Is it time for Arsenal Women to use Fran Stenson?

Was our goalie at fault for Arsenal Womens loss on Thursday?

Manuela Zinsberger hadn’t conceded a goal as yet in the FA Cup this season, that was until we came up against Manchester City, where she conceded two goals, adding to the two she has already conceded in the WSL so far.

Now it makes it one against Reading and one against West Ham in the WSL and two against City in the FA Cup!

Despite her conceding in the WSL Joe Montemurro still picked her to go in between the sticks against a City side that looked like they could score each time they went forward.

Is she to blame for our loss? Was she at fault for the goals? Could she have stopped either of the two goals that went in! The answers are all yes and no. Sloppy defending should never have been apparent, and she should have been able to keep the goals out. But quality over shone on the night and really, we lost as a team. This shouldn’t be a real shock, as from the off it was clear to see that she was going to be the busiest of keepers.

I have never really been too confident with Zinsberger in goal from what I have seen of her so far. Although she rarely got tested in previous games up until Thursday night, it could be said the City game was the biggest test she faced so far, and she failed along with her teammates.

As injuries seemed to be hitting us on Thursday, something else was clearly lacking in the team midweek. I think it would be a good time to give Fran Stenson a run around in the side to see if she could give Zinsberger some healthy competition and maybe it would be time for Fran to take her chance in the team and even overtake Zinsberger because it will only be a matter of time before Montemurro also decides a change needs to be made in between the sticks if his team is to compete and do better against top opposition.

A mixed midweek for the Arsenal Womens and Mens teams

As the Arsenal Women failed to beat Manchester City, losing 2-1 in the semi-finals of the FA Cup, in contrast to them, our men’s team pulled out a satisfying penalty shootout after finishing the game 0-0 after 90 minutes, beating Liverpool on penalties 5-4 helped them to advance to the next round of the Carabao Cup.


Of course, it would have been nice for both of our teams to progress and get positive results on the same day. But as that was not to be, at least one of our teams had done well, rather than both doing poorly!


The two games couldn’t be any different really. The Arsenal women hardly got out of the blocks and despite a wondergoal equaliser by Jordan Nobbs, they quickly fell back behind and lost 2-1 to a dominant Manchester City side, who seemed to work for it and want it more on the night. They got their reward and now they move on to the final of the FA Cup that will take place at Wembley.


Whereas on the other hand, the men came out with a determined performance against a strong Liverpool side and with some key saves at 0-0 in the game by Leno, the game was forced into penalties where he then saved two penalties and helped our men to a 5-4 win.

For the Arsenal women, they will now dust themselves off and move on and look to pick themselves up for their next round of games and for the men, they will now carry this positivity and add it to their already great mentality and try to achieve even more greatness under a manager that will accept nothing less. Here’s hoping hey Gooners?

Bernd Leno on his way to being Arsenal’s Number One?

Leno redeems himself in penalty shootout but there’s still a long way to go!

Bernd Leno shows that he is on the right track to becoming Arsenal’s number one.

He produced some key saves to keep us in the game throughout the 90 minutes on Thursday night against a strong Liverpool side, and it was clear to see as he won the man of the match performance that he is serious abiout becoming that number one.

Coming under fire by myself for previous games so far this season, I have to say I was impressed with the way he came out to try and prove people like me wrong but there is a long way to go and even Leno will know that!

Although the teams were slightly different to the one that was sent out on Monday, both teams still had a strong line-up. We could see as much, as Arteta decided to pick Leno rather than give new signing Runarsson a run out.

And Leno did not disappoint, making some key saves to keep out a number of Liverpool shots during the game, he was again in the spot light, in a penalty shootout where he would be called upon to try and save at least one, and that he did, saving twice in another shootout v Liverpool, making the saves from Divock Origi and Harry Wilson helping to put us through to the next round of the Carabao Cup!

The penalty results were as below:

Arsenal Scorers

Arsenal Misses

Liverpool Scorers

Liverpool Misses / Leno Saves ?

