Report: Arsenal 2-2 Boca Juniors

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It was a tale of two halves as Arsenal began their defence of the prestigious Emirates Cup.

Opponents Boca Juniors proved troublesome at times, testing Arsenal’s offside trap and high line, while the home team looked lively, especially through new boy Gervinho.

And it was the Ivorian who caused the most problems, a darting run setting up Robin van Persie for a right footed effort which went wide. Later, Arsenal broke down the right hand side, Gervinho delayed his pass and this time van Persie finished with his right from close range.

Early in the second half Arsenal went 2-0 up. Carlos Vela’s run was halted on the edge of the box and Aaron Ramsey followed up to smash it home.

The game was played at pre-season pace and the Gunners were heading for the win before Sebastian Squillaci and Johan Djourou reminded Arsene Wenger why a centre-half ought to be top of his shopping list.

Firstly, the Frenchman gave the ball away in midfield, Riquelme drove on, played it to some bloke and some bloke smashed it past second half keeper Vito Mannone. Then, Djourou should have cleared a ball inside the area, but instead sort of waved his foot at the ball whilst falling over, allowing some other bloke to slide it home for the equaliser.

The defensive failings won’t come as any surprise to Arsenal fans but on a positive note we defended set-pieces pretty well. That is to say we didn’t concede from one, the first time that has happened since the beginning on the 1978 season.

Other positives included Gervinho, an assured performance from Emmanuel Frimpong, and another promising pre-season display from new boy Carl Jenkinson.

Tomorrow the Gunners take on Thierry Henry’s New York Red Bulls in the final game of the tournament.

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NB

No mention of Nasri captaincy?

argonaut

Can’t say he was overly impressive today. Maybe we should just take Citeh’s money.

ken

There goes our best chance for silverware this season.

NB

At least we’re in the running to qualify for next year

Stephen

From the Boca game looks like Arsene and the defenders learned nothing. Rarely won balls from set pieces. First goal squillaci gave ball away. Second was a hole between squillaci and djourou followed by a missed tackle by djourou. Messy. I did like what I saw from koscielny in the first half. His passes created a lot if great counter attacks.

Hurley

Hello? We looked rubbish at the back because none of those players will be part of our first choice back four next season!

Stephen

None of those should be AT the club. Those mistakes shouldn’t be made by any Premier League defenders.

Jasonisimo

They are all the time, and Arsenal benefits from them. But yeah, Djourou needs to improve mightily.

5am

if nasri was made captain then I can’t believe how much arse lickin wenger’s prepared to do….not what I’d call the right image of a ‘big club’

Junichi

But he did wear the armband last year when Cesc, Vermaelen, Rosiscky and RVP were not on the pitch. Why change that? Because he hasn’t sign a new contract? Who should have wear it? Chamakh? Arshavin? Mannone? Squillaci? Djourou? Jenkinson? Traoré? Eboué? Frimpong? Ramsey?

NB

Djourou

Ringo Star

RVP is team vice captain,He should have wear it . YEP, Wenger is arse kissing

argonaut

In the absence of TV5, RVP, Cesc and Rosicky, my next choice would be Ramsey. Not the want-away Frenchman.

JamesM

Bit difficult for van Persie to be the captain when he wasn’t on the pitch. Did you watch the game?

Badaab

Ramsey is entirely too young to shoulder the responsibility of being captain. He’s also not very vocal. Out of the players we had on the pitch, Arshavin is the most experienced, then Squillaci, then Nasri. Giving Samir a bit of added responsibility might have been Wenger’s way of saying to him “I have my eye on you.” As for the order last season it was: Cesc, RvP, Almunia, Rosicky, Vermaelen. This year, I believe it will be: Cesc, RvP, Vermaelen, Rosicky. I’d also like to see Sagna’s name on the list. While he’s not a vocal player, he leads by… Read more »

5am

hurley – they will when injuries start kickin in……

Jrk

That is the main fear and horror if injuries should reduce us to central defensive pairing of Squalaci and Djorou! Funny that Djorou does better along Kolschieny but is crap along Squalici!!!!

