Match Report: West Brom 2-3 Arsenal – Happy St Totteringham’s Day

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Arsenal secured third place in the Premier League with a typically nerve-jangling performance at the Hawthorns. Up early through Yossi Benayoun, the Gunners were caught by two strikes in quick succession by the home side, before rescuing the three points with an Andre Santos strike and a scrappy second half winner from Laurent Koscielny. Despite the fact that Spurs beat Fulham, the 70 point total secured by Arsene Wenger’s men means we’ll be enjoying automatic qualification for the Champions League next term.

________

I apologise in advance, for what you’re about to read, I start with the best of intentions, but it descends quickly into a farce. My brain has been absolutely frazzled by the highs and lows of this season. Combine that with having to watch the action on technology which would have shamed the Victorians and a bout of the most intense pre-match nerves I’ve experienced in years and all I could think about while typing was whether I might throw up at any moment. Anyway…

I suppose we should start with team news. Arsene sprung a surprise handing Francis Coquelin a starting berth in place of Aaron Ramsey in the centre of the park and selecting Carl Jenkinson in Bacary Sagna’s right-back slot.

We couldn’t have made a better start. As news filtered in from White Hart Lane that Emmanuel Adebayor had given Spurs the lead, Yossi Benayoun charged down the West Brom goalkeeper Marton Fulop after the ball had spilled free from a Van Persie dribble, nicked the ball off his toes and walked the ball into the back of the net. We wanted an early goal and we got it. Another very important contribution from the on loan Israeli.

It was a scrappy fare, but we didn’t look unduly fazed by the pressure of defending a lead. Of course, you never can underestimate the cuntishness of the officials.

After a James Morrison through ball found Shane Long, the linesman decided that the West Brom striker, despite being two yards offside, should be allowed to waltz through on goal and slide the ball past Szczesny. It was total bollocks. It should never have stood and Arsene went ballistic.

Three minutes later, and apparently still shell-shocked from the blow of conceding an equaliser, Graham Dorrans scored again for West Brom. To be honest my stream was so shit I could barely see it. But it looked as though another ball was fed between the centrebacks and the striker after controlling it with his head, hit it early to beat our Pole in goal. Behind again.

On 18 minutes the busy Benayoun fired over on the volley, two minutes later Everton took the lead against Newcastle United. Gervinho was finding plenty of space on the right hand side with Jenkinson happy to overlap with the Ivorian. That being said, the home side continued to defend stoutly whenever we approached their box. Benayoun was denied again, this time by a heroic block.

On 26 minutes Van Persie was awarded a free-kick on the very edge of the box after a great turn. Unfortunately, his effort from the set piece went straight into the wall. Everton in the meantime, doubled their lead over Newcastle.

Just before the half-hour mark, Andre Santos intercepted the ball in the final third, nipped around a couple of defenders and arrowed a low left foot drive at the near post. The keeper should probably have parried the ball around the post but thankfully it nestled in the back of the net. 2-2. After the emotional turmoil of last week’s rollercoaster ride with Norwich, this was another game intent on wrecking the nerves of Gooners across the world.

Van Persie picked up a booking for a late challenge, West Brom won a series of corners, but trying to guess who would score next was a tough call. Just as the half-time whistle was about to blow, Gervinho made good headway down the right, cut in and shot low. It looked from certain angles as if it had gone in, but actually rippled the side netting.

Knowing we needed a win to secure third, Wenger sent on Theo Walcott for the second half with Tomas Rosicky the man sacrificed. The England man took a position on the left, with Gervinho remaining on the right.

Five minutes into the second half, and the Baggies were dealt a blow when the influential James Morrison was forced off with an injury. While the home side were down to ten men, Andre Santos flashed a terrific swerving effort just wide.

A contentious corner earned by van Persie allowed the Dutchman a chance to swing the ball into the box. It landed straight in the hands of Fulop who ridiculously back punched the ball towards his only line. Laurent Koscielny was on hand to volley the ball home from close quarters and it was 3-2 and we were back in third.

West Brom promptly upped the pressure and seemed to win about 25 corners in a row. Each time the ball seemed to bounce around in the box with no Arsenal player particularly eager to hoof it clear. At White Hart Lane Spurs scored their second against Fulham to up ante.

Gervinho was removed for Gibbs, Keith Andrews had a great shot parried by Szczesny, a Song effort was deflected for a corner. It was frantic stuff.

