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The Prologue

Actually, he didn’t say anything of the sort, thank heavens, because if he had, maybe I would have been. In fact, although I’m sure he was a quiet admirer of the Arsenal, he never really said that much about football at all. So his offer to this childhood Barnet fan of a trip to the Arsenal – the actual ARSENAL ! – was met with a fair amount of surprise and a huge amount of excitement.

That first ever visit to Highbury, under the floodlights and with the buzz of that huge crowd, rendered me a Gooner for life – although the original members of that band of fellows came a while later – but in a fairly small minority in my school, where most were “Lilywhites” fans, ahem. Fortunately for my mum and dad, if it even existed then, I was unaware of the rest of that particular moniker. Even then though, at such a young age, it was special – the rivalry and hatred of ‘that lot’, whether in a playground five-a-side or a FA Cup semi-final.

Greaves, Smith, Chivers, Gilzean and Sheringham have long since given way to Gascoigne, Lineker, Bale, the traitorous Adebayor and Bentley, and now even ex youth player and still Arsenal fan (😆), Harry Kane. All Spuds, all resented, but probably none more so than con man Kane with his dangerous backs and cheating dives, all apparently within the laws of the game if you happen to be an England “hero”.

Here’s a bit of fun featuring a song about Harry Kane, a tribute to their striker who goes down easier than a whore’s drawers on a Saturday night in Kings Cross, although the whole video is pure classical Spursyness. How fitting it should be written and performed by two Tottenham stalwarts bangin’ one aahht on the old Joanna – Wallop ! He’s Gone Down !

(apologies, there may be an advert to clear but it’s worth it)

The Local History

This game is happening at the Emirates and we all know about Highbury, so here’s a little bit of possibly lesser known local history about Tottenham.

Tottenham, as a locality, has existed for over a thousand years, and a quick visit will suggest that much of the original area still stands. The original settlement was owned by a farmer named Tota, and Tota’s Hamlet was mentioned in the Domesday Book. It developed into Tottenham and was sited along the old Roman road, Ermine Street, some of which is part of the present A10.

From the Tudor period onwards, Tottenham became a popular recreation and leisure centre for wealthy Londoners. Henry VIII is known to have visited Bruce Castle (Bruce Grove) and hunted in Tottenham Woods. The area remained semi-rural and upper middle class until the late 1870s.

In the 1870s the Great Eastern Railway arrived, with branch lines from Enfield and Walthamstow, and the area’s low-lying fields – the often referred to Tottenham Marshes (Marsh Dwellers) – and market gardens were rapidly transformed into cheap housing for the lower middle and working classes, who were then able to commute cheaply to inner London.

The area has had a difficult relationship with authority from the Tottenham Outrage of 1909, to Broadwater Farm in 1985 and the Tottenham Riots of 2011. I never enjoyed going to White Hart Lane and running the gauntlet out afterwards – even when I managed to get in for our League clincher in 1971 but had to watch as a stabbed Arsenal fan was passed over our heads to get to medical assistance. Our team, on the other hand, seems to have quite enjoyed the short trip to N17, winning the league on their ground more times than they have !

This year though is supposed to be a momentous one for the Spuds as they always, ahem, win the League in years ending in “1”. This year, of course, is 2021 and they are craftily placed in 7th position, all ready to overhaul Man City who are sitting precariously a mere 23 points ahead with 11 games to play. Of course, the whole “always” win in years ending in “1” is such a load of nonsense, as a glance at the Holic clock at the top of this blog will tell you. It is now, in fact, a mere 59 years, 10 months and counting since they last won the First Division in 1961.

It bears no repeating – oh, yes it does ! – that the poor, success starved followers of Middlesex have never even seen TV footage of their win in colour – because there isn’t any ! Grainy black and white was all there was in those days – 8 years before the first moon landing, 10 years before the Floppy Disc, 13 years before the Post-it Note and 18 years before the Sony Walkman.