Jrk

Can someone find an appropriate translation for ‘squeaky bum’ in French for poor old Squalici. Djorou is decent when he concentrates, but his rather frequent lapses in concentration always seem to result in the opposition scoring!

Badaab

While Djourou did a crap job clearing the ball for the Boca equalizer, I’m putting Mannone at just as much fault on that one. He didn’t come for the ball, didn’t shout, and just stood there looking crap (much like a goal West Ham scored against us two years ago with him in goal). I think this speaks to the experience of our ‘keeper.

Ramy

Loved Traore! Definitely best defender in 2nd half. Djourou is not good enough as a 1st choice. There’s been too many errors leading to goals from him. Jenkinson was good defensively. Can cross well too. Wilshere was fouled a LOT. Deserved a penalty. Ramsey was a good sub and took his goal very well. Vela’s dribble that lead to Ramsey’s goal was brilliant. Faded later on, mainly because Arsenal kept attacking from the left side of the pitch, so didn’t have a lot of opportunities. Frimpong showed he is a good back up to Song. Held the ball for too… Read more »

The Grand Old Duke Of Teddyshire

Same old crap with the defence we have all been going on about this for years and bloody years. When will Arsene get it into his fucking stubborn head we cant defend for shit. It fucking winds me up watching this shitty defence time and time again. Also for those that say this is not our back 4 wake up and smell the coffee these are the squad players who will be called upon to take over when someone get injured. They arnt good enough and I am sick and tired of this living within your means bollocks. The place… Read more »

argonaut

Agreed re Cesc and Nasri. That’s the second pre-season game where Nasri has been undeserving of a pay rise, and not worth the money from City that we are giving up by keeping him.

Eboue's Grandpa

Its frustrating isn’t it? The attack has you jizzing your pants before the defence smears it all over your face. I know, its that disgusting. Its not about the personnel but the technique. Wenger’s boys can’t defend against Ol’ Harry’s Ma and we can’t do shit. Lets just sit tight and hope Gervinho’s forehead and RVPs chocolate leg bag more goals than “Squallci” manages to allow …

ArsenalWhinger

All went wrong when Squillachi come on. I don’t beleive Djourou can defend properly when playing on the left side of the centre half pairing, he always looked more comfortable last season when playing on the right of Koscielny. Still not convinced with our midfield shape at times, we lose the ball at the top of the field and suddenly the opposition has loads of room to run into and the back 4 don’t know whether to push up or drop off. We still look vunerable at times, so yeah, not convinced, although it is only pre-season. On the plus… Read more »

Fabolous_fab

“As Arsenal began their defence of the prestigious Emirates Cup” LOL – is it prestigious because its the only cup we ve been able to win lately!
Traore played alright(had forgotten he still an arsenal player)

Redsy

Arsen doesnt know how to teach defence. He inherited Georges defence and if it wasnt for that he would never have won anything.
Same old mistakes year in year out the defenders are probably ok he is just playing a system with poor defensive coaching that makes them look worse as they dont defend as team…… Its the usual bollox of we can outscore you.
well we didnt against newcastle and we wont against anyone else.

Jasonisimo

“George’s Defense”: Lehman, Cole, Campbell, Toure, Lauren.

Oops!

AR

Sol, Lauren, Toure and Cashley had nothing to do with Graham. Likewise the defensive qualities of PV4, Petit and Gilberto. I’d much rather have us play what we do and be entertained even if we lost 5-4 every other week than see us throw on 3 defenders for the last 30 mins to defend a 1-0 lead. It’s a privilege to get to go to the stadium and watch the team play and while it’s been frustrating these last few years, it’s still a million times better than watching any other team in the world. If the prices for tickets… Read more »

Niro

Now this is someone who I’d like to have a pint with! Well said

Chamron

Just afew quick points, Firstly Wenger says it’s not about how many players we sign, but about the quality we sign, and also whether the player adds something to the squad.

