Past Performances

Please find for posterity the Come on the Arsenal player ratings for the 2009-2010 season. For player ratings for more recent Arsenal matches head to our top level Arsenal player ratings page.

Arsenal Player Ratings 2009-10 Season

Sunday 18th April: Wigan 3 Arsenal 2

Posted by Sonuvagun

Quality Disclaimer: These match ratings have been compiled with a huge degree of can’t-be-Arsed-ness. In fact so soul-destroying was that eel-like display of spine-iture, that I’m going to settle with one overall team rating…

The Entire Arsenal Team

Verdict: Bent over and invited Wigan to take them up the Arse. After dominating the little bitches for so long, instead of taking a hot shower and leaving without so much as a goodbye, the entire Arsenal team decided to spend the last ten minutes of our visit inviting Wigan to probe, penetrate and eventually bitch slap our sorry Arses in what was surely one of the most humiliating defeats in Arsenal history. Thanks guys we really enjoyed that.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Dumb Arse. If the decision to play Fabianski was really due to a wrist sprain suffered by Almunia then fair enough… otherwise it was an inexplicable decision to play a guy who has consistently cost us games in virtually every appearance he’s made this season. His team selection may have represented his only options, but the subs were made either too late (my opinion) or were the wrong personnel (SmartArse)… at any rate they failed. His faith in current crop of players and the strength of his squad seems laughable on days like this, and fairly or not AW has to take responsibility for them letting him and the fans down.

Tuesday 6th April: Barcelona 4-1 Arsenal

Posted by SmartArse

Unsuprisingly, even the player ratings mention Messi more than anyone else. An odd tale of most people playing not that badly, but unfortunately few playing well. If these ratings came in numbers, we’d be seeing a lot of 5/6s

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Sparse, if only because of the quality of the finishing. Made one excellent save from Messi early on but was given no chance with goals. Even the fourth was stupendously placed. Really does need to stop distributing in such a hurry though. Repeatedly kicked the ball out of play and gave possession away. Deadly vs Barca.

Bacary Sagna

Verdict: Firm rump. Played pretty okay, but only because Keita offered no threat to him. Completely cut open by a through ball from you-know-who for the second, but generally solid if totally unspectacular.

Thomas Vermaelen

Verdict: Well spanked arse. Frankly like rest of back four, actually played okay, just beaten. Certainly culpable for third. His missed header on the half-way line gave Messi a free run at goal. Cruelly twisted inside out for the fourth. Beaten, by hardly blameworthy.

Mikael Silvestre

Verdict: An arse out of his depth. But like Vermaelen, hardly blameworthy. Looked worried every time someone dribbled at him, but none of the goals came from these moments. A deflection off Nasri took the ball out of his control for the first and he actually did well for the second. Perhaps out of position for the third but generally played rather better than expected, sweeping round well on occasion

Gael Clichy

Verdict: Magnif-arse-ent. The best player in an Arsenal shirt. Played the whole game at full throttle, charged around winning tackles and trying to force the issue going forward. So unlucky that Bendtner was marginally offside as he crashed Clichy’s superb cross onto the post. Only times Barca really threatened on his wing was when Rosicky in particular gave the ball away as he overlapped.

Denilson

Verdict: Work ho(a)rse. Probably the next best after Clichy, did well make numerous interceptions especially early on, but just lacks Song’s power and dynamism. Only going to ever offer limited gains, but did what he did rather well – reading the game and keeping possession.

Abou Diaby

Verdict: Glarse half full, glarse half empty. Flashes of good play, especially for the goal, winning the ball brilliantly and sending Theo through but oddly failed to repeat the trick a minute later. After that drifted in and out, not quite applying enough pressure nor doing enough with the ball when we got it. Arsenal fans expected more over the two legs.

Nasri

Verdict: Ditto Diaby, but without the goal-creating through ball. Like Diaby looked good in flashes but if Arsenal were to win the game he needed to perform like Cesc and then some.

Thomas Rosicky

Verdict: A mouse’s arse in the lion(el)’s cage. Feeble, irrelevant, though in all likelihood still feeling his injury. Rarely found a pass, offered no penetration of his own and totally exposed Gael Clichy. Fluffed the half-chance that came his way, but it would have taken a screamer to score from there anyway

Theo Walcott

Verdict: Below arse-pectations, even if those were mainly in the Spanish press. As ever, looked a threat when space opened up and will be disappointed his team-mates didn’t try and release him more, but looked typically rubbish in confined spaces under pressure. Light years away from Messi in terms of first touch and quick feet. Did also almost conspire to fuck up the goal – clearly lacking the on-pitch confidence to match his pre-game bullishness.

