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    Sunderland have lost their last 4 games in a row, conceding 11 goals in the process. We might have some key players out and be on the back of a ****ty loss, but after Utd's result tonight I'd hope the players have the added drive to go on and put in a performance where it really counts. Apart from City's effective bus parking, we've won every league game at home since the shocker against Spurs and I can't see this one going differently.

    As for tomorrow night, I'd keep it semi reserve - we should comfortably get through without risking any of the big names who aren't currently injured. The psychological impact of losing the CC like that shouldn't be too bad on its own, but, seeing as our position in the 2 other cup competitions is going to be tested in the next couple of weeks, I'm worried about the impact of going out of all three. I can only see us going out against Barca with all the injuries piling up and for the same reason I can't see us winning at OT a few days later. We should put everything into the Barca game as getting past them will give us a great shot overall, but the main focus has to be kept on the league where we've got a run of nice games before Pool and Spurs. Not that they should be a problem, either. :ninja:

    We win the game in hand and we're a point behind Utd, with them still to play at home, the big names who have just picked up injuries should all be back before the harder games in the league, as should Vermaelen. Imo, we're getting very close to a position where the league is ours to lose.

    Utd's remaining fixtures:
    A - Liverpool
    H - Bolton
    A - WHU
    H - Fulham
    A - Newcastle
    H - Everton
    A - Arsenal
    H - Chelsea
    A - Blackburn
    H - Blackpool


    and ours...
    H - Sunderland
    A - WBA
    H - Blackburn
    A - Blackpool
    H - Liverpool
    A - Spurs
    A - Bolton
    H - Utd
    A - Stoke
    H - Villa
    A - Fulham


    Wrt Ramsey - I'm fairly certain his loan has ended and he's available for us again. :yy:
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    I'm sure I read somewhere that Vermaelen has suffered (another) setback?
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    Despite United losing tonight it is a false alarm for Arsenal as you still will manage to drop points after all it is Arsenal every season around March your team disintegrates like a cheap Primark jumper.
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    Hmm, don't think your fixtures are that much easier than ours looking at JK's post.

    3 games each we'd each be very confident going into; we have Bolton, Fulham and Blackpool at home, your next three games are Sunderland at home, Albion away and Blackburn at home.

    Then games where we're still favourites but there are a few doubts. We have 4, West Ham, Newcastle and Blackburn away, as well as Everton at home. You have 5, away games at Blackpool, Bolton, Stoke and Fulham, as well as Villa at home.

    Finally the games against the other top teams. We have Chelsea at home and trips to Liverpool and Arsenal. You have a game away at Spurs and home games at Liverpool and Man Utd.


    Really not a lot in that imo. Yours are slightly easier mainly because 2 of the top 6 games are at home, whereas 2 are away for us. Also helps you that our game is at your place. However, although you could look at your next 3 games as a chance for 9 points which would probably take you top, it does mean you have a hard run, 5 in a row in particular. Pool at home, Spurs away, Bolton away, the fixture with us and then Stoke away. Can't see anything as potentially damaging as that in our list, suppose the back to back games with you and Chelsea is the closest. Of course you could always see it as an opportunity...
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    It's a pleasing result but it's hard to get excited, no Cesc this weekend, no RVP or Walcott for 2-3 weeks, that's a huge set back for us. I can easily see us not winning at the weekend, just hope we grind out a win and then that gives us 2 weeks till WBA followed by the international break. Barca/Utd (assuming we can beat Orient tomorrow which isnt certain) will be huge asks, desperate for Nasri to step up and find his early season form to take up the slack
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    If we dont beat Orient tomorrow(/later today) I will never hear the end of it from my own Grandad!
    If there is a God, please dont let us make the same mistakes as Sunday...
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    (Original post by Economist)
    It's a pleasing result but it's hard to get excited, no Cesc this weekend, no RVP or Walcott for 2-3 weeks, that's a huge set back for us. I can easily see us not winning at the weekend, just hope we grind out a win and then that gives us 2 weeks till WBA followed by the international break. Barca/Utd (assuming we can beat Orient tomorrow which isnt certain) will be huge asks, desperate for Nasri to step up and find his early season form to take up the slack
    My thoughts exactly. You can't expect to have a fighting chance when you go into the big games missing your best players.
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    It's a shame that coming into the major cup games, our best two players are out. That said, I take solace in the fact that at least they're not out long-term. I really do hope Ramsey is given a chance though, if he is anything like he was last season (and the response from Cardiff seems to suggest he is) he should start ahead of Denilson.