So will somebody please tell me what the fuck jenkinson

Jimbobsalamiface

Jenkinson’s amazing… Always crosses when he gets the ball. Loves conceding possession. His crosses always go to someone on the same team too! Hmm.

Chamron

Adds to the squad, and also what quality he has. Wenger is a liar, I thought it was gonna be a busy summer? I know we can’t sign messi, but nobody is asking that, but we certainly don’t want jenkinson, Wenger is a compulsive liar and until the fans realise that and stop turning up to watch that shit he will keep getting away with it. That team is pathetic, simple and plain, and I’m nit wasting 1 hour and 30 minutes of my life every weekend watching that crap, brace yourself guys, channel 5 on a Thursday is round… Read more »

ZachCotner

Then shut up and go support spuds.

NorthernGoon

@Zach – Spot on mate. Et al – Today was a run out for squad players for the most part. Yes we had some first XI there but the rest… Positives – Traore has come back from Juve a MUCH better player. Gervinho looking good still. Set pieces defended well. Negatives – Schillaci shouldn’t play alongside Djourou. Ever. I think he’d do ok with Vermaelen though. Djourou sadly lacking again when it counts. Probably would do better with Vermaelen. Bartley would a better squad player I think. In fact I’d prefer him as backup CB than Dj/Sch. Lastly we don’t… Read more »

Eboue's Grandpa

You know life isn’t too bad. We demand the best because “we” pay the highest ticket prices (am on the couch out here in Kenya though). But consider how much bitchy we’d be if we was like em Spuds who spend on average €60m a year yet can’t make it to Europe. Its not the money spent but how the players we have perform (Hello, Senor Torres!!). So if we hang on to Nasri, he better deliver the goods and win us some shiny. If we pay to watch “Squallci”, Djourou, Vermaelen, Wilshere, Jenkinson… WE BETTER WIN A TROPHY!! We… Read more »

kas

I only caught the 2nd half. Someone mentioned when we lost the ball high up Boca had a lot of space in midfield. I totally agree. Maybe Song and Frimpong should sit back and allow the attacking midfielders do their thing. Speaking of which, is Nasri trying to force through a transfer playing like that. That’s not last season’s Nasri! If he does leave may he play like today the rest of his career! What can I say, I hold on to grudges.

Chezza

Is there any reason that Chamakh is preferred to Vela as our backup striker? At all?

JamesM

Cos Vela’s shite.

zachisatwat

maybe because vela isn’t a striker ?

zachisatwat

zach cotner fuck off about go and support spuds etc chamron may well be overreacting but some points he makes are right people have had enough where is this defender he is supposed to be signing? squillacci is shit everyone knows it except wenger djorou is capable as back up to tv and kozzer we need 3 new signings and still nothing happens ? afobe and bartley sat on the bench again yet he brings the clowns on again eboue ffs wasn’t he ment to join galatasary or is it bullshit paper talk ? now we hear spuds are signing… Read more »

Jasonisimo

From what I saw, Bacary Sagna has a guaranteed space at RB. Yes, Jenkinson can defend, but his passing was not good enough. I think he was far too casual, from the 20 minutes or so I saw of the first half. Turning to the goals conceded… First, wasn’t it Ramsey who was caught in possession and gave the ball away in midfield leading up to goal No. 1? How did Squillaci figure into that to be deserving of the disparagement while Ramsey is in for none of it? Second, Djourou was not good enough in the lead up to… Read more »

zachisatwat

it was squillacci im sure of it lol even if it wasn’t him why was he out of position???

zachisatwat

on letting in two second-half goals…
You never want to concede goals, but overall I do not give too much importance to that. What is important for us it to find a collective rhythm. When we could we managed to play at a good pace for 60 minutes, after it was much more difficult. It was expected, we came back from a training camp in Germany with heavy work and I knew that the second half would be much more difficult.

what a smackhead

The BearMan

Arsenal looks like a team fighting for 10th place in the Premier League.

