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Possible leaked 125th anniversary home kit pictures – 2011/12 20 March, 2011

Posted by lasagnechef in Arsenal News.

I did previously link to another leaked photo but it now looks like our new  home kit could be this. Emphasis on the word ‘could’, I have no idea how genuine these are but they look pretty real to me.

If this is the real deal, I guess i like it but I doubt I’ll be buying it. It’s too similar to our current shirt (which I love) and I don’t really see the need to spend £50 just to get a shirt that has got some leaves round the badge. It’s nice, don’t get me wrong but I dunno I kind of expected something a bit more special. It says ‘Arsenal’ though so I guess that’s all you can ask for with an anniversary kit.

I guess we’ll get confirmation on the new kits in the summer but until then this might be what we’re wearing next season. It would look good with some red and white stripy socks and matching gold Premier League patches on the sleeves…

As for the away, well Arseblogger said on his twitter that the new away could be based on this blue lightning kit from 1995:

That could be interesting! I had that kit when I was a boy with Wright 8 on the back so I’d be tempted to get that again over the home. We’ll see ay.

Tomorrow is the first day of the international break, our players will be jetting home to reunite with their national teams. It might be awkward but remember to keep those fingers crossed for two solid weeks in the hope that we get no more injuries. News is going to be pretty slow Arsenal-wise so I’ll try my best to keep the site updated in the meantime, but I guess no news is good news.

Feel free to spread these photos to your friends using the Facebook and Twitter buttons below. Also if you missed it my write up from my trip to West Brom yesterday is here. Thanks for reading.

West Brom 2-2 Arsenal – 19/03/11 – (Premier League) 20 March, 2011

Posted by lasagnechef in Arsenal News.

Another match, another disappointment, another drama. Well it would just be boring if we strolled to a win every week wouldn’t it?

We could’ve really done with a win yesterday to end the bad spell we’ve been on and go into the International break with our confidence back but in the end we were lucky not to lose. A draw is a bad result but with the circumstances yesterday I suppose it’s not the end of the world; it could’ve been much better but it could’ve been a lot, lot worse. At 2-0 down I didn’t think we were coming back and I said to myself I’d be happy with a draw so I guess I can’t complain too much. We had chances to win it at the end and a goal then would’ve been absolutely massive but it didn’t come so I guess we just need to be glad we didn’t drop all three points. We’re still in the race for the moment.

My day started at half 11, getting the train up to Birmingham. The city centre was a loony bin; I saw all kinds of lunatics in my 10 minute walk from Birmingham New Street station to Birmingham Moor Street station than you’d see in a week in London. Well I guess that depends where you go! But little did I know the craziest motherfucker was to come, a crazy Spaniard about an hour into the match itself…

I got to The Hawthorns pretty early, I was there just after 1 o’clock and I was surprised to see the West Brom players walking to the stadium from the facility over the road. Good for the home fans getting a few autographs and that, bad for me as I had to endure the deformed face of Scott Carson up close. I stayed though to see if Carlos Vela was about and then hung around to see the Arsenal coach arrive and watch the players get off the bus. It’s not a sight I get to see much anymore, I used to watch the players get off the coach at Highbury, quite liked cheering the players in. Anyway if you’re interested you can watch a video of them arriving here. It was my first glimpse of the man, the legend – Jens Lehmann.

Inside the ground they were showing Tottenham vs. West Ham which was quite inspiring for a few lots of anti-Spurs chanting. A West Ham goal would’ve gone down a treat, and despite at half time the West Brom big screen saying The Hammers won 1-0, it was not the case and it finished 0-0. Nice to see them dropping points as always and we made our way to our seats in high spirits.

Whilst watching the scum I received the team news that Ramsey was starting via some kid in front of me jumping up screaming as if we’d just scored a cup final winning goal. I mean I understand he is liked amongst fans but fuck me that was an over reaction to 21-year-old who hasn’t started a Premier League game in over a year. I don’t know, maybe he had twenty quid on Aaron starting, then the reaction might’ve made sense. I was there at Stoke when he was Shawcrossed so I feel a sense of attachment to him too but I don’t exactly think he’s going to be our saviour right now. Aaron was joined in midfield by the defensive (and I use that term very loosely) partnership of Denilson and Wilshere.

Denilson has been bad recently but fuck me he was awful yesterday. He couldn’t hit a pass with any accuracy, conviction or creation. He looks like he’s completely lost any confidence and his defending was even worse. His idea of defence is loose your man, chase back and him then foul him. Surely he can’t play again this season and I’m glad Wenger shared my view as he was brought off at half time.

Any good feelings about the game or hysteria about Aaron Ramsey’s start were quickly diminished. West Brom won an early corner and Reid beat none other than Ramsey to the header and they were 1-0 up after two minutes. I wonder how that kid felt about his favourite Welshman now. Not a lot you can say about the goal, it was a good corner and a good header, I thought we could’ve done better to not concede the set piece in the first place, Sagna missed the clearance completely giving Koscielny no choice but to nod it out.

We only really had one chance to reply in the first half. Clichy put in a good cross to van Persie who’s looping header hit the bar and fell to Ramsey who couldn’t put it in from 3 yards out. Carson did well to get a block in but I hoped Aaron might’ve placed it in the corner rather than hitting it straight at the ‘keeper.