Leno was impressive throughout the game pulling off saves to keep us at 0-0. He then pulled off two saves in the shootout to help us win 5-4 and match the result that we had against the same opponents in the Community Shield final. Now all Leno needs to do is to keep that form up and keep it consistent and he will soon become a number one in my eyes.

How far the Mighty Arsenal have fallen this season…

And there goes the dream fading away by Lagos Gooner

Hello Gooners all over! I am still in a great shock: I can’t possibly think of any reason why we lost to a spirited Olympiacos team. A match I felt we were going to win effortlessly became the match that broke my heart, once again! Who is going to console me right now? Who is going to console the billions of Arsenal fans all over the world, who felt winning the Europa would catapult them into the UEFA Champions league? What is going to happen next to my darling Arsenal? Wow! How are the mighty fallen! The great Arsenal is finding it difficult winning the 2nd tier UEFA competition.

Earlier this month, I did a piece on two things I want from Arsenal this season. I said I wanted us to qualify for the Champions league and I wanted my uncle to fulfill his promise of sponsoring me on a trip to see the Emirates stadium live! Arsenal by failing to qualify for the round of 16 games in the Europa, have limited their chances of qualifying for the UEFA Champions league, next season. Let me say this here; in as much as I believe in miracles, I don’t believe Arsenal will end the season in the top four. To be honest with us all, Chelsea and Manchester United are doing better than us in the Premier league and I don’t see them not finishing higher than us in the league. Even if Manchester City is to miss the champions league next season, we still have teams who will finish above us, at the end of this current Premiership campaign. We have Leicester city, we have Chelsea, we have Man United and of course, we have Wolves! All these teams will surely finish higher than us unless a miracle happens. Arsenal sadly, just threw away the only real chance they had of qualifying for the UEFA Champions league. It can’t get worse, can it?

However, I still believe Arteta is doing a good job, despite his obvious lack of experience at the highest level. A coach like Mikel Arteta should not been thrown straight into the hot zone! He is not experienced enough to steer a big club like Arsenal with high expectations, out of trouble. Rather, he should have been hired at the start of a new season, where he can start a campaign and plan it his own way. What I am trying to say here is that, with Arteta, we won’t qualify for the champions league this season, but next season will be better. I still feel bad about the loss but I will be fine. We are Arsenal and we are proud.

Sylvester Kwentua

Arsenal player ratings v Watford – Leno saves us from another awayday embarrassment

A win is a win and so that is good, right? Well, yes, but also a resounding no, why? because we were rank poor again and my player ratings will reflect that, I will not gloss over the failings just because we won, a win that came about because of a goalkeeping howler and because our opponents went down to ten men, not that we took full advantage.

As the game went on, I honestly thought we would concede, the Hornets looked far more likely to find the back of the net than what we did and I tell you now, we play like that against Napoli and a two-goal lead will not be enough.

Anyway, here are my ratings

Leno – 8

He made some crucial saves, without him we may well have conceded and to a large extent, he saved us from embarrassing ourselves.

Mustafi – 7

Actually thought he had a good game, he stood strong under pressure and thankfully made no gross errors.

Mavropanos – 5

Bloody useless, he made me nervous and if Andre Gray was a better play we would have been in trouble.

Koscielny – 7

Solid performance when you consider how much defending he had to do, showed toughness against a very physical team.

Monreal – 6

Was reliable, never made any big mistakes but was not inspiring with his passes either, an average performance really.

Torreira – 5

I expected more and the truth is he never delivered in midfield, we should have completely controlled the game when Deeney got sent off but we did not and for large parts of the game got overrun in the centre and a part of that was down to a poor game from Torreira.

Xhaka – 5

A poor game and just like Torreira I expected more, with his talent and vision he should have taken the midfield by the scruff of its neck, he never did.

Mkhitaryan – 4

Woeful, his finishing and passing were terrible, he never looked like he wanted to tackle and just looked damn lazy throughout.

Ramsey – 5

Not a vintage performance, in fact, he was poor, he had a great chance in this game to tear into Watford and he just went missing.

Iwobi – 6

At least he tried but what did he actually do with the ball, nothing, he looked like a busy bee with no end product.