But things, well some things, change. Spurs now have a new stadium with a massive gold cock erected on the roof, and a miserable little grey cock installed as their manager. The stadium houses the longest serving hatch in the world; a whole brewery with beer served in bottom filling glasses which hilariously empty themselves over the fans’ trousers when they poke around trying to see how they work; a cheese room; an under floor, slide-out American football pitch, but …….. no trophy room ! That may be because they have long given up hope of actually winning anything ever again, or it may be due to fear of a repeat episode from earlier days at White Hart Lane, when thieves broke in and stole the entire contents of their trophy room. The two rolls of blue and white carpet were later recovered by police.

The Match

The first competitive match between Spurs and the Arsenal took place on 9th November 1896, and resulted in a 2-1 home win for the Gunners in front of a crowd of 2,000 people at the Manor Ground in Plumstead, South East London, where we resided from 1893 to 1913, leading up to the move to Highbury in that year.

Since then there have been 202 games between the two clubs with Arsenal having won 82, lost 66 and drawn 54. From November 1999 to January 2008, the Arsenal managed a run of 21 games without defeat to the LWCs, but things have evened up somewhat since then. Suffice to say that in this most up and down of seasons, it is vital that we win this one. A confidence boosting good hiding for them would be nice, but this really is a case of any scrappy win will do. No suicidal, dangerous, unnecessary overplaying out from the back, just a solid, sensible, pragmatic win.

Last week’s VAR adjudications awarded Tottenham 2 extra points by giving them a penalty for booting the ball against a Fulham defender’s arm which was pinned to his body, and denied us an absolute stonewall spot kick when Pépé’s effort hit the arm of Eric Pieters, whose arm position suggested he was waving to someone in the upper tier of the stadium. The result is that we come into Sunday’s game in 10th position with 38 points, while Tottenham lie 3 places and 7 points above us in 7th with 45 points.

The Teams

The second leg of the Europa League tie against Olympiakos awaits just 4 days after this one, and remains our best and realistically only chance of Champions League football next season. That must surely have some influence on Mikel Arteta’s selection but exactly what that will be is tough to predict. Calum Chambers was last week’s surprise pick, and he did well at Burnley. The right back position could see another change with Bellerin, who worked hard on Thursday, being held back for the return. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mari back alongside Luiz at the back, as good as Gabriel was, with the latter also kept fresh for next Thursday. ESR will probably start on the bench as he is just back from injury, so Odegaard will retain his place. Partey should start, Xhaka seems inevitable, and while I would play Saka on the right and Pepe on the left, Arteta will almost certainly continue with Willian.

So, my almost certainly wrong guess at a starting eleven is:


Cedric, Luiz, Mari, Tierney

Partey, Xhaka


Saka, Aubameyang (or Lacazette), Willian

Tottenham – no idea and, honestly, who cares ? Just give every one of them hell for ninety minutes and win.

The Holic Pound

bet365 are offering 31/20 on an Arsenal win, or 12/5 on the draw – bwin will give you exactly the same odds. If you are a new customer with William Hill, they will offer you 25/1 on Aubameyang (or Kane, don’t you dare !) to score, but only if you add the £1 stake to your other bet. There’s always a catch !

The Officials

It’s sad and indicative of the influence that officials now have on results, that they can merit special mention. However, the referee will be Michael Oliver, 4th official is Kevin Friend, and Tottenham’s 12th man, sorry, VAR will be Paul Tierney and Lee Betts. I was quite surprised to see that in all competitions with Oliver in charge, Arsenal have won marginally more games than we’ve lost – 16 wins, 11 draws, and 14 defeats.

Kickoff is at 16.30 UK time. TV coverage is on Sky Sports. Seating is available behind a sofa near you.

Enjoy, Holics 🤞🏻

115 Drinks to “My Old Man Said Be A Tottenham Fan ………….”

  1. 1
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:


    Just a very swift one in preparation for tmoro… I haven’t even read your post yet Trev!

  2. 2
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Excellent stuff Trev! I really enjoyed that. So many highlights, and you got Chas and Dave in there. Nicely done.