The first order of business is a defensive coach. Sending Squallaci on loan in Turkey, so when he messes up the fans will lunch him. Arsenal needs two defenders and one must be Chris Samba.

Should Arsene fail to take action to strengthen this squad, he and the Arsenal board will pay dearly!

The BearMan

Get the videos out to show the lads the mistakes they are making in the defense. I really believe they do not know what they are doing wrong.

tixka

missed the match today… but from what i’m reading above, not worth watching the replay. hopefully tmw’s better…

Gnasher

Squillachi out!

A solid experienced competitive central defender (preferably with EPL experience) needed now.

Highbury_Squirrel

Um, have I missed something? So much reaction to a friendly. Just a friendly.
I was there, soaking up the sun and the beer. It was one of those days, chilled on the pitch, chilled off it. You can’t read anything into it. People are so keen to get the knives out. Just chill for a bit, the season hasnt even started yet.

Niro

Don’t you know, this may be a friendly to you, but to the gooner universe, this match is a tell-tale affair of how the season goes. Since we tied today we’ll probably finish 4th in the epl, maybe 3rd, possibly a semifinals in the fa cup, and quarter final birth in the champs league. good thing we didn’t lose, because that would have meant relegation, shame we didn’t win though, cause that would have meant a quadruple plus the fifa world cup too, and perhaps the womens world cup, but i’m afraid abby wambach and hope solo might put up… Read more »

Stephen

Were made because the exact sane mistakes that cost us last tear are what showed up today. No improvement in the most needed area.

Chamron

@ zac First of all there’s no need to swear bro, I’m merely stating an opinion. One that you don’t have to agree with hence why it is called an opinion. Secondly some of the things I said were fact and not opinion, Arsene Wenger said it was going to be a busy summer, he also said he was going to add “quality” to the squad rather than quantity. So far he’s managed a 19 year old that barely played 10 games for a championship side that didn’t do too well last season, and gervinho who as far as I’m… Read more »

James

Can you believe Wenger gave Nasri the Captain’s armband? What’s that, a pathetic last attempt at getting him to stay. What a joke this manager is, a complete fucking embarrassment.

jgunz

its sad to see the same points/problems occuring season after season, on a brighter note this defensive lapse will force us to buy a least one of the two central defenders we need.
jagielka for mental strength and chris samba for brute strength.
……can you see stoke,blackburn,bolton,or wolve elbowing samba and not reciving some punishment for that action.

Badaab

My thoughts on today’s match: First half… great, free-flowing pace to the match. We held possession pretty well, and pressured down the flanks nicely. Second half… same old, same old. No communication between the CBs and ‘keeper, lots of dawdling on the ball instead of passing forward. Looked like four Denilsons on the pitch with all the sideways and back passing we had. Players: Man of the Match: Jack Wilshire. It might have only been pre-season, but were Boca Juniors trying to foul him off the ball! He was massive in the middle for us. We really missed him in… Read more »

Badaab

Oh… and I loved seeing Martin Atkinson waving away a clear penalty (or PELANTY according to the commentator) for us already. Who is officiating tomorrow? Fat Ass Phil Fucking Dowd?
We should have invited Bussaca to officiate for the Emirates Cup, and instead of leading him to the dressing room, lead him to a small closet filled with a tiger. And perhaps fire. Maybe we can lure John Terry in there as well when Chelsea come to play us next. Call it the “VIP Dressing Chamber” or something.

Thorough

Number one problem Arsenal has but will not acknowledge – some of our players are so shite no other team wanna take them off us. If Djorou (no matter the context i.e playing with Kos, Verm., or Squil) who is utter shite, Squil, Bendtner n Almunia leave us where can they fit in in the world of football? Cant see anywhere. So if you can move Djorou n Squillaci on, how do u create a space for Samba n Cahill? I love Samba, he is class, pure n simple, and he has the desire to play for us. And he… Read more »

Graham

Idiot