Aubameyang – 7

He made the goal with his persistence, he did his job and for large parts of the game was provided with appalling service, cannot criticise him too much.

Ozil – 6

Became anonymous when he was brought on, he did show some of his usual sublime touches and on a couple of times released the pressure on us but other than that did nothing outstanding in a game perfectly set up for him.

Guendouzi – 6

Was busy and involved when he came on, did nothing wrong really, no mad tackles, no real bad passes and fought for the ball, his usual average game.

Maitland-Niles – 7

Made a very crucial tackle and when he came on he did make a difference, he brought a far better shape to the team and it is a shame he was not on from the start.

So, as you can see, the ratings are not great and I am critical and I will not apologise for that, not when you are playing a team down to ten men for almost 80 minutes and their most influential player at that was the one red carded, we should have done far better than scrape through and goal difference could be a factor come to the end of the season, we had a chance here to really lay down a marker and we failed.

Yes, we won, I am happy about that, but I saw nothing last night to alleviate my worries about our away form, absolutely nothing.

Arsenal player ratings against Napoli with two players 9/10

The boys did excellent against one of the best teams in Italian football and fully deserved the win over Napoli, in fact, the only real disappointment is that we never won by more.

The change in performance from the Everton game was huge, this was an Arsenal display that was a pleasure to experience, they played great as a team unit with some great individual performances.

Arsenal Ratings.

Petr Cech – 6

Cech only gets a six simply because he was never really called on to make any significant saves or for that matter, make any howlers.

Sokratis – 7

Very assured performance and when you consider the potent attack that Napoli have then it makes his performance all the more satisfying.

Koscielny – 8

Put in a captains performance and played as if he was as fit as a fiddle, you would never have thought he was one of the players we were concerned about before the game even started.

Monreal – 7

Of all the defenders Monreal looked the weakest link but he deserves a 7 for being part of a unit that kept a clean sheet and nullifying the Napoli offence.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles – 8

What a change around in performance from the woeful display against Everton to this fine display against Napoli, he impressed all night long and I was so close to giving him a 9

Lucas Torreira – 9

Now, Torreira does deserve a 9, he bossed the midfield, he was relentless all night and it is a shame that he has not been credited with a goal, simply put, he makes a huge difference.

Aaron Ramsey – 9

So close to a 10, he was brilliant all night, Napoli had no answer to him, his goal was clinical and we are really going to miss him, certainly a man for the big occasion.

Sead Kolasinac – 6

Probably our weakest player on the evening, he did well don’t get me wrong but his touch let him down a few times and he was not the best crosser of the ball, but overall he did ok.

Mesut Ozil – 8

Far better from the German and he showed why we all get so frustrated with him, he was at his sublime best, just a shame he cannot be more consistent but he deserves credit for putting in a fine display.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – 7

Clearly not at his sharpest but he was busy and kept the Napoli defence on their toes, did an efficient job all things considered.

Alexandre Lacazette – 6

Not his finest game and I have him with Kolasinac as our weakest player on the night but he tried and he made room for others to shine.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 7

By definition, he gets a slightly higher ranking than Lacazette whom he replaced, simply because he did better in the 20 odd minutes he had than what Lacazette had in his 67 minutes.

Alex Iwobi – 6

Never really did anything in the time he was on the pitch but he was all over the place hunting for the ball and did his defensive duties when not going forward.

Crystal Palace leave Arsenal three-falling out of CL spots

Crystal Palace beat Arsenal at Selhurst Park, leaving the visitors hopes of finishing inside the top four very slim.

The Eagles earned a well-deserved 3-0 win over a lacklustre Gunners side, thanks to goals from Andros Townsend, Yohan Cabaye and Luka Milivojevic.

Crystal Palace, who are officially sponsored by the Mansion Group; owner of successful casino brands like, were picking up their fifth win in six Premier League outings, but still came into the match as underdogs.

Arsenal have been out of sorts in recent months, but have such quality in the side that you know they will bounce back to form, it just didn’t happen for us against our London rivals.