  3. 3
    bathgooner says:

    Nice one, squirrel! 😉

    A fine ramble through the history of that low-lying, malodorous, cess-encrusted spot and of our record against its troglodyte villains.

    I don’t think MA8’s starting eleven will be very different from your selection. I would rest Saka for Pépé but suspect he will probably feel that he needs our young wizard’s creative contributions more in this match than in the second leg against the Greeks. I do expect him to start the captain and Willian and hope he follows your example and succeeds in sneaking Lacazette on in brackets to give us a 12 vs 11 advantage on the field to compensate for VAR’s contributions.

    Any kind of win will be delightful. The likelihood of that will of course be considerably enhanced by us ditching the self-destructive passes in and around our box. I shall be watching from behind the couch.

  4. 4
    TTG says:

    Great preview Trev . It’s always good to read your stuff, a great combination of footie good sense and humour . I suspect the relative comfort of our position in the Europa will mean Arteta prioritises tomorrow over Thursday. But Saka, Tierney and Auba will play because they are indispensable and Xhaka because he’s …Xhaka .
    I’m going to say we will prosper 2-1 but it will be a wild ride

  5. 5
    Doctor Faustus says:

    A most amusing, informative, quotable, entertaining preview Trev! Worth the re-read.

    I agree with you that for reasons known only to Arteta himself he most likely will still start Willian before Pépé. I think Saka too deserves a little break. The speed of his quick mazy runs with the ball has now become almost half of what it generally is. He is just nineteen! Have we not learnt anything from the Jack Wilshere experience?

    ESR seems to have completely recovered. And well rested. A front four of ESR behind Auba-Laca-Pépé will be my preference. Laca plays well against the LWCs and having two excellent finishers in Auba and Pépé cutting in on both sides with Cedric and Tierney running behind to receive through balls from ESR will give the typical man marking strategy they use a good test. Especially given ESR’s elusive floating around in the half-spaces.

    Come on Arsenal!

  6. 6
    Countryman100 says:

    Trev. A learned, informative and funny preview. I would have expected nothing else. This game feels like Chelsea on Boxing day. Nobody gives us a price. But we’re going to do them. I have faith in Michael Oliver ever since that night at Old Trafford when he sent off Di Maria and Danny scored the winner in front of me and 9,000 other Gooners. The Marsh Dwellers have been bumming their chat all over social media. Let’s send them back to Middlesex with their tail between their legs and let’s get St Totteringham warming up.

    Oh to be there tomorrow. The first home Derby I have missed in many a year.

  7. 7
    Goonersince54 says:

    Classy pre match post Trev
    Thoroughly enjoyable read.
    A couple of stats to add re our propensity for self destruction.
    Since the start of the EPL, 2 Clubs are way out in front for goals conceded from defensive errors.
    It was a surprise to me that both of them are lining up in the NLD tomorrow. !!
    Our Neighbours lead the way with 120, closely followed by us with 118.
    Pool are a distant 3rd on 102.
    But since 2017 we stand alone in the shoot yourself in the foot stats.
    Most errors leading to goals, 35.
    Most pens conceded, 23.
    Most red cards, 14.
    How many points we have cost ourselves doesn’t bear thinking about, and if we carry on in the same cavalier fashion tomorrow against Kane and Co, we could be in for a very long afternoon.
    With Chelsea drawing and Everton losing today, Maureen’s lot have a great opportunity to really close the gap on the top 4.
    Whether this will lead to them playing with a more attacking mindset away from home, will become clear when the teams are announced.
    Their away form in recent times has been pretty poor, but they certainly have found their goal scoring touch recently, albeit against some pretty poor opposition.
    One other stat worth a mention, is that in local Derbies, apart from the one on Merseyside, ours has the most draws down the years.
    We haven’t managed to beat them in our last 5 encounters, and given they will be the fresher of the 2 squads after a home midweek EL game, I am leaning towards a draw as our best option tomorrow.
    A win would in my humble opinion, be a very welcome surprise.
    To close,
    Dorset Mick,
    If you get to read this,
    Hope your treatment hasn’t left you too debilitated, the 6 months must be close to the finish by now, and I hope the results are positive.
    Take care