With 20 minutes left in his last game as West Brom boss, Roy Hodgson threw on nippy Nigerian striker Peter Odemwingie. Van Persie was threaded through by Benayoun, but was forced too far wide and couldn’t make the most of a half chance. Aaron Ramsey came on for Andre Santos, so too did Paul Scharner for the hosts. At this point I’m not really sure what our fucking formation was.

10 minutes to go. More West Brom pressure, more nervous defending.

5 minutes to go. I can’t watch.

4 minutes to go. I must watch.

3 minutes to go.

2 minutes to go.

1 minute to go.

Arrrrrgggghhh 5 minutes of extra-time.

Van Persie goes through. He fires over. Fucking hell.

Gibbs makes an unbelievable last gasp stop.

3 minutes of extra-time left.

2 minutes of extra-time left.

Full-time at Spurs and Redknapp’s mugs have won.

1 minute to go.

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS. Third place secured!

St. Totteringham’s day!

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Good Omens

Still my beating heart. So emotional. Yes !

gunner16

kieran gibbs’ block. he’s my hero

gunner16

HAPPY ST. TOTTERNIGHAM’S DAY.

adi

Gibbs was motm for me. At least 4-5 headers out in the last 2 mins.
Oh, and thank you fulop!!

iSayed

Morton Fulop HAS TO BE an Arsenal fan! THANK YOU SIR!!

Attasmani

Man of the match was obviously Fulop. He must be a glowing supporter of the mighty Arsenal 😀

Goonerhaea

Fulop has to be at most an Arsenal fan… at least a Sp*ds hater!

The Red and White Observer

I was at the Emirates Screening today and 1200 fans went ballistic when the final whistle went. But prior to that Gibbs tackle was the one that got us in the CL. Thanks Gibbs. This is the last of my submission for this season. Its been a roller-coaster of emotions. My heart has skipped many a beat, and I’ve had some sleepless nights…. but we crossed that line. Gervinho, Song, TV5 and all the Arsenal players not selected for Euro 12 and The Olympics… please enjoy your vacation. You deserve it. Also thanks Yossi for your contribution, and massive love… Read more »

jeff

Fucking tackle of the season by Gibbs!

ggggggoooooooonnnnnnneerrrrr

im happy that we finished 3rd, but also sad that im happy that we finished 3rd, if you get what im saying, well hopefully next season will be our year, Come On You Gooners, AFC till i die.

P.S. MIND THE GAP SP*RS

St. Totteringham's day

I took my time, but I have arrived

Goonerhaea

It took till the end of the season for some luck to fall our way. Moral: You make your own luck. Well done, Boys.

We’ve sang. We’ve screamed. We’ve moaned. We’ve whinged.
We’ve cursed. We’ve asked. We’ve begged. We’ve prayed.
And that was just today, not to mention the season!
Oh to be a Gunner, Do I need a reason?!!!

COYG

Bobby Pires

YYYYYYYYEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FUCK YOU SP*RS HAHAHAHAHAHA

William Hancox

FUCKING YEAH!

Oleg Luzhny

What a game, what a result, what a season!

Mooro

….and relax.

Now then, VDV, WHL Boy, Inarrysjeep, Lee Morgan and all you other spud mugs that nicked a computer when you went looting, and got your social worker to help you work it, so you could give it the large one on our site….

Have a lovely St Tott’s Day now won’t ya boys.

Maybe next year eh? Pfft, yeah, like fuck.

Kops

Fucking hilarious mate!

Jamie

Gibbs.

Last ditch tackle = Awesome.

Good Omens

Aye, I’d already sold my soul by the point..my finger nails were stubs – the lad showed everything we were praying for, pure desire. Kudos Keiran son, kudos.

Arsenal4Life

”Gibbs.

Last ditch tackle = Awesome.”

Sorry, awesome ? My heart stopped, started beating just so I could scream : YEEEEEES KEIRAAAAN and than stopped again. 😀
ARSENAL4LIFE

Comedian

Loved the way we teased spurs throughout this month.
Everton , mancity finish above their neighbours we dont let that happen at Arsenal.

Comedian

now i want Bayern to win the champions league cant see chelshit winning. Bayern bayern go on you munchens.
And spurs get knock out in their qualifying tie.

Innovstar

The Gap has got much bigger !!! I love you Gunners.

John

For me that game encapsulated this entire season. Initially thinking the club was dead and buried, with them coming back strongly to clinch the win =]
Mental strength and elevated blood pressures anyone?

liz2

I LOVE THE ARSENAL!!!!
and many thanks to Pat Rice, may your retirement be much less stressful than this season

munya

not saying a lot really is it.

vvv

Mr. Fulop is the noblest man in all of England.

sacklad

its about time we find some fortune off of another teams goalkeeping howlers.