Nicklas Bendtner

Verdict: Covered his arse. Essentially did his job, as as much as could be expected by scoring, especially as Theo made it as difficult as possible for him. But will never be good enough to drag us single-handedly. Needs those behind him to play better to have a bigger impact. Dallied with one chance, and was very unlucky with his apparently offside header onto the post. A squad striker, and that’s no criticism.

Emmanuel Eboue

Verdict: Good in flarsehes. Didn’t quite offer the spark he could have. Very unlucky to be booked on the one occasion he was seriously pushing forward, and was really victim to the way Barcelona shut down the second half. Clearly they had learnt lessons from the first leg too.

Eduardo

Verdict Anonymarse. I’d honestly forgotten he’d come on. Not really his fault mind. Barca were hogging the ball

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Graci-arse in defeat. Didn’t look for excuses, admitting the simple fact that the best team in the world with the best player in the world got the job done. Sent his team out with the right attitude with the pressing clearly better than the first leg, but didn’t have the personnel to execute the marster plan.

TOP GUN

Clearly Gael Clichy. There’s much to be optimistic about with this Arsenal team in the next few years and the resurgence of Clichy is certainly a huge element. Once again sharp, nipping in front of opponents all over the pitch, winning headers he has no right to and using his pace brilliantly to set the tone going forward. One of the few in white who looked as though he had as much energy as the opposition.

Saturday 4th April: Arsenal 1 – Wolves 0

Posted by Andre the Giant

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Sparse. Very little to do throughout but never looked like making any of his terrible decisions. Caught the ball more times than the rest of the season combined. A well deserved clean sheet.

Bacary Sagna

Verdict: Adventurarse. Pushed a long way up the pitch. Broke in to the box and nearly scored then delivered the pin point perfect cross for big Nick to keep our premier league dreams alive. A1 performance.

Thomas Vermaelan

Verdict: Bad arse. TV really has been a revelation this season. His strength and commandeering makes such a difference at the back and as good cover as Song is, there really is no substitute. Combined well with Campbell but really didn’t have that much to do anyway.

Mikael Silvestre

Verdict: V-arse-t improvement. Looked stronger and more secure on the ball than usual and even showed a few touches of actual skill. Only about 50% of his crosses were any good but that’s a 100% better than his usual performances. Perhaps prof won’t be so scared to play him in the future.

Sol Campbell

Verdict: Not ready for the hearse just yet. Little to do but what he did do he did well enough. Also showed that he still has the passion, when we scored in the last minute, with some serious fist pumping celebrations.

Alex Song

Verdict: Anonymarse. Stayed well off my radar and substituted on 71 minutes for Samir Nasri. Had a couple of shooting opportunities but clearly out of his depth in this area. Needs creative assistance in order to excel in his more workmanlike role.

Emmanuel Eboue

Verdict: Mardi Grarse. Steadily becoming the most flamboyant of Arsenal players. Ran around a lot as usual but made way for Bendtner on 64. Still, he stayed in his kit until the end and didn’t even put on one of those ridiculous long bomber jacket training tops. A poor attempt at lifting Nick up after the final whistle, must try harder.

Rosicky

Verdict: Arse over tits. A jolly good all round performance oh so nearly cut short by the diabolical joke of a player Karl Henry. Nearly scored with his next touch on the ball and generally kept the pace going right up until the final whistle. Had some decent shots that might have gone in on another day.

Denilson

Verdict: Forgettable arse. I can only really remember one opportunity for a repeat of his West Ham goal but I think, otherwise, he may have had another decent game. I just don’t remember seeing any of it. We will need him as a creative resource without Cesc around for the forseable.

Theo Walcott

Verdict: Glarse half full, glarse half empty. The most up and down game you can imagine any player having. Some really sublime movement, pace and crossing but some real fucking guff too including a glaring miss late on. I believe Mr Capello was in the audience again so whether this helps his England chances who knows (and who cares, quite frankly)

Eduardo

Verdict: Sorry arse. Oh Eduardo, how I wish you would remember how to score a goal. Are you still haunted by the memory of your injury or are you just shit? Two or three big big chances, none of them taken. I am not sure how much longer prof will put up with this underperforming.