  8. 8
    Osakamatt says:

    Great preview, thanks Trev.
    Like you I don’t care who they
    pick as we’ve become quite good
    at nullifying opposition threats,
    except our own of course.
    I think we will see a few changes but
    I’ve no clue who. Personally I’d start
    Hector, Rob, Luiz and KT in defence
    with Pepe, Laca and Willian up front.
    ESR would be AM and Thomas with
    A.N. Other in midfield as it’s important
    for him to get some derby experience.
    Rest Saka and Auba and bring them
    on to nick it in the last 30 minutes.
    I would like to see Martinelli start
    really as I think the game would suit
    him but MA has been hesitant with
    him so far. Temperamentally, it should
    suit KT too, and if I was going to bet
    I think it would be a speculative one
    on him to score and us to win 2-1.
    Just win.

  9. 9
    bt8 says:

    Great stuff Trev. As for Betts, the name of the assistant VAR referee, at least his surname gives us a clue as to the motivation of any bizarre VAR decisions that may be made. I do take reassurance where I can find it. COYG

  10. 10
    ksn says:

    Thanks for a fun but informative preview, Trev. This match is going to be really tough and if we don’t win today it will be the first time we played six games against Spurs without winning. We haven’t beaten them in the last five meetings (2 draws, 3 losses) and it is time to set the record straight. They have a very good pair of strikers in Kane and Bale and have been scoring for fun in recent games, which is surprising for a Mourinho team. They have pace up front in Son and Maura and a decent midfield pairing in Hojberg and Lamela. Any Mourinho team is defensively well organised and I expect them to sit back and hit us on the counter. So we will have a tough time in defence and attack. The one thing going for us is that we don’t have much to lose as we are not in the running for top four though Spurs still have a chance, which should get us playing freely. Hoping for a win but keeping fingers crossed. COYG.

  11. 11
    Steve T says:

    Cheers Trev

    Just win the game. Absolutely no Burnleyiacos moments please???

  12. 12
    Dorset Mick says:

    Excellent preview, Trev. I will start the game on the sofa, but will undoubtedly join you in the seating behind at some point! A 3-2 win at 28/1with bet365 for me.

    Let’s hope that we bring our “A” game. Despite losing both my spud-loving brother and my spud-loving dad over the last 18 months, I still find that this is the most important game of the year for me, and would gladly swap an implosion on Thursday for a win today.

    Clive, thanks as always for the kind thoughts. Am finished with chemo, but results were unfortunately a bit like Arsenal’s this season!

  13. 13
    Uplympian says:

    Thanks for an excellent read Trev – informative and entertaining at the same time.
    I am still scarred by them winning the double in 1961. To come across any spuds at that time was not a pleasant experience- their swagger went way beyond normal levels for such an achievement. From being respectful enemies to detestables has not diminished in the intervening 60 yrs ( now when did they last win the league? ).
    Today’s encounter has added vim as The Detestables now have a manager also fitting that description. Should we lose I will immediately switch off the tv as it would enhance my gloom looking at The Gloating One.
    With everyone fit ( mark that down in our diaries ), Mikel has good choices to be made. Forget next Thursday v Olympiacos, from a supporters perspective this is a match that requires our very best team on the field. What he decides is best team is open to discussion of course. They effectively like to play long balls over the top ( route 1 ? ) with their fast forwards running past a static defence. We should play our 2 most mobile centre backs
    ( Gabriel & Luiz ) and like wise our most mobile forwards ( Auba, Saka, Odegaard, ESR ) as they also have a fairly static central defence.
    With everything crossed, no defensive brain farts and fair officiating then a 2-1 to the good guys. Any win however will do of course. COYR

  14. 14
    Trev says:

    Many thanks, all, for the kind words and interesting comments.

    Thanks to Clive also for his shoot-yourself-in-the-foot analysis – quite shocking.