AR

Fulop is an ex-Spud!!! How lovely! One of their own decides to give us a helping hand, it must really suck to have anything to do with them!

Gandalf

Im such a happy gay today, Santos you beauty!

Arsenal4Life

When he scored and blogs wrote on liveblog : ANDRE MOTHERFUCKING SANTOS I literally fell of my chair laughing 😀 What a tense game !
ARSENAL4LIFE

ryanbr1

fuck me!!!!!

ryanbr1

fuck me!!!!

George

I nearly had a heart attack when WBA got that free kick just outside the box, thought it was a pen!

Arsenal > Spurs

Yeah what was it with that idiot typing “it’s over” in the comments? IT WAS JUST A FK!

sacklad

when they went 2-1 up I feared the worst. Thank heavens for that, next season is looking a whole lot better now. Champions league, and a more than reasonable chance at retaining robin. Yes please.

Devil

Fuck everything else we’re there…we held on …we held on.. we held on.. fuck fuck fuck

AR

Kieran Gibbs you beauty!!!!! What a block that was! It’s been a very poor season even by our inconsistent standards and yet we finish 3rd and the Spuds still can’t finish above us! Fantastic!

Yossi did it for us in 2006 by helping West Ham beat the Spuds on the last day, this time he’s had an even more direct impact! We are The Arsenal!! 😀

Devil

Oh and Golden boot for RvP..Fuck off everythingelse..

Red and White Stripey Socks

What a day won’t go down as a great season but fuck yeah feels good to sit on top the spuds yet again. Well done city Fergie must have thought that was in the bag! Thank you Arsenal. Third is a great finish can’t wait for next year now!

goonerforlife

and fucking sp*rs fans thought they were actually gonna finish above us!!! hah

they cant even finish above their ass!!!!

John

On a side note: where they people who said we couldn’t without Arteta at?! It seems Le Coq filled the hole admirably.
*Christ that seems a bit too much.

John

My nerves are so frazzled, I literally cannot write properly. Apologies to all…

TomC

Let me be the first to say that whatever cunt was calling himself @DB10 on the Live Blog post should be fucking ashamed of him/herself. Fuck off @DB10 you’re likea turd in a swimming pool. Fucking disloyal disgrace. Most important match in ages and you use it as a platform for your pathetic anti-AW politics.

i am proud of what we’ve done this season. Very proud. Of the players, of pat Rice and of Arsene. Bring on next season when we will do even better and hopefully without AW sniping, shit-weasels like @DB10.

MJay

Totally Unbelievable!! COYG!!

Mind the Fucking Gap you Spudsy Wankers!!!!!

fulop is god

Loved the way Arsene kept clutchinging Pat Rice, Bouldy’s not half as cuddly. Wish I’d had a Pat to hand. Santos motm?

garyfootscrayaustralia

don’t put it past the marketing department to come up with Pat Rice teddy bears….anything to get people to buy more AFC related products, no matter how tenuous….

seb

gibbs, jesus christ… my hear was in my mouth

ggggggoooooooonnnnnnneerrrrr

i could almost taste my hearing in my mouth
hahahahahahah
IM JUST SO FUCKING HAPPY

Muse

I’m going to buy an arsenal shirt with Marton Fulop’s name on it!!

Arsenal4Life

I guess you’ll be able to buy his Arsenal kit when new kits go on sale because somebody needs to fill the Almunia role, and Arsene today certainly saw potential… 😀
ARSENAL4LIFE

vlado

holy crap… I’m to old for this shit 🙂

Sim Yew Teck

So Arsenal worst team in 50 years finished ahead of Sp*rs best team in 50 years. Happy St Totteringham’s Day!

CAGooner

We were just giving the Spuds a head start–like you’d do in a race against a slow kid–before we made up the gap and passed them.

xian

the paint was peeling off in my living room just then never been so on edge during a football game in my life. well done boys. gibbs is a hero. koscielny deserved the goal as the hardest working player in the side this season. andre dos santos is great gay. pat rice- god bless you you utter legend. I love Wenger – but he’s got a hell of a job to do over the summer. Happy St Totteringhams day to you arseblog news, and to all gooners.

wetdreams

HAHA to all the sp*rs cunts who were going all “We’re the best team in London”. Worst Arsenal start in 50 years and they still end up behind us..

Redsy

Sign up Yossi he put in an amazing shift today again. Love the guy.
Gibbs awsome tackle and delighted for KOS with the goal that ensured the usual ST Totts day celebrations.