Substitutes:

Nicklas Bendtner

Verdict: Fabularse. Proved that keeping him on the bench was a dangerous game. Played the role of target man perfectly for 25 minutes and kept us in the title race by getting on the end of a late Sagna ball. As nonchalent in scoring as he is in missing, this makes up for every single scuff he’s made this season.

Carlos Vela

Verdict: Varsety. He must have been at the boat race because I certainly don’t remember him being at the Grove.

Samir Nasri

Verdict: Conspicuarse in his abscence until the last 20. Moved the ball round and created space. Considerably better than his efforts against the second best team in the world last week. Hopefully well rested for Tuesday’s return leg.

Arsene Wenger

Risky arse. Two risky verdicts in a row. Adopting a rotational policy was always going to be dangerous if the goods were not produced. Fortunately it didn’t lead to the end of our title challenge. Cue ‘this team are made of grit and nails and committed things’ in the post match press conference.

TOP GUN(s)

Walcott and Bendtner. Walcott started so strongly which is a nice change to playing strongly in the 65th minute, with a bit of luck could have helped us go two or three up in the first twenty minutes. Bendtner scoring his second crucial last minute goal in four games.

ARSEHOLE(S)

Mick McCarthy, the new Phil Brown, for applauding his own player for getting sent off and giving the home fans the finger. Messrs Hansen and Lawrenson for deliberately making an issue of the sending off just because it’s Arsenal and Arsene Wenger. You would not do that for any other team so go fucking fuck yourselves.

Wednesday 31st March: Arsenal 2 – Barcelona 2

Posted by SmartArse

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Saved our arse, then handed it to us on a plate. Made a string of absolutely fabul-arse saves in the first half but at fault for first goal and too often distributes over-quickly to defenders under pressure.

Gael Clichy

Verdict: Like a brand new arse. After frankly a few years below his best is starting to show signs of returning. Defended stoutly when under pressure and provided a genuine attacking threat with pace to really help push Alves back in the second half.

Thomas Vermaelan

Verdict: Hard arse. As ever flung himself in front of everything with a couple of crucial early challenges, but left Song exposed for both goals.

William Gallas

Verdict: Broken arse. Inevitably arsewiped after 40 minutes. Clearly back too early.

Bacary Sagna

Verdict: Anonym-arse. How I can fail to notice our right back when we were under such pressure is baffling.

Alex Song

Verdict: Up your arse. Did his best to compensate for his midfield partners’ lack of mobility in the first half. Largely made a nuisance of himself by repeatedly fouling Xavi. Caught out of position for both goals, but against a side as good as Barca you’re excused when playing in an unfamiliar position.

Abou Diaby

Verdict: Diabolical arse-shite from a man who’s been so pivotal recently. 1 burst 30 seconds in his only positive contribution. Couldn’t pass five yards, lost his first touch and didn’t contribute at all to putting pressure on Barca’s midfield.

Cesc Fabregas

Verdict: Half an arse. Full marks for effort but was clearly playing on one leg. Still potent when on the ball but lacked the sharpness to contribute at all defensively. Nearly broke the net, and possibly his own leg, with his penalty.

Andrey Arshavin

Verdict: Short arse. Given that he contributed absolutely nothing positive in his 20 minutes on the pitch insulting him is about as much as I can muster.

Samir Nasri

Verdict: Couldn’t be arsed. Sometimes inexcusable lack of effort, utterly failing to track Daniel Alves at any point. Will have to seriously pick it up in his favoured central role in the second leg.

Nicklas Bendtner

Verdict: Large arse. Utterly dominated Puyol in the air, but none of our midfield gambled on any of his numerous flick-ons. Still short of a proper first touch but was especially effective in the second half in opening up play when we were caught in tight areas. Great pass for Theo’s goal and equally top notch

Emmanuel Eboue

Verdict: A little cluel-arse. Offered his usual enthusiasm and threat but too often seemed to run out of ideas in the final third. Still, miles better than Arshavin and Sagna.

Theo Walcott

Verdict: Electric arse. Gave us a much needed boost. Exploited the space offered by Barca effectively playing wingers at fullback and gave them nightmares with his pace. Super touch for the goal and a perpetual threat thereafter. Probably first time this season the words ‘give it to Theo!’ were being screamed whenever we got the ball. Still best as an impact player, but worth a thought from the start next week.