    Dorset Mick – good to see you, and please accept my sympathies for the loss of both your dad and your brother. It’s been a terrible time to suffer such a loss, whether caused by the virus or not. Take care, Mick.

    And finally, as suggested in the preview, please do take a look at the digital clock at the top of this blog – and then take another look at the image just above it – and on North London Derby day, remember the great man we still all miss so much.

    Cheers, Dave ! ❤️

  15. 15
    Goonersince54 says:

    Very sorry to hear about your Dad and brother Mick, but even more sorry that after enduring 6 months of chemo, the results have not been what you were hoping for.
    Not sure what your options are from here, but if there is a God, hopefully he’s a Gooner and he has a miracle to spare.

  16. 16
    North Bank Ned says:

    DM@12: Condolences on losing your father and brother. Terrible losses. Everyone in the bar will be hoping you can pull through, too. Stay strong.

  17. 17
    bt8 says:

    Dorsey Mick. All my best to you as it sounds like you’re rolling with the punches at the moment. Hoping an Arsenal win will put a smile on your face. 🙂

  18. 18
    North Bank Ned says:

    Excellent preview, Trev. Your stamp is indelible. It is telling that from the Romans onwards, roads were built to get you through Tottenham, not to it.

    As others have said, any win will do today. But it must be a win.

  19. 19
    bt8 says:

    Fun quiz and I only missed the professional darts player

  20. 20
    TTG says:

    Firstly my thoughts and prayers with you Dorset Mick . Your results might be a bit like Arsenal’s but like last season they come through in the end ! So sorry about your personal loss too. Football is a great family bonding experience. My mother collapsed a couple of days before we clinched our last title at White Hart Lane and I watched the game with my father while she was in critical care . It massively took the edge of what was a wonderful football moment but when we saw her after the match the result lifted her enormously. We lost her eventually and for my Dad his bond with and interest in Arsenal got stronger if possible . I made sure I watched as many matches with him in the time he had left . I’m finding like Uply the quite unjustified Spud swagger is back just as we read Kane is considering leaving to go to a big club where he can win a trophy . Let’s send him on his way with a Gooner triumph today

  21. 21
    OsakaMatt says:

    Me too bt8. Completely forgotten about

  22. 22
    bt8 says:

    Great pass by Danny Welbeck for Brighton’s match winner at Soton.

  23. 23
    Esso says:

    Leno, Cedric, Luiz, Gabriel, Tierney, Xhaka, Partey, Smith Rowe, Odegaard, Saka, Lacazette

    Subs: Ryan, Bellerin, Chambers, Holding, Elneny, Ceballos, Willian, Pepe, Aubameyang

  24. 24
    Countryman100 says:

    Auba left out due to a disciplinary issue according to Arteta.

  25. 25
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Sheffield Utd doing well without Wilder…

  26. 26
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Countryman @24.

    I wonder what the story is there. Very odd.

    He’s still on the bench though.

    Laca is always up for Spuds though so fingers crossed.

  27. 27
    Steve T says:

    No PEA due to disciplinary reasons? So why is he on the bench then?? No Martinelli in the squad??? It would be nice to know what is actually going on.

  28. 28
    TTG says:

    Arseblog reveal the S***s team –
    Sp*rs: Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker, Wanker

  29. 29
    Dorset Mick says:

    Cheers to all for your kind words, they truly are greatly appreciated. This last year has been hard for everybody, and there are many, many millions of folk worse off than me.

    Sorry to hear that Auba isn’t starting, we really need our best line up to make sure we beat these mugs.

  30. 30
    Bathgooner says:

    Thoughts with you, Dorset Mick. Fingers crossed here for the best possible outcome.

  31. 31
    Osakamatt says:

    Strong side though I’m not a
    big fan of ESR on the left.
    Cedric back. Lots of options
    off the bench.

  32. 32
    Steve T says:

    Auba. On the bench because of disciplinary reasons. You’ve been a very naughty boy. But if we’re struggling we might bring you on if we need a goal???? I really don’t get the logic of that at all???