Wouldnt like to go through that roller coaster of emotions every season though.

Goonerific

Yeah his work rate was fantastic he was everywhere!

fulop is god

Have to say Arsene really sorted it out today tactically and with the substitutions, hopefully shuts some people up.

wetdreams

And please, no more of this crap ever. Why do we always have to make things more nail-biting than a thriller movie.

LA Gooner

Way to go Arsenal!! looking forward to see much improved and strong Arsenal for the next season!!

Fatcunt

All I have to say is………benayoun, please stay. I absolutey lfucking love him, hoping for a dench next season.

Salute you arseblog for being with us through the season.

Jack Jumblies

Nervy game, but want to also give props to Wenger for all the smart substitutions that came at the right times. Meanwhile, superfan Piers Morgan was having a hissyfit that Ox was on the bench.

Arsene Knows, you blowhard.

SUPERSPURCUNT

Just one point above Spurs but attitude like winning the champions league, LOL.

fulop is god

attitude like being IN the champion’s league, you’re a Bayern fan for a week!

Midfield Corporal

Ha ha ha, what sort of nob goes on to his arch rivals forum to post something after his team have just lost out to them? A Tottingham nob, that’s who.

Happy St Totts day Lee Morgan, looks like the 5-2 spanking was the game that really killed you.

Happy St T

Fatcunt

A fan from rotten-egg coldfucks, that’s who.

Old man grape

hahahahahhahahha! had to put yourself through it and go to a arsenal site.. lol
spuds = self haters

MIND THE GAP

Too Drunk To Be Offside

Hahahahaha Blow a 10 point lead over Arsenal, Finish Behind Arsenal, Aren’t Even Guaranteed Champions League Football Next Season……..and attitude like “the best team in London”. I know what u r thinking, we will show you next year………well sorry to break it to you but your best team in 50 years finished lower than our worst team in 50 years…………next season you will be back where you belong………thank you stars that AVP did what he did to Chelsea, or you wudn’t even be 4th, Hahahahahaha. What a Joke you are……….enjoy ur moment………even if u do make the qualyfying, you won’t… Read more »

TomC

Sign up Yossi? Yes please!! Get pen and paper connected this week I say

MJB

Just got back from 3 weeks in South East asia. Very jet lagged but what a ‘welcome home’ present! Yeh!
Fuck you spuds, happy totteringhams day everyone!

🙂

MJB

PS
I think next seasons strip is awful.

Mos

So that’s why you were in S.E Asia for three weeks!

cybergooner

hey! time for wilshere to call in his bet.

Crispy

That’s about as stressful as it gets. My stream was shocking and lagging behind the comments on the live blog. So when comments were saying ‘oh fuck’ , ‘oh shit’ , I didn’t have clue what was going on. I’m not a violent person ( last had a pasting when I was 11 and put me off for life) but I could have throttled some of you.
Anyway heart rate returning to normal and glad this shite season is over to be honest.
Much luv.

Eric Irish gunner

Fulops a gunner thank fuck for that I was stressed out,fuck you spurs haha

Rad Carrot

I´m on holiday with a shit internet connection. It´s costing me 4 quid just to say, I do not care how we got there. We just fucking took third place. FUCK YES. Well done lads.

Season over. I can relax now! Happy St Totteringham´s Day, everyone!

GunnerFCm

An open letter to Tottenham Hotspur supporters: Dear friends at Tottenham Hotspur FC, I know we have had our differences in the past, and it is rare we see eye to eye, but I must say, you have done us a great service, and I, for one, recognize it as above and beyond even the gentleman’s code. Whilst viscous rumors swirled in the media about our esteemed manager’s myopic nature, you kindly took it upon yourselves to issue a warning, loudly and en masse. This was most kind of you, and true to our nature, with every courtesy we tried… Read more »

mbunski goonerlast

blog, love the last 3 lines… happy st totteringham’s day!

Gordo

So our worst team of mr wenger’s reign is still miles ahead of sp*rs. Hahahaha!
‘arry who?

Norwad

Don’t think Nasri got to lift the trophy. Haha.

Mclockender

Come on chelski send 5pu2s into the europa league lol lol lol

Old man grape

eh?
the spuds can fuck their season up for themselves.. not interested in chelsea winning it before us,, the chavy scummy cunts that they are.

Nikki

I don’t have the luxury to watch the match today, not even streaming because my stream is so bad i give up and stay tune on Arseblog live. And yeah, because of his narative i also get the same feeling of nervousness and huge happiness when the match end. Thank you Arseblog for your service and Happy St. Totteringham day to all the Arsenal fans.