our favor I’m giving Robin van Persie the award.

The Good

Bendtner had a very strong game and came within a whisker of getting his first Man of the Match award from me. I’m going to assume that his header was intentional despite the fact that he typically couldn’t score in a morgue. Since we’re assuming it was intentional then it has to go down as one of the best headers I’ve ever seen: falling backward, floating in the air, he nods the ball over his head and into the top corner — an unsavable header.

Arshavin had a strong game as well, introduced to English “football” by the likes of Steven Taylor, all he did was fight back shake Taylor off and damn near score an amazing long range shot. He did make the box score since he’s the player who put the ball on Bendtner’s head. He now has a goal or an assist in each of the last 5 games — games in which Arsenal have scored a total of 15 goals. To say that he’s crucial to our success over the last few weeks is pretty much the understatement of the year.

Finally, a shout out to Almunia who’s penalty save was critical in keeping some distance between Arsenal and Newcastle. Though he still refuses to command his box his reflexes are absolutely top notch and when he’s brimming with confidence, as he is right now, he’s one of the best keepers in the world.

The Bad

Mark Halsey had a nightmare as lead ref. How does he see Steven Taylor look up, see Arshavin bearing down on him, and intentionally elbow the Russian in the face and not even give a yellow? I’m also completely shocked by the penalty decision. I think he awarded the penalty because he felt like maybe he should have awarded one earlier for Damien Duff’s dive. That’s the only thing that makes any sense. Either way, the fact that the only player given a yellow card was William Gallas is an embarrassment and he should never be allowed to referee a match in the EPL again.

The Ugly

Steven Taylor is a cunt’s cunt and I hope he gets syphillis on his injury. End of.

Conclusion

Arsenal head into a two week international break 16 matches on the trot without a loss. In fact, Arsenal haven’t lost a match since Manchester City beat us 3-0, back in November. Amazing stuff.

And now we come full circle. Our next match (April 4th)  is that same team who last beat us. All signs point to a strong Arsenal team just getting stronger: Cesc and Adebayor are expected to be fit and even Theo Walcott might be fit for that match.

Damn it feels good to be a Goonah.

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