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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

"I was feeling as sick as the proverbial donkey."

The quote in the title comes from Mick the Mackem Muppet. More misery was heaped upon S********d by the Gunners in the Carling Cup, which was surely the Wearsiders' only slim chance at silverware. No doubt the derby at the weekend took all their strength, the poor dears.

Van Persie's high strike rate for Arsenal begs the question of whether he should play more often than Pires, who, let's face it, is losing a step or two. He also gives the Gunners more directness, much needed given that Henry usually scores from well outside the six-yard box. Of course, we should all have such problems.


Dyer's impending return creates a bit of a quandary for Souey (pronounced in the U.S. "Soooweee, PIG!"). Solano surely has to be on the right wing, the gaffer seems to be in love with N'Zogbia, and Dyer fancies himself a striker. Yet with Shola, Shearer and Owen in action, there's no room up front.

N'Zogbia on the left is the weak link, but Dyer is naturally right-footed and tends to stray inside when forced to play on the left. To smooth things over, one might consider - shudder - a diamond with Parker dropping behind, Emre on the left, Solano on the right and Dyer tucked behind the strikers. Sven would be in heaven.

Either way, it's unlikely to be an issue for long. As usual, Dyer will tear across the field one too many times for his leg muscles and, within a few weeks, injure himself again.


Blogger the Maradona of Malawi said...

hang on, hang on, hang on... now I'm no expert on the 'mighty' toon, but what happened to Amdy Faye? Surely he's a better player for the base of the midfield diamond than Scott Parker?

I'm actually quite amazed that Emre hasn't been savagely beaten up by his teammates. If I recall a couple of seasons ago there was a fairly rancorous match between Inter and Newc in which Gobby (Bellamy) and Emre featured quite heavily...

7:42 PM  
Blogger The American Geordie said...

Ah, but Craaaig "David" Bellamy is now persona non grata on Tyneside, hence "the enemy of my enemy is my new best friend, especially since he takes a wicked free kick."

I'm not so sure Faye is superior to Parker in the holding role, in an ideal setup. It's obviously not Parker's traditional position, but he did it pretty well at the weekend.

Things are far from ideal, though. Faye's defensive-mindedness could indeed help until our first-string defenders return. The commentators on Sunday kept saying, "The holding midfielder needs to protect the back four." Well, most good teams have a back four that doesn't need protecting.

8:21 PM  
Blogger the Maradona of Malawi said...

hmmm. I remain to be convinced. Especially after the young one leapt into Papa Souness' arms in celebration...

btw - is it just me or does Ken Bates look like Papa Smurf?

4:48 PM  
Blogger The American Geordie said...

I think there's no better evidence for the Papa Bates hypothesis than this.

1:15 AM  

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