Denilson

Verdict: A magnificent piece of rump. The best player in red and white. Did the work of the entire midfield with Song shunted back into defence. Several times won the ball, passed it to someone who gave it away, and then promptly won it straight back. Tracked back well into the box and showed the sort of energy clearly lacking elsewhere. Shame he couldn’t have just replaced Diaby instead. Now keep it up on a regular basis.

Arsene Wenger

Risky arse. How costly will the injuries be? Too many players rushed back to early, but then the alien basketball team from Space Jam couldn’t have held Fabregas from playing that game. Brought Theo on at the right time. Going permanently ape-shit with frustration on the side at his sides’ shortcomings.

TOP GUN(s)

Denilson and Walcott. The two substitutes totally changed the game. One did the donkey’s work, the other provided the cutting edge. Very heavily responsible for us still being in the tie.

Saturday March 20th: Arsenal 2 – West Ham 0

Posted by Sonuvagun

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Saved our Arse, by keeping out the penalty. Plus may have got a decisive touch on the Cole shot. Is there where we pretend we never doubted him?

Gael Clichy

Verdict: Arse of steel. Seems to have shaken off the jitters and indecision and put in another commanding performance. Even got over to the right flank at one stage to make a great covering tackle!

Thomas Vermaelen

Verdict: Unlucky Arse. The tiniest nudge in the back of Guillermo Franco was enough to not only concede a penalty but get sent off as well (WTF!). It was later revealed that Franco was listening to Five Star before the game.

Sol Campbell

Verdict: Lucky Arse. A steaming two-footed tackle could easily have got him sent off… luckily it was very well timed with lots of ball and not much man. Still…

Emmanuel Eboue

Verdict: Clever Arse. Can I just say how much I love Eboue 2.0. He’s dynamic, user-friendly… and more importantly he knows how to win a free kick. Exactly the kind of clever gamesmanship we often lack, and he played a vital role in keeping us in control of the game and running down the clock.

Denilson

Verdict: Glori-Arse. A truly sublime performance that will have more than a few Arse lovers revising their opinion of the Samba King. This vid tells you all you need to know.

Cesc Fabregas

Verdict: Stubbly Arse. Could do with waxing his cheeks, but nothing unsightly about his performance. Won and converted the penalty.

Samir Nasri

Verdict: Acceptable piece of Arse. Some neat play but no Messi-esque moments of magic this week.

Alex Song

Verdict: Imperi-Arse performance. Ran the midfield in the first half, and deputized well in defence in the second. I’d really rather not repeat the experiment though… I feel he could be exposed if asked to play at the back (without practice) for 90 mins.

Andrey Arshavin

Verdict: Ok piece of Arse. Didn’t pull off any magic, but I guess it’s not like waving a wand… got his touch wrong when Cesc played a glorious ball over the top.

Nicklas Bendtner

Verdict: A nice Arsist for Denilson’s goal. On good form.

Abou Diaby

Verdict: The strength of two Arses. After he came on for Bendtner you felt it was 11 vs. 11 again, as the big man made his impact on the game with his power and technique.

Bacary Sagna

Verdict: A solid bit of Arse, which enabled Eboue to wreak havoc on the right.

Eduardo

Verdict: Can’t be Arsed to rate another Eduardo cameo.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Ingeni-Arse substitutions meant that we barely missed our eleventh man. Song worked well at the back, and replacing Bendtner with Diaby was inspired because Diaby offered us more graft and less wayward passes – vital for preserving our lead.

TOP GUN: Denilson

Narrowly beat fellow anchorman, Alex Song, to Top Gun by virtue of his cool finish.

Saturday March 6th: Arsenal 3 – Burnley 1

Posted by Sonuvagun

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Quick Arse. Fast off his line to snuff out several moves. Got out-muscled trying to claim an aerial ball on one occasion and lucky that the opposing player blasted high.

Gael Clichy

Verdict: Right up the Arse of his opposite number for most of the afternoon. Hope he enjoyed it as much as we enjoyed watching…

Mikael Silvestre

Verdict: Arse Resort. Played due to injuries to Gallas and Campbell. Nervy start but generally not too awful after that.

Thomas Vermaelen

Verdict: Arsen-wall. The opposition simply couldn’t get around him… although they could get over him sadly. Still a very solid game for the most part.

