Before the Match
Wenger gave his press conference yesterday and had to spend a lot of time quashing rumors. First, he is saying that Gallas is Arsenal quality and can stay as long as he likes. Pshhhs — sure, he’s a decent player, I just doubt he can keep his head. Whatever, so long as he doesn’t get in the way of Arsenal’s progress that’s fine, keep him on. Now, if Citeh comes knocking and offers millions, I say take it.
Second, Wenger spoke about the Cesc to Milan/Citeh/Barca/blah blah rumors and said that Cesc is committed. I’ve never believed a single rumor of Cesc moving, probably because he’s always been quick to shoot them down and unequivocal about denying them. So yes, he’s obviously committed. Just so long as he’s not Robbie Savage committed we’ll be fine.
Finally, Wenger reiterated his desire for video replay and basically said that he’d rather not beat Chelsea with an offside goal. But as he points out, there have been several ocassions that come to mind where Arsenal have been the recipient of a bad call which led to a goal. So, either you institute video replay or shut up.
Arsenal: Almunia, Sagna, Toure, Djourou, Clichy, Denilson, Fabregas, Song Billong, Nasri, Van Persie, Adebayor. Subs: Fabianski, Vela, Ramsey, Silvestre, Wilshere, Bendtner, Eboue.
Wigan: Kirkland, Taylor, Boyce, Bramble, Figueroa, Valencia, Palacios, Cattermole, Melchiot, Heskey, Camara. Subs: Kingson, Kilbane, Koumas, Brown, Zaki, De Ridder, Kapo.
Hmmmm… That’s a strong lineup for the Arsenal and a bit of a weakened lineup for Wigan. Lets put this one away early so that Zaki can’t come in late and rescue the points.
I can’t wait to see how Fox Soccer Channel (FSC) displays the midfield lineup.
Time for ham and eggs be back for kickoff.
I should post the “Upgrade” picture everytime that commercial comes on.
1′ — Woo hoo! Come on Arsenal!
7′ — Cattermole doing a good job policing the midfield, come on boys get stuck in.
10′ — The announcers are calling Cesc’s late tackle a yellow card. Please, he didntouch the man. Bramble jumped out of the way, that is in no way a yellow card.
11′ — Bramble slides in on an onrushing Denilson, very late… there’s your yellow. I realize I’m sensitive to this but it seems like the announcers always see the Arsenal foul and never the opponent… In fact, the douche just called that a “good tackle” on the replay. Yes, it’s a good tackle when you take out the man just so long as you get a piece of the ball. RIGHT???
16′ — Ball drops in the box and Adebayor puts on a clinic in finishing. Pay attention Bendtner, that’s how it’s done.
19′ — Wigan fouls three Arsenal players and no call… this is now getting old. Oh hey, look, the ref has a chat with Cattermole who was caaught holding Sagna on a break away, everything is even now, right?
22′ — FREE KICK!!! I FEEL LIKE ARSENAL JUST WON THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE!
23′ — This is just out of control, van Persie is tripped in the box and the annoucers say “he’s stumbling there.” Of course, no call. I’m not going to talk about it any more it’s driving me insane.
26′ — Tackle from behind. WHEEE YELLOW CARD. I lasted all of 2 minutes.
29′ — Arsenal are responding to the physicality of Wigan, someone is going to get hurt.
32′ – Ok, I turned the announcers off, as Eboue warms up to replace Nasri. We haven’t had Eboue for a month and I haven’t missed him in the least.
42′ — Toure and Djourou are doing pretty well at the back and Clichy looks like a new player now that Gallas has been stripped of the captaincy. He looks, more… confident?
45′ – Adebayor nearly scores a second after Kirkland gets a great fingertip save and the announcer says that a second goal would have been hard on Wigan. Uhhh… the only thing “hard on” Wigan is this guy. It’s pretty disgusting, but then, they cut away to the studio and the talking head there says something similar… maybe I’m watching a different match?
Huh… Oh well, second half over here.