Palace went a goal ahead inside 20 minutes when Andros Townsend put away Wilfried Zaha’s lucky through ball, to leave us trailing, and unfortunately our team didn’t react to that.

Our best chance of the first-half fell to Mohamed Elneny, who forced a save from the in-form Wayne Hennessey with a nicely placed shot from outside the box. Unfortunately that was one of very few chances created before the interval.

The second-half wasn’t much better for us either, and shortly after Arsene Wenger tried to make some changes to give us a chance, we conceded a second. Yohan Cabaye scored with a sweet curled shot over the defender and keeper from just inside the area, leaving Emiliano Martinez no chance of saving.

Nothing went our way in the match, not that we appeared to deserve anything, and Milivojevic put the game away with Palace’s third goal of the game from the penalty spot.

The home team can now be ever-confident of securing their Premier League status beyond the summer, but will still be keen on keeping their run of results going in order to cement their place, as well as build up form before the new campaign.

Arsenal still have much to do, with the FA Cup still to play for, as well as the crucial race for the top four, which they must now rely on rivals Manchester United, Liverpool and Manchester City to drop points.

Can Arsenal still claw their way back into the top four? Am I being too harsh on Arsenal’s performance?

West Brom v Arsenal – What the stats said….


The Gunners were hammered a big blow at the Hawthorns as Arsenal were beaten 3-1 under the view of 24065 spectators. The host started brightly as they took the lead through Craig Dawson who found some room in Arsenal’s defence to head home from a resultant corner-kick in the 12th minutes of the game.

The Gunners came back into the game through who else but Alexis Sanchez as Arsenal eventually lost 3-1 to the host.
This result makes it 4 loss out of the last five games for Arsenal s questions continues to get towards the Arsenal side and Arsene Wenger in particular for what a torrid season it is turning to be for the London side.
With the 3-1 loss we take a look at some match statistics as it happened at the Hawthorns.

The Gunners were beaten on numbers of shots on target by the home side. West Brom had six strikes on goal which resulted in the corner-kick that produced both goals for the home side as they downed Arsenal 3-1 in the game.
Arsenal’s 3 shots on goal produced their equalizer as Alexis Sanchez showed composure and confidence to finish past the goalkeeper following a brilliant ball from his teammate Granit Xhaka who looped a decent ball over the West Brom defence to find Alexis Sanchez in the box.

Both sides produced a total of six shots off target in the game as both sides shared the spoils here on 3 shots apiece away from goal.
In the end it was Arsenal who paid the price in the match as they were dealt a huge blow with the 3-1 win in the game.

It was no surprise as the Gunners produced quality and flair in transition. The likes of Aaron Ramsey and Granit Xhaka sat deep in midfield as the duo produced some good moment to dominate the host in the middle of the park.
The Gunners though were unlucky as they could not convert their dominance into the much needed three points as Craig Dawson got the job done for West Brom with 2 headed goals.

The Gunners had 5 corner-kicks in the game as regards to West Brom’s 4 corner-kick in total.
The host made use of their corner-kick to effectiveness as two of their goals came from corner-kick set play from one player Craig Dawson who scored in each half to open and end the scoring in the match as Arsenal were given a soccer punch in the wake of what is turning out to be a bad and unfruitful season and a one to forget.

The home side had 2 offside calls in the game while the visiting side Arsenal were caught offside on one occasion as the host threw every ball at the Gunners in the wake of a 3-1 win despite Alexis Sanchez equalizer in the game.

The host committed about 5 fouls in the entire game while the visitors were forced into 5 fouls themselves in the match. This is as a result of the flair exhibited by both side in midfield particularly from Granit Xhaka and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain as both sides attempted to get the ball off each other in the wake of the contested duel at the Hawthorns.

The game produced only one yellow card in the entire 90minutes encounter. It was no surprise as the team with the less possession of the ball tends to hit the dominant side in the course of the game.
West Brom’s James McClean was booked in the 42nd minute as the only booking of the entire match.

The game produced a total of 12 goal-kicks in the game. Players like Sanchez and Salomon Rondon spearheaded their team’s attack (forward play) as this resulted in a stern attacking match for the opposing defence as Arsenal conceded 7 goal-kick behind their goal as compared to the 5 goal-kick at the end of West Brom goal area.