    All the very best Mick. Keep smiling buddy.

  33. 33
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:


    I’m sending you all my beat wishes.

    It’s true many others are struggling but that doesn’t make any of the individual situations any better. I hope The Arsenal give you something to cheer today!


  34. 34
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    I’m nervous now.

    I hope we don’t do anything silly today.

  35. 35
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Me @33.

    ‘Best’ wishes, obviously. Bloody spillchucker

  36. 36
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    England have decided to Spurs up the T20 match.

  37. 37
    Bathgooner says:

    I guess it’s a pointed demonstration that dressing room rules apply to the captain just as much as they do to eveyone else. I have to agree with that. We’ve had too much of a favouritism culture in recent years. The minimal sanction of being benched rather than sent home suggests the offence is minor e.g., late to the pre-match team talk or failure to observe a pre-match curfew.

    It can only make today’s match more difficult unless it has a galvanising effect when he is brought on to snatch the coals from the fire!


  38. 38
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Steve @32.

    It does seem odd. Although it is not really possible to make any assessment without actually knowing the circumstances

  39. 39
    Steve T says:

    If Auba has broken protocol that requires him to be dropped, then I have no issues with that whatsoever. But if that’s the case then why is he on the bench? I would love to know the thought process behind that? Put him on the naughty step, unless were struggling??? Hardly disciplinary measures is it? What happens if Laca gets injured in the first 5 minutes? He will play virtually the full game?

    I really don’t get that at all?

  40. 40
    TTG says:

    Willian was not dropped after naffing off to Dubai in a pandemic.
    So it must be something sexual .

  41. 41
    Steve T says:

    As a result he’s looking incredibly motivated in the warm up?????


  42. 42
    Bathgooner says:

    Arteta clearly knows that this team needs the option of Auba up front if we are struggling especially with Martinelli missing from the squad entirely. The offence must have occurred or been discovered in the last few hours because Arteta said he was going to be in the team. I approve of one rule for all. I also approve of not cutting off your nose to spite your face!

  43. 43
    ksn says:

    DM, sorry for your loss and hope your health improves here on.
    Watching the match will be tough, already chewing my fingernails.

  44. 44
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:


  45. 45
    gedo says:

    C’mon boys three points

  46. 46
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    The louder you scream, the faster we’ll go…


  47. 47
    Steve T says:

    Auba looking incredibly pissed off sat in the stands? I wonder how motivated he feels right now???

  48. 48
    Osakamatt says:


  49. 49
    Bathgooner says:

    Good start. Keep it up. Stay focused.

  50. 50
    scruzgooner says:

    cedric making son do the defensive work today.

  51. 51
    Bathgooner says:

    OOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooo! ESR. Unlucky son.

  52. 52
    ksn says:

    ESR hits the post, unlucky.

  53. 53
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    So unlucky ESR

  54. 54
    scruzgooner says:

    we’ve got to win this!

  55. 55
    ksn says:

    Spurs are sitting deep as any Mourinho team against Arsenal does and booting long balls for Son and Maura to chase.
    Son appears to have done his hammy and Lamela replaces him.

  56. 56
    scruzgooner says:

    get out, son!

  57. 57
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    Apparently Auba left out because he was late today. Not for the first time. So he has done something bad enough to warrant reprimanding (as any other player would be) but not something bad enough to shoot ourselves in the foot by leaving him completely.

    Personally I imagine he will take the decision on the chin and be hugely motivated to come on and score.

  58. 58
    ksn says:

    Laca misses one. We have missed so many.

  59. 59
    ksn says:

    They are winding up Xhaka and I hope he doesn’t fall into the trap.

  60. 60
    ksn says:

    Spurs (Lamela) score. They are good at shooting.

  61. 61
    ksn says:

    Very unconventional but it looks great when it comes off. For all our good play we are behind.
    Even the commentators have come to life.

  62. 62
    Steve T says:

    We are our own worst enemies at times.