    We should take a lot of positives from this game, however, like I said before, there's a lot of football to be played so we should be focussing on winning our games rather than hoping for Manc to slip up.
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    The next two games are crucial. We shouldn't underestimate Orient or our 2nd string's capability to self-destruct to be more precise with all due respect. I assume the same team or thereabouts will play again on the 5th and Sunderland is a must-win game.

    The injuries are worrying but I'm sure Cesc will be available along with Song and Koscielny which means on RVP and Theo out for the Barca game. Having said that, Wenger is known for his psychological mind-games. I hope at least one of them will be back by then.

    Best case scenario: Wins at home against Leyton and Sunderland. Everyone fit for Barca and a win at Old Trafford. Liverpool manage to get points off ManUtd and we get a chance to go top of the EPL at WBA in 17 days.

    Worst case scenario: Horrible results in the FA cup against Leyton/ManUtd. Barca humiliate us and we manage to hand the title over to ManUtd with a loss against Sunderland at home while Liverpool do us no favours. We then sulk and lose to WBA


    Big few days, no doubt.
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    We're in this two horse race... the way things should be. United and Arsenal fighting for the top spot.
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    Our focus should be the league, it's what we have the best chance of winning. As for the cup games, if we get past Orient, we can draw both and still progress so now really is the time for us to sort ourselves out defensively. We'll be underdogs in both the Barca and United (if we progress) games which I think will actually help. Hopefully Chamakh or Bendtner can get a few goals tonight and get some confidence because we've become so reliant on Van Persie recently, Chamakh looks lost when he comes on and Bendtner keeps being played from the wing where he isn't really effective.
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    (Original post by MoMatrix)
    Despite United losing tonight it is a false alarm for Arsenal as you still will manage to drop points after all it is Arsenal every season around March your team disintegrates like a cheap Primark jumper.
    :blah:

    I was posed an interesting question today - would you rather we lost the CC final and Chelsea beat Utd or the exact opposite?
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    (Original post by marcusmerehay)
    :blah:

    I was posed an interesting question today - would you rather we lost the CC final and Chelsea beat Utd or the exact opposite?
    I would rather win than lose but the league is more important than the CC. If utd losing leads to us winning the league then that result is infinitely better than winning the CC. If however we lose the league, then that result is irrelevant. Like I said before there's a lot of football to be played so we won't know the significance till the end of the season.
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    Not confident for Sunderland. We are so sh*t without Cesc it's disgusting.

    Arsene must play Wilshere in the advanced role and partner Song with Diaby if we're to get anything from the game.

    Rosicky shouldn't even make the bench, Ramsey should take his place.
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    For the next few weeks -- Wenger won't do it but I'd go Arshavin upfront, Ramsey left wing, Nasri right. Usual Song, Cesc, Wilshere mid.

    It would be genius. Arshavin is the closest player in the squad to Van Persie. His lack of tracking back would be less of an issue as the striker. He'd easily hold defenders off and he'd bring other players into play similar to RVP. Ramsey on left to cut inside and thread balls through to Arshavin/Nasri. It seriously would work.
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      (Original post by jit987)
      1st = Man United. Played 28 - Points 60

      2nd = Arsenal. Played 27 - Points 56

      So if we win the game in hand and win against Man United at home, we are top!. Tough games left are:
      Liverpool (H)
      Tottenham (A)
      Stock (A)




      Wenger - "Almunia needs games so he will play but Wojciech is alright and will be on the bench."
      http://www.guardian.co.uk/football/b...ingham-wembley

      It felt significant that Arsène Wenger announced immediately after the defeat that the Pole, his No1, would start in the FA Cup replay at home to Leyton Orient on Wednesday. Manuel Almunia started the first match.
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      It was from Arsenal.com just yesterday so is more likely to happen than the comment from sunday.
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      If we could win one trophy this season, would people prefer the premiership or champs league?

      For me it would be the prem.
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      (Original post by Overmars)
      For the next few weeks -- Wenger won't do it but I'd go Arshavin upfront, Ramsey left wing, Nasri right. Usual Song, Cesc, Wilshere mid.

      It would be genius. Arshavin is the closest player in the squad to Van Persie. His lack of tracking back would be less of an issue as the striker. He'd easily hold defenders off and he'd bring other players into play similar to RVP. Ramsey on left to cut inside and thread balls through to Arshavin/Nasri. It seriously would work.
      very interesting tbh.
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      (Original post by vn2009)
      If we could win one trophy this season, would people prefer the premiership or champs league?

      For me it would be the prem.
      Premiershp.

      If we won the CL, people will say we fluked it like Porto/Liverpool/etc.
     
     
     
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