At half time we found ourselves in a very similar situation to 2004. Having just been knocked out of the FA Cup and Champions League we were trailing to Liverpool in the league and needed a big second half performance. Apparently that day Thierry Henry had some inspirational words to say in the Highbury dressing room but yesterday I couldn’t imagine any one of that squad grabbing the team by the scruff of the neck at half time. Maybe Jens Lehmann but he’s hardly in a position to be bossing anyone around just yet being at the club about three days.

It told and we didn’t exactly come out in the second half raring to go. The only boost of confidence was Denilson’s departure for Chamakh, which meant Nasri dropped back into midfield. I thought Marouane had a good half actually; he’s been a bit disappointing since RVP returned and took his place in the side but he was one of my men of the match yesterday. He was getting involved, looking for the ball and making moves, which unfortunately cannot be said of a lot of players. I have no problem with a lack of quality or skill but I love a player that puts the effort in and that’s exactly what Chamakh did yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised. He could still do with a goal though, he got an assist for Arshavin’s goal but if he could rediscover that goal scoring form from early in the season it could be vital to our title hopes. I wasn’t so impressed with Andrey Arshavin yesterday, he is miles ahead in the vote for Arsenal.com’s man of the match but he was pissing me off yesterday. It was just the typical Arshavin performance – do nothing all game, amble around and then two bits of magic and he’s a hero. He never got going until we were 2-0 down and that was true of most of the side. Why the fuck do we have to wait until we’re losing by two goals to actually have a go? It’s like we had no motivation, is the Premier League title not motivating enough? For fucks sake…

Anyway, Ramsey was taken off for Bendtner in the 56th minute as Wenger tried to do something about our game. I thought Aaron had an alright hour, he needs games to get back to his best but he can’t do a lot when the players around him aren’t helping and I think that was his problem yesterday. We were 1-0 down but we weren’t creating or doing much, maybe having Bendnter, Chamakh, van Persie, Arshavin and Nasri on the pitch would force something out of them. However it wasn’t the substitution that inspired us, it was another West Brom goal.

They went 2-0 up two minutes after that change and what a ridiculous goal it was. The ball was hoofed up field more in hope than anything else, Odemwingie had just Squillaci to beat but Almunia made it a whole lot easier for him by charging out of his goal for no apparently reason, getting nowhere near the ball. The West Brom striker  just had to take a touch and score into the empty net. I’d almost forgotten about this side of Manuel’s game, he made some good saves at Old Trafford and the Nou Camp but for every four or five good stops there’s a moment of madness. I don’t know what the fuck he was thinking, we were in trouble but Squillaci was there and if he had stayed in goal then Odemwingie would’ve had some work to do to try and find some room for a shot and Almunia might’ve saved it then. Instead he ran out of goal with no real confidence and made it easy for him. If you’re going to come out, you have to 100% commit and sprint to the ball, not just jog out and hope for the best. There was some calling for Lehmann but I don’t think he is the answer. I mean Jens is a legend but he’s just as crazy as Almunia and I wouldn’t put it past him making the same mistake yesterday. Not just that but he’s been out of football for ages and there’s a reason for that – he’s here simply in case Almunia gets injured so I’m not saying drop Manuel. He’s all we have so we can’t moan too much about yesterday calamitous error, all we can do is just get behind him and hope Szczesny recovers soon.

At 2-0 down it looked pretty dire and to be honest I thought we were going to lose seeing the way we’d been playing. There were a few Gooners who had seen enough and were making their way out. There was still half an hour to go though so there was still time to turn it around if there was some miracle. I was saying in my head that I’d be happy with a draw now, at 1-0 down I still thought we might come back and win but at this point I would just be happy with a point. We only needed a goal to inspire us and that came with 20 minutes to go.

We started actually showing some urgency after going two down. I was frustrated it had taken this long but at least we were playing now. Arshavin suddenly decided that he wanted to play and he was instrumental in our fight back. In the 70th minute he played a one-two with Chamakh, took a touch inside the area and finished brilliantly in the far corner with his left foot. That’s the thing with Arshavin, he can have an awful game then out of nowhere score a brilliant goal! We put the foot on the pedal even more and just seven minutes later we squeezed in the second. Arshavin did well on the left wing getting past two defenders and managing to put in cross. It fell to the back post, Bendtner got a knee on it before it went out and it fell to van Persie who slid in and the ball trickled across the line. It was a scrappy, scrappy goal but one we worked hard for and we’d got it back to 2-2.

We spent the remainder of the game pushing and we could’ve got a third but it never came. To come from 2-0 down to win 3-2 would’ve been brilliant and incredibly motivating for the rest of the season but in the end it didn’t come and I guess we just have to be thankful we got those two goals. To lose yesterday, well it would’ve been fucking shit to say the least. The team’s attitude was not right and I hope that it gets sorted out in the two week break we’ve got now. We’re lacking leadership and fight but hopefully that will return when we get some players back after these internationals. Fabregas, Walcott and Song are all due back for our next game, which will be a massive boost; we really miss the different qualities of those three players – Creation, leadership, pace and the ability to defend. However we always go into international breaks in this sort of situation – just as it looks like we’re nearing some degree of a full squad another group of players go and get injured. My money is on van Persie to come back crocked but my fingers are heavily crossed he can escape injuries just this once; we could do with a bit of luck.

Man United have got injury problems of their own and I think this break comes at a good time for them too. The lucky bastards got a last minute gifted goal yesterday to win 1-0 so they’re five points ahead of us now having played a game more but that game in hand we have is away to Tottenham and that’s hardly a guaranteed three points.

As frustrating and heartbreaking these sort of times are, it sure is exciting and I’m glad we’re in the mix. Thanks for reading.


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