Emmanuel Eboue

Verdict: Golden Arse. Another ‘Eboullient’ performance from the renaissance man, the highlight of which was a backheel flick of a one-two with Captain Fab. In the second half he made a 50 yard run with the ball thanks to one well-sold dummy! Plus 92% pass completion.

Denilson

Verdict: Team Arse. Did enough cleaning up in midfield to stave off his critics, although Burnley offered little fight to be fair. Played two lovely through balls that created goal-scoring chances and might have been assists on another night.

Cesc Fabregas

Verdict: Sore Arse. His hamstring obviously feeling the strain, but he lasted long enough to deftly stroke home Nasri’s defence-mocking pass.

Samir Nasri

Verdict: Class Arse. Played a sensational lobbed through ball (press Triangle and L1 button on Pro Evo) to Cesc to set up the opener. Scuffed a couple of shots in overdue attempts to get on the scoresheet but generally full of purpose and threat.

Theo Walcott

Verdict: Completely Arse-some performance that stuffed his critics’ words up their you-know-whats. Aside from a brilliantly take goal with his left peg, he gifted Bendtner three unmissable chances with his crossing… all of which were missed. Hopefully the performance that gets him back on track!

Tomas Rosicky

Verdict: Pumped Arse. Seemed up for it and drew a number of fouls with his running. Looking stronger as the season progresses.

Nicklas Bendtner

Verdict: Couldn’t hit a cow’s Arse… Laughably bad marksmanship by the big man with the big mouth as he missed three sitters and a number of other scorable opportunities. Got a tongue-in-cheek standing ovation from the incredulous fans.

Abou Diaby

Verdict: A nice bit of Arse. Did everything required of him with aplomb. Has turned from a liability into a key player in a remarkably short time.

Andrey Arshavin

Verdict: Cheeky Arse bastard. Seemed to inherit both Bendtner’s shooting boots and sense of mirth as he laughingly swung the banjo miles away from the nearest barn door, twice. Then celebrated his last gasp goal as if it was the winner and not a totally redundant strike. The little monkey!

Eduardo

Verdict: Toy Gun. Still miles away from looking like a real striker, and you wandered if Bendtner wasn’t more likely to score off his backside than Eduardo find the net. Looked favourite in a footrace with a Burnley defender… which he then proceeded to lose by a mile. Let’s hope a Theo-style second coming is on the cards.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Patient Arse. His faith in his players is admirable and more and more of them are repaying in kind. The future’s bright. The future’s red and white!

TOP GUN: Theo Walcott

Showed Waddle that he was talking twaddle with his best outing of the season.

Saturday February 27th: Stoke 1 – Arsenal 3

Posted by Sonuvagun

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Lucky Arse… got away with fumbling the ball under mild pressure when the ref blew. Otherwise did what was expected of him, but wasn’t tested. Brave, but futile, attempt to save the goal.

Bacary Sagna

Verdict: Tight arse. Can’t remember a single move down the left, so must have been doing something right! Let Eboue do most of the surging forward.

Sol Campbell

Verdict: Defiant arse. Strong at the back, dynamic going forward and suitably enraged by the Ramsey tackle. Good to have him back and fighting for the cause.

Thomas Vermaelen

Verdict: Complete arse… in a good sense. Intercepted and won almost every ball that came his way, had a go with a diving header and even turned up at the death to poke home his umpteenth goal of the season. No wonder the fans love him!

Gael Clichy

Verdict: Industrious arse. Got mugged once – but got away with it. Generally bustled with good effect on the left.

Alex Song

Verdict: Unlucky arse. How he got a yellow for running alongside Delap is beyond everyone but the referee. Covered every blade of grass as always, but his two game ban could arguably be more costly than Ramsey’s injury.

Cesc Fabregas (c)

Verdict: Absolutely Arsesome. A match winning performance full of grit, mental strength, composure and top class play. Fuck off Barcelona.

Aaron Ramsey

Verdict: Gunned down before his prime… horrible challenge with worse consequences for the youngster. Let’s hope he makes a full and speedy recover. (Incidentally was having a very good game and deserved a penalty).

Samir Nasri

Verdict: Unspectacular piece of arse. Decent-ish performance but a few too many wayward balls and not really justifying the millions spent on him right now.