  63. 63
    ksn says:

    Cedric hits the post and Laca doesn’t latch on to a good chance in front of goal.

  64. 64
    ksn says:

    Regulion booked for hacking down Saka.

  65. 65
    ksn says:

    We have dominated them but they are ahead. Such a travesty.

  66. 66
    ksn says:

    Odegaard!!!!! 1-1.

  67. 67
    gedo says:

    Yes yes yes

  68. 68
    Bathgooner says:



  69. 69
    ksn says:

    At half time tied 1-1.

  70. 70
    Bathgooner says:

    Øde! Øde! Øde! Ødegaard! Ødegaard!

  71. 71
    Countryman100 says:

    Pat, who sits behind me on the North Bank always says “give us a bobbly one!”. Well we just obliged.

  72. 72
    ksn says:

    We could have been two or three goals ahead with some luck. Still plenty to play for.

  73. 73
    scruzgooner says:

    we played a hell of a first half. esr and tierney have a great understanding down the left.


  74. 74
    Gunnersaurus Stunt Double says:

    We did absolutely everything right that half.
    The team selection, tactics, the execution from the players, all of it was brilliant.
    A masterclass from Arteta.
    The only reason we are level is that they have been very lucky and we have been very unlucky.

    Now go on and do them!

  75. 75
    Steve T says:

    The least we deserve is to go in at the break level, but we do need to be more clinical. We’ve had the majority of the play, created loads of chances but not made Lloris work.

    Looking very dangerous down the left of must say, but we suffer with the lack of creativity centrally.

  76. 76
    ksn says:

    Odegaard lights up
    The North London sky
    With his sizzling left foot!

    Hides his head in embarrasement.

  77. 77
    Bathgooner says:

    Now finish the job Arsenal.

    No free gifts to the Marshdwellers.

  78. 78
    ksn says:

    Saka replaced by Pepe.

  79. 79
    Steve T says:

    Pepe for Saka???

    The battle of the left footers is on

  80. 80
    ksn says:

    Penalty as Laca brought down. VAR looking at it. Penalty stands. Laca rolls it in!!!!!?
    2-1. Yeah.

  81. 81
    gedo says:

    Laca BOOM!

  82. 82
    ksn says:

    Mourinho left wagging his finger and shaking his head.

  83. 83
    Steve T says:

    Excellent stuff. Very much deserved. Now let’s just make sure.

  84. 84
    ksn says:

    Lamela finally booked. He and Hojberg have been fouling all day.

  85. 85
    ksn says:

    Kane near our box looks so threatening, he almost delivered a perfect cross. That was close as Deli Alli almost got to it.

  86. 86
  87. 87
    ksn says:

    Kane’s brutal assault on Gabriel goes unnoticed but Lamela throws an elbow and gets a second red. Deserved it, the dirty fuck.

  88. 88
    ksn says:

    ESR goes out and Willian comes on. ESR played so well and unlucky to not score.

  89. 89
    Steve T says:

    Lamela. Xhakaesque in his decision making

    ESR has been outstanding today.

  90. 90
    ksn says:

    Partey gives away a needless corner. We have become less assured in our play the last ten minutes.

  91. 91
    gedo says:

    What are we doing ffs

  92. 92
    ksn says:

    Xhaka needs to tone it down as he is booked going into his second rash challenge.
    Kane scored but he is offside. Thank God.

  93. 93
    Steve T says:

    Let’s not get sloppy. Too many loose passes, especially Partey.

    Still feel we need a third here at times…

  94. 94
    ksn says:

    The tempo of our play has changed after ESR was taken off.

  95. 95
    Steve T says:

    Spot on ksn. I was just about to say the same thing.

    Since ESR has departed we have lost our composure.

  96. 96
    ksn says:

    Definitely need a third, Steve T. It is still too tense and with a guy like Kane in the opposition anything can happen.

  97. 97
    ksn says:

    Laca off, Elneny on.

  98. 98
    ksn says:

    We have given away a free kick with Kane poised over the ball.
    Kane hits the post and we almost gone done in. Gabriel blocks off the rebound. That was very close.