The Gunners had 2 treatments in the game as compared to the host none in the game. It was no surprise as Arsenal players are prone to injury and might have fallen prey to any sort of knocks or some physical constraint during the game in line with Alexis Sanchez injury before the Chilean Superstar was replaced by Nigerian attacking talent Alex Iwobi later on in the game.

Arsenal 5-0 Lincoln City – What the stats revealed about the game…

The Gunners were 5-0 winners over Lincoln FC in the FA Cup clash on Saturday to prove that their season is not all dead and gone, as it seems following back to back defeat against Liverpool (3-1) and (Bayern Munich 5-1 home and away) in the UEFA Champions League.

Be that as it may b, Theo Walcott got the breakthrough goal for Arsenal to open the scoring as goals kept coming in the second half.

The game was a true reflection of the score line as Arsenal dominated the game thus making Lincoln to be second best in the entire contest.

With the win some level of pressure has been lifted from Arsenal Manager Arsene Wenger as we take some match statistics into consideration.

Here are what the stats says as regards to the Gunners thumping 5-0 victory over Lincoln FC.

The Gunners were superior in the attacking units as regards to attempts on goal as the host cut through the Lincoln’s defence to find the breakthrough which they truly deserve.
Players like Theo Walcott and Alexis Sanchez made sure that Arsenal’s 7 shots on goal did not count for nothing as it was crucial in nailing the visitors on the night as Nathan Arnold tested Petr Cech in goal with a decent strike which the Veteran was up to with a good save.

The shots off target shows the level of attacking quality both sides have in their kitty as regards to the 5-0 win for Arsenal at the Emirates. The visitors were content in defending whereas Arsenal have a different plan of their own which is to find the elusive goal as they sought to make amends for a woeful run of matches in recent games.
Arsenal’s attacking efforts off target was 16 in total compared to Lincoln FC’s 2 in the entire game. This shows the disparity between the two sides in quality from an attacking point of view.

The possession score board serves it right for Arsenal as they deservedly won 5-0 to salvage some respect in front of their home fans who needed victory by all means against the Lower League side.
The likes of Granit Xhaka, Aaron Ramsey and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (who was replaced by Mesut Ozil) ensured that Arsenal bossed the midfield with a level of superiority to win the game for Arsenal in a brilliant fashion.

It was no surprise as the Gunners amassed 10 corners in the game, 5 times (5x) more than the underdogs(with due respect)Lincoln who had just 2 in the entire 90 minutes of the game.
The likes of Alexis Sanchez and Theo Walcott in particular forced corner-kick in behind the Lincoln defence as the visitors were finding it tough to cope with the pace of Bellerin and Walcott on the right and Alexis Sanchez (flair) on the left as corner-kick looked inevitable for the Lincoln side who concede 10 of them in the game.

The Gunners were caught offside on one occasion as compared to Lincoln 3 offside calls in the entire game. This was as a result of their bid to catch Arsenal on the break (counter) as they (Lincoln) defended stoutly especially in the first period of the match.
Arsenal were dominant in the game and so there were no need to get behind the defence and into the linesman offside trap as they worked their way to victory just like (Aaron) Ramsey did in the 75th minutes of the game to add gloss to the score line.

The Gunners gave away 9 fouls in the game To Whom It May Concern as the visitor’s committed 8 fouls in the game. Players like Xhaka and Coquelin were guilty of this foul on occasion along with Koscielny even when they dominated the game with all evidence.

Though Arsenal committed 9 fouls in the game, 1 (one) more than Lincoln who had 8 in the game. The visitors received 3 yellow cards in the game as compared to Arsenal 2 bookings in the match.
This is likely as a result of more/poor challenges by the visiting side as Arsenal were in firm control of the tie which ended 5-0 in the favour of the host.


@ Olisaegboogu (add me on Twitter).