Eboue

Verdict: Renaissance arse. Not scared to take a man on and his ability to win free kicks is useful in a team that is sometimes a bit too gauche. Decent shout at a penalty.

Nicholas Bendtner

Verdict: Very tasty piece of arse. Took his header as if Shawcross wasn’t there and won the crucial penalty. May never cultivate a truly great first touch but he’s a threat we’ve badly missed.

Tomas Rosicky

Verdict: Decent arse. Drove in the shot that led to the third goal.

Theo Walcott

Verdict: Anonymarse… again. Not given much time to be fair.

Eduardo

Verdict: Misfiring gun. Had a golden chance to seal it at 1-1 but pulled his shot wide.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Furi-arse. Understandably livid at seeing another of the great talents he has nurtured taken out by ‘tough’ tactics… what has to happen before the press vilifies this type of challenge? Oh, I know, an Arsenal player – preferably a black foreign one – has to commit such a tackle on an English international. Until then there’s plenty more ankles at the Emirates that need breaking.

TOP GUN

Fabregas. A captain’s performance that was exemplary right down to the baiting of the opposition’s manager.

Sunday February 7th: Chelsea 2 – Arsenal 0

Posted by Andre The Giant

Manuel Almunia

Verdict: Going going gun. Not particularly at fault for either goal although appeared to want to get out of the way of Dogba’s second and remained rooted to the spot for the free kick off the bar. Surely it’s only a matter of time before he’s back in the Spanish second division.

Bacary Sagna

Verdict: Hard arse. Solid as always, if only we could replicate him and have an entire back four of white dreadlocked Frenchies

William Gallas

Verdict: Stubborn arse. Needs to arouse the captain within to provide some guidance for our shambles of a defence

Thomas Vermaelen

Verdict: Melty Belgian Chocolarse. Sliced a few clearances and generally not as authoratative as we have come to expect. Would be nice to see the big belgian in a more advanced position a la beginning of the season to provide some height for the aimless crosses.

Gael Clichy

Verdict: Arsehole. Ran away from Drogba for the second, not a decent cross all game. Who has stolen the real Gael Clichy?! Please can we have him back?

Alex Song

Verdict: Arse over tit. Lost Drogba in the sixth minute putting us on the back foot for the next 80. Strong otherwise but that mistake has probably cost us the league.

Cesc Fabregas (c)

Verdict: Fine arse. Not a match winning performance (well, dur!) but provided some strength and invention. Played a bit deep for my liking but could have been a lot worse without him. Booked for running next to Dogma.

Samir Nasri

Verdict: Kick in the arse. An unmemorable performance. So much so, I can’t actually remember anything he did. Actually, yeah I do, didn’t pull the trigger when he had the chance in the area, should have scored.

Abou Diaby

Dennis Rodmarse. Good to see him in the starting line up again. Provides much needed strength and a bit of calmness to the middle. Needs to push forward more.

Andrey Arshavin

Verdict: Half pint glarse. Had the best chance of the first half with a well saved side footed volley. Not looking like scoring another 4 goals in one game any time soon though.

Theo Walcott

Verdict: Half cocked gun. Starting for the first time in about a season. Good pace as always but nothing even vaguely near the goal. Got a lot to do if he really wants to be like Thiery.

Eboue

Verdict: Arsey. Positive for the 15 minutes he was on the pitch. Running around a lot and generally tried to get things going.

Rosicky

Verdict: Bit Part Arse. Would have liked to see him on the pitch much earlier than the 74th minute.

Bendtner

Verdict: Flailing Arse. Arms and legs all over the place, won a couple of valuable free kicks and should have had a penalty. Clearly not 100% yet but nice to have an actual striker on the pitch for a change.

TOP GUN

Fabregas. Couldn’t pull the rabit out of the hat, but tried and tried and tried again.

Sunday January 3rd: West Ham 1 – Arsenal 2 (FA Cup)

Fabianski

Verdict: Anvil. Soaked up a hammering with a steely performance that should keep Almunia on his toes.

Sagna

Verdict: Firm arse. Just solid enough.

Gallas

Verdict: Solid arse. Not his best game but lots of important plays when the chips were down.

Vermaelen

Verdict: Half-arsed. Out-muscled at times, out of position at others and downright slack when Stanislas nearly doubled the West Ham lead. Did get a bit better towards the end.

Silvestre

Verdict: Questionable arse. I think Wenger is the only person in the world who rates Silvestre. I would have played Traore and spared us all some nervy moments.

