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Pundits Miss The Point As It’s A Case Of ‘What If?’ Again For Arsenal

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Arsenal crashed out of the Champions League after losing 3-1 to Barcelona at the Nou Camp, but the scoreline doesn’t tell the whole story does it? Firstly, no doubt Barca played us off the park and are an awesome side  but for the second year running we are left to wonder ‘what if’ after a poor refereeing display at the Nou Camp.

Firstly, let’s talk about Captain Cesc. What on earth was he thinking?! We were 2 minutes from getting into half time at 0-0. We were awful in the first half and to get in at 0-0 would have been a massive boost and give Arsene a chance to regroup. But all that was blown out of the water with a crazy back-heel on the edge of the area. Schoolboy stuff Cesc. I can’t for the life of me understand why you did that. 2 seconds and a couple of pieces of magic later and we’re 1-0 down and chasing the game. Crazy.

We were fortunate to get back on level terms through an own goal, but it was game on now! We were back ahead on aggregate and this would have had the players buzzing again. So what happens, another despicable referring decision changes everything. Only the ref will know how he felt Van Persie deserved a second yellow for that.

My understanding of the rule is that a player deserves a yellow card for kicking the ball away as a sign of anger or disrespect towards the officials. This ALWAYS happens when a player is upset and disagrees with the decision. To do that, the player needs to know what decision he disagrees with or is angry at. Did Van Persie kick the ball in anger? Did he know the ref had blown up? Did he know he was offside? Was it 3-5 seconds after realising the decision and threw the ball at the ref in anger? The answer to all the above is NO. It was quite simply a ridiculous decision and no matter what the so-called ‘experts say, it did change the game.

We will never know how the game would have panned out at 1-1 with 11vs11, thats the simple fact of the matter. Nobody would have given us a hope of winning at the Emirates after 60 minutes when we were 1-0 down but we did, so who’s to say we couldn’t turn things round this time?! Any football fan knows the better side doesn’t always get what they deserve, i mean Arsenal fans will know this better than most.

We are the better side in 99% of the games we play but we don’t always get the 3 points now do we?! Would Sunderland have argued had they lost on Saturday? No, because we were the better side. But due to a bit of luck, good keeping and more bad refereeing they left with a point. These things happen in football and for all we know last night could have been one of those times when the better side didn’t get the win.

But we will never know because another decision has gone against us at the Nou Camp and we’re out. What do people remember from the second leg at the Nou Camp last year? Messi destroying us and scoring four goals right? Well does anyone remember the fact we went 1-0 up in that game and would have gone 2-0 up had the linesman not WRONGLY flagged Bendtner offside? No of course they don’t, it’s history now but it could all have been very different that night had the decisions gone our way just as it could have been last night.

No Arsenal fan could argue the better side went through on the night as Barcelona were unplayable at times, but once again it is the manner of the defeat that is hard to take for Gooners. Ironically we could and probably should have nicked that crucial second away goal in the 88th minute with our first real attempt on goal. But Bendtner showed everyone just how far from being ‘World Class’ he really is.

Stay positive Gooners, they tell us these things even themselves out over the season. If so, we’ve got some luck heading our way soon!

Here is video highlights of Barcelona 3-1 Arsenal



  1. charles

    March 9, 2011 at 10:02 am

    Good article. Exactly the point that needs to be made.
    Up the Arsenal, we still in it.

  2. phil

    March 9, 2011 at 10:14 am

    To be fair a lot of pundits are making the same point; it was a totally obnoxious piece of refereeing and not the only example of Barca being favoured. Probably three or four times barca were whistled offside, continued the phase of play and were not yellow carded; the grabbing of Robin’s neck in the “hand bags”. Having said that and to show that I do not look at things from a totally biased point of view, Barca could have had a penalty in the first half when not even a free kick was given.
    And ‘yes’ they were far superior to us in all but a few moments of the game.
    But indeed ‘what if…….?”

  3. Chuck Simmons

    March 9, 2011 at 10:53 am

    Total blame must lie with Wenger. Three major mistakes,
    1st Parking the bus, second starting Rosicky instead of Arshavin and Third, playing two unfit players in Fab & RVP.

  4. samuel

    March 9, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Not Cesc.s fault if dozy Clichy has another one of his calamitous lapses of concentration,again as both Djourou and Koscielny had moved to the edge of Scsezny,s box while Clichy was a yard or two behind them in the box enabling Messi to move forward without being caught offside,the other goal was an own goal/deflection off Sagna who dived in way to late and deflected the ball past Almunia who had it covered anyway,like i said before the match watch out for our two inept wingers,and so it proved ?

  5. blon

    March 9, 2011 at 5:06 pm

    cesc is god. if it was denilson that did that i would hate him so much,. but cesc? cant blame him hes the prince of arsenal.

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