What the stats say about Arsenal v Bayern Munich


The Gunners were beaten hands down as the Bavarian giants cruised past the hosts at the Emirates Stadium 5-1 in the match and 10-2 on aggregate. It was a dismal night of football for Arsenal as they suffered one of their heaviest defeats at the Champions league stage. The likes of Arjen Robben and Douglas Costa personally tore Arsenal’s defence apart as goals from Arturo Vidal completed the routing to make it 5-1 at the Emirates.

As it stands now the Gunners are out and pondering what might have been for yet another possibly trophy-less season as the hope of the Arsenal faithful have been dashed in the course of the 90 minutes against the visiting Bayern side. Following the huge defeat we evaluate some match features by taking the statistics into considerations.
Here are what the statistics says for the Arsenal 1-5 loss to Bayern Munich at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners had limited shots on target here as the Bavarians held firm defensively to prevent a clear sight of goal from Arsenal.
The visiting side have 7 shots on target, the one which produced their 5 goals in the match to nail the Gunners as Theo Walcott tried to improvise for his team with the early breakthrough in the 20th minutes of the game.

It was a game where 13 shots were produced as regards to the entire attempts in the game. Arsenal still had 6 shots off target as a product of their increased attacking play in a bid to find the breakthrough in the game which helped Arsenal get off the mark.
Also the opposing team Bayern Munich had 7 shots off target as a result of their increased intensity during the game as compared to Arsenal 6 shots due to the fact that Bayern were the superior side in the game.


The Gunners were not in any way the better side in terms of ball possession as the opposing sides have a plan of their own with the visiting midfielders dominating the Arsenal side in transition.
Though the likes of Sanchez tried to influence the game along with Aaron Ramsey and Granit Xhaka, the Bavarian side did well to accommodate the host to nail them as the visitors (Robben) passed the ball around with incision during the game.

The Gunners had 5 corner-kicks in the game as compared to 8 recorded by the Bayern Munich side.
The talent and the attacking guile of the Bavarians side ensured that they threatened the opposing side with the chance to score at every given time with Arjen Robben leading the charge as they drew saves from the keeper which produced more (8) corner-kicks to indicate were the pressure was higher during the game as Arsenal had 5 corner-kicks in the game.

The host side had 3 offside calls in the game as opposed to Bayern Munich who had 4 offside calls in the game. This was as a result of Bayern’s genuine interest in getting ahead of the opposition in the attacking third as (they) Bayern showed more intent and team play in the second half to leapfrog the Gunners who had 3 offside calls themselves during the game at the Emirates Stadium.

It was an intense game as it produced a total of 23fouls in the game. Arsenal committed 13 fouls in the game 3 more than the visitors who had 10 fouls committed in the game.
It was no fluke as the Bayern Munich side who had more possession of the ball were fouled more in possession as Arsenal attempted to get the ball back by all means to build an attack of their own in the game thus committing 3 more fouls against the visitors who won the game 5-1.

The game produced 5 yellow cards in the game with Arsenal having a higher share with 3 bookings to their name as compared to Bayern Munich’s 2 bookings in the game. It was no fluke as the host Arsenal who made more fouls had more booking than Bayern in the game. The Arsenal trio of Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Granit Xhaka were booked in the 39th, 61st and 78th minute of the game respectively. Bayern’s duo of David Alaba and Javier Martinez were booked in the 39th and 44th minutes of the game respectively.

It was a bizarre game for Arsenal as they were dealt a huge blow in the second half when the lines man told the referee to issue a red card to Laurent Koscielny after the central referee had already given a yellow card initially.
Arsenal’s skipper Laurent Koscielny was dismissed in the game to the dismay of the viewers worldwide as we wondered what impact the decision would have to the game.
This was due to a foul on Robert Lewandoski in the Penalty box by the Arsenal skipper as Arsenal ended the game with 10 men to the advantage of the Bavarians side who exploited some holes in the Gunners defence.

The Arsenal side had about 6 Goal-kick as compared to Bayern Munich 7 goal-kicks in the game.
This was a result of increased loose ball behind the Bayern Munich goal in the game as they held firm to beat Arsenal 5-1 and 10-2 on aggregate at home with Manuel Neuer in top form between the sticks.