Song

Verdict: Rampant arse. Yet another commanding display from young Alex, who did more than his fair share of blade covering. Is he the best holding midfielder in the land? We’re going to miss him during the African Nations!

Ramsey

Verdict: Well-rounded arse. The youngster looks more and more the complete midfielder as he combined good defensive work with composure on the ball and a tidy finish for the first goal.

Merida

Verdict: Arsed up. Failed to establish an understanding with the forwards and too many of his passes went wayward.

Wilshere

Verdict: Still-too-young-gun. Nearly guilty of gifting West Ham their best chance when he managed to lose the ball (twice!) in a dangerous area. Some nice touches but lacks experience.

Vela

Verdict: Patient arse. Kept his belief despite an anonymous start and made two assists.

Eduardo

Verdict: Loaded gun. Looked like he had the safety catch for most of the match, only to discharge a cleverly won header for the winning goal. Could have grabbed another, but his job was done.

Diaby

Verdict: Power arse. Lots of surging and flexing and penetrating. All good clean fun.

Nasri

Verdict: Essential arse. We didn’t know how much we missed the little Frenchman’s composure and distribution until they were gone.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Lucky arse. Gambled on a slightly understrength side but had just enough firepower on the bench to turn the match when it all started to go horribly wrong.

TOP GUN

Aaron Ramsey. Amongst the most composed of the Arsenal players in the first half and did extremely well for his goal.

Sunday December 27th: Arsenal 3 – Aston Villa 0

Almunia

Verdict: Unflappable arse. No wobbles today as our keeper looked as confident as we’ve seen him all season.

Traore

Verdict: Fine piece of arse. His pace was useful vs. the Villa forwards and his cross field pass set up the second goal. Hard to believe he’s our third choice left back!

Vermaelen

Verdict: Determined arse. Marshalled a defence that never looked likely to concede.

Gallas

Verdict: Bossy arse. Dished out plenty of advices at set pieces and generally solid. Good leadership skills.

Sagna

Verdict: Consistent arse.

Arshavin

Verdict: Short arse. Didn’t appreciate the aerial balls and also struggled with his back to goal. Livened up once Fab took centre stage.

Song

Verdict: Hard arse. Was everywhere, won everything, or at least committed an appropriate foul.

Denilson

Verdict: Ok arse.

Diaby

Verdict: Renaissance arse. If his game gets any rounder I swear Titian will dust off his brushes and paint it. Nicely taken goal.

Nasri

Verdict: Team arse. Worked hard to close down various Villans. Always looks comfortable on the ball.

Eduardo

Verdict: Loose cannon. Needs to step up his shooting pronto.

Fabregas

Verdict: Captain Fabulous. 25 mins, 2 goals, 3 points. Thank ye very much.

Walcott

Verdict: Improved piece of arse. Still not at his threatening best but nice assist.

Ramsay

Verdict: Substitute arse.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Wise old arse. Kept Cesc on the bench until it became clear we needed him to provide the difference. Took him off again at the first sign of a strain…

TOP GUN: Cesc Fabregas. A brilliant cameo… let’s hope his hamstring is ok!

Sunday December 13th: Liverpool 1 – Arsenal 2

Entire Arsenal team

Verdict: Spanked Arse. Wenger laid into the boys at half time and laid down the law, sparking a game-changing second half performance. Apparently Fabregas has never seen Le Prof so pissed off!

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Arse of Fury! Good to see Le Prof abandon the clipboard and go for some route one management style with a traditional kick up the collective backside of the troops.

Saturday December 5th: Arsenal 2 – Stoke 0

Almunia

Verdict: Shaky Arse – Not much to do but looked a bit unconvincing on Delap’s long throws. Possibly haunted by last year’s disastrous loss.

Sagna

Verdict: Firm Arse. A very solid performance, and got foward well, even if his crosses were never likely to reach an Arsenal forehead.

Gallas

Verdict: Tight Arse. Another reliable performance from Big Willy.

Vermaelen

Verdict: Tight Arse. Along with the rest of the defence restricted Stoke to almost no chances.

Traore

Verdict: Fine piece of Arse… an accomplished performance that belies his years and experience. Be interesting to see if he can keep his place when Clichy and Kibbs return.

Eboue

Verdict: Pottered about all over the pitch. Mostly for the good, but had every Arsenal fan cursing his name when he cleared Fabregas’ shot off the line.