  99. 99
    Steve T says:


    Get a bloody grip.

  100. 100
    ksn says:

    Arteta looks so nervous.

  101. 101
    ksn says:

    Maura gets another free kick right in front of our goal just outside the box. Kane poised again but hits it up and out. Phew!

  102. 102
    ksn says:

    Yes, yes, North London is red again. First victory for Arteta over Mourinho whether as player or Manager.
    Very happy.

  103. 103
    gedo says:

    Discipline enforced and Arsenal win. Arteta a smile from ear to ear.

  104. 104
    North Bank Ned says:

    Never let it be said we do anything the easy way.

    But it is a win. And a win over the neighbours. And over Mourinho. A trifecta in my book.

  105. 105
    ksn says:

    We are definitely the better team, more creative and for seventy minutes looking more assured than Spurs in defence too.
    We are still tenth in the league table but only four points away from spuds (would have been two but we were robbed against Burnley).

  106. 106
    North Bank Ned says:

    Lamela is a nasty piece of work. Red thoroughly deserved for a succession of nasty fouls.

  107. 107
    Steve T says:

    Excellent three points, but we don’t half make it difficult for ourselves at times.

    Dominated the game but we need to be more clinical. KT and ESR we’re excellent down the left hand side. Odegaard is getting better with each game. Luiz and Gabriel were excellent at the back.

    Great win.

  108. 108
    scruzgooner says:

    not one of ours should do aught but hold their heads up high on today’s game.

  109. 109
    North Bank Ned says:

    Overall we were value for the win, even if closing out the game from the 80th minute on meant there wasn’t even standing room behind the couch. I have to say that VAR did us a favour with the penalty. Laca had sliced his shot before he got taken out.

  110. 110
    Bathgooner says:

    A game of 75/90 and 15/90. We bossed it for 70-75 minutes just like old times despite conceding a flukey goal to an undeserving varmint. Then when we take off the young man who joins all the bits together and was so unlucky not to open the scoring, we fall to bits and almost throw it away against 10 men. My anger at our feeble late efforts has subsided and I’m guessing that tired legs and tired minds from the trip to Athens caught up with us in the last 15 minutes.

    ESR especially was outstanding along with Xhaka, KT3 and Saka. Great pass from Pépé for the penalty but what a feeble effort to score by Laca. Good pen though. No change in our league position but we are closer to the Europa League pack.

  111. 111
    Goonersince54 says:

    Only 110 posts after a big win over the mob down the road. ??
    Baffling to say the least.
    I expected 200+.

  112. 112
    Steve T says:

    I couldn’t agree more Clive. I couldn’t agree more.

    Let’s be honest, it’s not as if we’ve had bucket loads of success this year. A victory against the Middlesex swamp dwellers would have resulted in chaos and jubilation in days gone by.

    Big love and hugs to you all.

  113. 113
    Doctor Faustus says:

    Completely outplayed them. Like the old times. Just blew them away except for the goals that we are not still scoring enough of. ESR, KT and Ødegaard were excellent, Laca had a poor performance in front of the goal but otherwise did fine. Cedric was good too, taking Saka off was a good decision as he was tired and on top of that getting clattered as usual. Pépé did a few good things including the pass that earned us the penalty despite Laca’s air shot …

    Luiz, Gabriel, Xhaka played with lot of maturity and control. Partey had some good moments but he continues to have problem when pressed rapidly in tight spaces … he just expects a bit more time. He will come to speed of this league in a while …

    That ESR shot so deserved a goal … what a gem of a player!

  114. 114
    North Bank Ned says:

    I was watching the game with a German commentary, my habitual Serbs not being available. When ESR came off, the commentator simply said, ‘Super spiel von Smith Rowe’, which captured his performance in a nutshell.

    Half time brought Jurgen Klopp doing an ad for a German asset management company. It involved him staring out of a window a lot. Daydreaming about last season, perhaps.

  115. 115
    Pangloss says: