Goodbye Newcastle & Middlesborough

So Newcastle United & Middlesborough both get relegated. It was a sad Sunday for the English game. Newcastle is steeped in tradition and memorable moments. Just a few years ago Allan Shearer and his boys were competing in the Champions League. Now they will face the lower rung teams (I’m not putting them down but United are in different league). And the sad part will be that they will be forced to sell off their best players due to the reduce in revenue.

Same goes for Middlesborough; although their club might not be as storied as Newcastles. I have seen some exciting Boro matches but the majority have been of a duller & slower paced nature. Nevertheless, I will miss them too. I hope the return back for both teams will be in a year’s time.

Do Or Die For Newcastle, Boro & Sunderland

I watch English Premier League matches on a regular basis and as much as I am a die hard Arsenal supporter, I am not oblivious to the charms of some of the other wonderful football clubs in England. Or in Spain, Italy, Germany & Holland for that matter. But due to many reasons, I’ve been able to follow the English league in more depth than the others. So it saddens me to know that two clubs with a rich history & colourful players & fans – Newcastle United & Middlesborough – might get relegated after the final round of games tonight. I’m also including another club, Sunderland, who happen to be local rivals of the aforementioned two.

I myself can’t imagine anything more English than having a pint or two at the pub with your mates and then heading over to watch late afternoon/evening football matches. Imagine the disappointment for the fans of these clubs if they do go down and get relegated. Sunderland have the advantage as, due to superior goal difference, they will get relegated only if both Boro & Newcastle do win tonight. With 36 points at the moment, Sunderland were tipped by many at the start of the season to go immediately. The departure of Roy Keane before Christmas didn’t help stability and, having spent most of the year in lower mid-table, they would consider themselves unlucky to be relegated.

What can I say about Newcastle United? Traditionally a big club with massive local support, not long ago they were in the Champions League. This season they have suffered from local favourite Kevin Keegan being out of favour with the owner and leaving in September. Joe Kinnear took after as coach after Keegan’s departure and seemed to be an able replacement, until heart trouble in February brought an end to his term. Messiah & former star captain Alan Shearer came on board with just 8 games left. The club have big name stars like Michael Owen & Mark Viduka but have failed to build on their success in the first half of the decade.

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download the list Boro had had a decent start to the 2008-09 season and many thought they would have enough to secure a mid-table finish at the very least. But come January it all started going downhill for them. Speculation over the future of Stewart Downing didn’t help, but the decision to stick with inexperience coach (and former captain) Gareth Southgate could be the one that hurts them. It will be a shame of Newcastle goes down and I would miss them. Boro too but Sunderland have been a bit boring the years that I have seen them. Nonetheless, these clubs have character & history and they have enviable fan bases.

Arsenal 0 Manchester United 0

On a night that Manchester United needed just one point to clinch the league title, Arsenal showed up and made the reds fight for that point. Arsenal should have been dejected and folded against a very strong Man U who were almost celebrating the league title before the match even began.

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There were plenty of chances at both ends but the finishing left a lot to be desired. After losing to Manchester United twice in the Champions League, the Gunners will take some satisfaction in not laying down and letting United run rampant. They were made to fight for the single point that ensured that United cannot be caught by Liverpool in the league standings and although they would have liked to win the game and then take the title, Arsenal had other plans.

the beverly hillbillies online But this game reminds us of who much we need to improve if we are to get back to the glory days and win some silverware. Arsenal create well, weave in & out of the midfield area and a treat to watch. But they have been failing where in matters the most – in the opponents penalty area! We need to score more goals. Arsene Wenger musy now go out and buy. Sell a few fringe players and buy name players. It’s the only way.

Arsenal Lose Champions League Semis

Wednesday does not start well; getting the scores of last night’s Champions League Semifinal second leg between Arsenal & Manchester United. It’s put a dark & heavy cloud over my activities for the day.

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Arsenal were beaten 1-3 at their own grounds as first half goals by Park Ji-Sun and Ronaldo effectively buried us. In the second half another Ronaldo goal sealed the deal and the only consolation was a penalty goal that Robin Van Persie converted. United defenceman Darren Fletcher was shown the red card for a tackle on Cesc Fabregas.

So that, as they say, is that. Arsenal’s season has all but ended, with nothing to show for it. We did have to struggle to get into the top 4 and therein Champions League playoff position for the next season. The Gunners will finish either 3rd or 4th. Here’s hoping that Wenger will see the light and finally start splurging and buy some top class big name players.

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Arsenal 3 Portsmouth 0

Arsenal rested most of their big guns in view of the important  mid-week match but still proved to be too good for Portsmouth and costed to victory.

Arsene Wenger made eight changes from the starting XI at Old Trafford, with the likes of captain Cesc Fabregas, Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor and regular goalkeeper Manuel Almunia all rested.

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However, the young Gunners, skippered by Andrey Arshavin who cannot play in Europe, again showed their potential as a brace from Nicklas Bendtner – his first after a blunder from England keeper David James – and a clinical second-half strike by Mexican Carlos Vela sealed a comfortable victory.

Arsenal need their top players healthy for the showdown with Manchester United. United lead 1-0 after the first leg held at Old Trafford.

Arsenal 2 Middlesborough 0

Stating that this would a perfect preparation for his side, Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal side beat a relegation threatened Middlesborough 2-0.

Captain Cesc Fabregas scored two goals at the Emirates as his club all but secured in fourth place following a run of 20 league matches without defeat.

download life less ordinary a movie download seraphim falls movie Next up is the Champions League and Manchester United! We’re coming to get you Alex!

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Arsenal 4 Wigan Athletic 1

When I heard the half time score of 1-0 to Wigan, I was afraid that Arsenal would succumb as they had been doing to much less talented teams as they been prone to in the last year.

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The only downside for Wenger was that Johan Djourou sustained a knee injury and is likely to miss the Champions League match against Villarreal on Wednesday.

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Arsenal 2 Manchester City 0

I got the chance to see an in form Arsenal beat Manchester City 2-0 at the Emirates stadium today evening. Togolese striker Emmaneul Adebayor was the main instigator for the Gunners as he scored a brace of goals, both being set up by a returning Cesc Fabregas.

How we have missed the skills of the Spanish midfielder! The Spain international had been out for three months with a knee injury, but marked his comeback in some style to set up a goal for Adebayor in each half. With Adebayor also now firing on all cylinders following his eight-week spell out of action because of a hamstring problem, Arsene Wenger’s squad could just be set for a vintage end to what has been a testing season as they prepare for a Champions League quarter-final and an FA Cup semi-final against Chelsea at Wembley.

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Arsenal 4 Blackburn 0

Desperate for goals and a win in the Premier league. No club has gone 4 consecutive games without scoring a goal – will Arsenal be the first? Sorry people, we cannot help you there. Arsenal outclassed a gritty Blackburn and rode out a 4-0 victory at the Emirates Stadium. Arsenal had failed to score in their last three Premier League games at The Emirates, but it took them only 75 seconds against Rovers to end that barren run.

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Newly recruited Russian Andriy Arshavin shined through scoring 2 goals, although the first one looked like he  had pressured Andre Ooijer into putting through his own net. But what was surprising – nay astonishing – was that Emmanuel Eboue was cheered when he came on as substitute and then scored two goals, including a penalty, himself. And no, they weren’t own goals!

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Even if it was a good performance by the Gunners, what I will most remember about this match is the hammed up acting by Blackburn’s Morten Gamst Pedersen. With the ball moving away from the goal but still in the penalty box, Pedersen took a dive and claimed a foul. Only thing is the refree did not fall for it and the replays showed how silly the thing was as the nearest player, Sagna, was no where near Pedersen’s legs. The bugger was lucky that the ref didn’t give him a card.

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Yet Another Draw For Arsenal

Arsenal are not scoring goals. The midfield is lacking in creativity and not offering good service to the strikers. We can’t buy goals at the moment.  The Gunners need a solid target man and who ever though that Bendtner is one! Without Arshavin, Van Persie, Almunia, Fabregas, Nasri, Gallas & Adebayor the squad looks mediocre.

These are the thoughts that faced me as I watched a toothless Arsenal try to beat Sunderland. We’re talking Sunderland over here and not a big team. How can Arsene Wenger possibly believe that his team is capable of winning anything? Sure when they turn on the skillful passing game it’s sweet and the best thing in football. But when they are not on, the passing turns out to be boring. The only bright spot was that Andry Arshavin looked sharp on his debut. He almost scored twice in the first 15 minutes of the game.

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10 Man Arsenal Hold On To A Draw @ Spurs

10 man Arsenal held on to a draw at White Hart Lane after the most ridiculous 2 yellow & therefore red card mess that I have ever seen in my life. When you look back and see the results at a later  date all you will see is the score sheet. It will not tell you that it was an entertaining 0-0 goalless draw and that the numbskull baboon Eboue got himself sent off in the first half.

Winger Emmanuel Eboue saw red after picking up two needless yellow cards in the first half, while the Gunners also had to cope with the loss of striker Emmanuel Adebayor who pulled up with what looked like a serious hamstring problem. The first yellow was for disent as three times he went yakking against the refree for a foul called on one of his teammates, Baccary Sagna against Luka Modric. First of all, only the captain should go to the ref. And second, the refree Mike Dean gave him enough opportunity to back away. The donkey didn’t listen and got booked!

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Modric and Eboue clashed on the near touchline as they had been for the first half hour of the match. The referee had seen enough to caution both men – showing Eboue, who kicked out to trip the Spurs man, a second yellow card followed by a red. His actions were both stupid and the asshole deserves to be suspended and probably fined. He let his team down. But the remaining 10 men bravely went on to attack and had chances to win the game as well.

There was another hold up when Arsenal’s Gael Clichy received treatment for a cut following a clash of heads with Bent and was replaced by Kieran Gibbs. He was bleeding quite profusely and may require quite a few stiches.  I think if it wasn’t for the send off, Arsenal could have won by a goal or 2 but that ignoramus had to be stupid and ruin it. I think Arsene Wenger should haul Eboue’s ass for a drill down or just toss the bum outta the Emirates Stadium. He’s proved to be too costly for the team and we’ll be much better without that jackass.

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Spurs Game May Not Be Debut For Arshavin

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Tomorrow’s North London derby game against Tottenham Hotspurs will probably not see the awaited debut of Andrey Arshavin. The 27-year-old new signing is currently travelling back from Russia after obtaining his visa. He is scheduled to arrive on Friday night however, with only 10 days of pre-season training under his belt with Zenit St Petersburg, Arsène Wenger was suggesting the midfielder may miss out.

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The Russian star’s move to Emirates Stadium was confirmed late on Tuesday afternoon – 24 hours after the transfer window closed. The timing of the announcement raised a few eyebrows among the footballing fraternity with Aston Villa and Reading reportedly concerned that Arsenal had missed the deadline.

Meanwhile we have Eboue back and the much maligned player must use this oppurtunity to get some fan support back. I always look forward to 3 matchups with much glee every year for Arsenal – Manchester United, Chelsea & Liverpool being the other 3 big clubs. But it’s always extra special against the fellow North Londoners. Bring it on!

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Arsenal 0 West Ham 0

Arsenal did nothing to help their very slim chances of winning the league by failing to pull the trigger in their match against West Ham United. Playing at their home ground, the Gunners had the majority of ball possession and the chances but a determined West Ham foiled a victory. Abou Diaby saw an early header deflected onto the crossbar, and Emmanuel Adebayor missed two good chances in the second half, while even the introduction of leading scorer Robin van Persie from the bench could not conjure up a winner.

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the bank job movie download Meanwhile, in a match I saw this evening, Aston Villa went at with gusto but could just not find the back of the net in a often thrilling 0-0 draw against Wigan Athletic. And Bolton held off & survived a Tottenham Hotspurs revival to clinch a 3-2 victory.

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Arsenal 1 Everton 1

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download it movie Arsenal were able to salvage a draw at the very end of a match that they just had to win. Robin van Persie’s stunning injury-time strike gave Arsenal a point they barely deserved at Everton. Van Persie’s brilliant left-foot volley rescued Arsenal – but not before another resilient Everton performance dented their faltering title hopes.

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Arsenal 3 Hull City 1

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Arsenal gained revenge along with a better showing since recent weeks to beat Hull City 3-1. It also extended their unbeaten run to eight games and avenged their shock loss to Hull at the Emirates Stadium in September. Hull had looked set to frustrate the Gunners for the second time this season when Daniel Cousin cancelled out Emmanuel Adebayor’s first-half opener after 65 minutes.

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But the KC Stadium visitors produced a strong finish and snatched victory with goals in the final nine minutes from Samir Nasri and substitute Nicklas Bendtner. It was the perfect response from the Gunners after wins earlier in the day from Manchester United, Chelsea and Aston Villa. Arsenal stay in the 5th position.

Arsenal Low On Fire Power But Still Win

watch smart people online Seemingly low in fire power, Arsenal had to rely on an 84th minute winner by Denmark striker Nicklas Bendtner to nudge ahead 1-0 against a resilient Bolton. The Dane came off the bench to fire a late winner as Arsenal finally ended up as victors against stubborn resistance in a 1-0 win at Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners had dominated possession, but failed to unlock the visitors, who put 10 men behind the ball. However, just when time looked to be running out, Bendtner arrived at the far post to volley in a first goal since November and renew hopes Arsene Wenger’s men can force their way back into the race for the Barclays Premier League title.

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Following Aston Villa’s win over West Brom, the Gunners were again playing catch up on the top four, but moved level on points with Manchester United – who host Chelsea on Sunday and already have two games in hand.

The Couple From Utrecht

I left my apartment at around 1 pm to go buy a new belt for myself yesterday. I really like the style of the one I bought. Then it was on to Cafe Coffee day where I had cookies and a mocha frappe.

While I was there, a Dutch couple walked in and sat at the table right in front of me. It seems that they were lost and tired from wandering out in the hot sun, they came in for some coffee and some sandwiches. They asked the waiter the way back to their hotel & about a couple of places they had wanted to go to. Since the waiter did not know the places and I had overheard them, I offered to help them with directions.

the mark of cain online download For the next hour & a half, I sat with the Dutch couple from Utrecht – he was black Dutch-Surinamese and she was white – and we chatted about Dutch football and some of our favourite players. It was fun to sit there and talk about Overmars & Bergkamp, the De Boer brothers and many other famour footballers of the past from Holland.

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Arsenal 1 Portsmouth 0

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After the break, Adebayor and Samir Nasri missed chances before Gallas got in front of David James to nod home the winner from Denilson’s cross. The result lifts Arsenal to fourth place in the table, above Aston Villa, by virtue of having scored one more goal than Martin O’Neill’s side, who next play on Tuesday. And while we are on this match, the papers reported the rumour that Portsmouth midfielder Niko Kranjcar is a traget for the Gunners in January.