Fabregas

Verdict: Slapped Arse. Spent most of the first half on the floor appealing to the referee who refused to blow for anything all afternoon. Then missed a penalty. Brushed himself off to create the opener.

Denilson

Verdict: Solid Arse. Did such a good job of protecting the back four, that Gallas and Verm were often tempted to roam forward to put a foot on the ball.

Nasri

Verdict: Another solid if unspectacular piece of Arse. Decent defending and passing. Could have scored if he kept his composure instead of appealing for handball.

Rosicky

Verdict: Sore Arse. Played one or two nice passes before picking up another niggle.

Arshavin

Verdict: Peachy Arse. Was both firm and tasty for his goal, shrugging off one defender before a sublime finish. Was able to drop and link play in a way that Eduardo wasn’t able to vs. Chelsea and all in all looking mouthwatering up front where his chicanery also created a penalty.

Ramsey

Verdict: Stoked to get on the score sheet so soon after his introduction. Good to see the youngster not afraid to shoot, with Cesc calling for the ball in the box.

Vela

Verdict: Hard Arse. With Traore getting treatment Vela took it upon himself to slot in as left back. Minutes later he put in a crowd-pleasing slide tackle to dispossess Stoke and start the move for the second goal.

Silvestre

Verdict: Cameo piece of Arse. Managed not to score an own goal in his short showing.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Smart Arse. A stroke of genius to play Arshavin up front in the ‘Van Persie role’. The Russian reveled in his new responsibility, dropping deep, linking up play, finding space in the box, and generally scaring the shit of out Stoke defenders. Only some wasteful finishing and bad luck (Eboue!) stopped the game from turning into a rout.

TOP GUN

Arshavin… yep we love the little fella!

Sunday November 29th: Arsenal 0 – Chelsea 3

Almunia

Verdict: Arsed up – Nothing he could do about the first goal, but should have called for the second and got nowhere near Drogba’s freekick.

Sagna

Verdict: Cole lotta bother – Mr. Tweedy’s delivery was sadly unimpeded for the two decisive balls that took us out of the running. Lucky not to give away a penalty for what was a definite foul/the finest tackle you’ve ever seen on Anelka.

Gallas

Verdict: Drog-meat – lost the Ivorian for the first goal and his desperate lunge for the second, with Drogba looming again, helped cause the own-goal.

Vermaelen

Verdict: Same as Gallas, with his thigh scoring the OG.

Traore

Verdict: Wobbly Arse, at least to begin with. After getting a yellow could have been a weak spot in our defense but grew in confidence and pleased to have him on board.

Song

Verdict: Acceptable piece of Arse. Did his job and was a shame to see him subbed.

Fabregas

Verdict: Arsed questions of the Chelsea defense, but they were from The Weakest Link rather than University Challenge. Pointless foul led to third goal.

Denilson

Verdict: Could have Arsed for more. At one point gave the ball away to Anelka but barely broke into a jog in an attempt to win it back.

Nasri

Verdict: Blue in the face. Worked hard and kept the ball well, but his turns slowed down play when are only chance of scoring was to be direct.

Arshavin

Verdict: Dirty Arse – the 5’4″ Ruski revealed a new side of himself, winning countless scrappy little tackles and committing an impressive 7 fouls without getting booked. Seemed to be looking for the absent Van Persie.

Eduardo

Verdict: Blue crush – swallowed by blue shirts when anywhere near the ball and his touch was definitely more Croatian than Brazilian on the night.

Walcott

Verdict: Arse in need of exercise. Hasn’t got a decent run of games under his belt and struggling to live up to his promise. Hopefully will play in Carling Cup.

Rosicky

Verdict: Frustrated Arse. Didn’t get the penetration he wanted.

Vela

Verdict: Arse over tit for a half decent penalty claim. Difficult game and system for the Mexican to shine in.

Arsene Wenger

Verdict: Over Arse-timated his troops. More of a football philosopher than arch-tactician Le Prof needs to rely less on his players’ skills and instill a bit more boring boring Arsenal into the team. Instead we flooded forward into Chelsea’s painfully obvious trap.

TOP GUN

Hard to award under the circumstances, but for someone supposedly pining over his country’s World Cup exit, Arshavin‘s efforts were nothing short of heroic, even if his rewards were nothing short of nothing.