Wenger eager to avoid Bradford penalty drama

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Arsene Wenger has warned his squad that they face a tough test against Bradford City with Phil Parkinson’s side on a good run in League Two.

The Gunners are set to field a strong line-up in this evening’s League Cup quarter-final clash at Valley Parade with the boss particularly wary of the game going to penalties after learning the Bantams have won eight consecutive cup shootouts in just three years.

“We have to win the game in normal time. They have gained confidence in these types of competitions and confidence plays a big part in that. Hopefully we won’t need penalties,” Wenger said.

“Bradford are a force in their league, they are a team who play very good football and very efficient as well. We take them very seriously. They are very efficient at set pieces, so we will have to be very strong on that.”

Wenger knows all too well what it’s like to struggle against Bradford having failed to beat them in his previous two visits in the Premier League 12 years ago.

“Valley Parade was a difficult place to go to when we played there in the Premier League,” he continued.

“It is a passionate place with a very special atmosphere as well. That’s what you will get again in this match.

“I believe when you go to places like this, you need to tell your players that it will be as difficult as a Premier League game, and it will be.

“Therefore you want to prepare yourself. If you don’t do your mental work before the game, you have no chance and that is where our job lies.”

After going 4-0 down at Reading only to win 7-5 Arsenal fans are all too aware that anything can happen in this competition…and that includes being taken to 120 minutes and penalties by comparative minnows.

While Bradford certainly have an enviable record from 12-yards, our own performance hasn’t been too shabby since an horrific six months in the 1999/2000 season when we lost in the League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Cup final thanks to missed spot kicks.

Arsenal penalty record under Arsene Wenger

Beat Port Vale FA Cup 97/98

Beat West Ham FA Cup 97/98

Lost Middlesbrough League Cup 99/00

Lost Leicester FA Cup 99/00

Lost Galatasaray UEFA Cup 99/00

Beat Rotherham League Cup 03/04

Beat Sheffield United FA Cup 04/05

Beat Man Utd FA Cup Final 04/05

Beat Doncaster League Cup 05/06

Beat Roma Champions League 08/09

(Cheers to the memory of @LittleDutchVA for verifying penalty stats)

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Holdin Mygroin
Holdin Mygroin

Cheers !

Donteatthecrabdip
Donteatthecrabdip

Did Jack going head to head with Olsson remind anyone of Cesc v. Sheringham a few years back?

Tottenhams reckoning
Tottenhams reckoning

Or when cesc tacked a stoke city player, I can’t remember who, and then he started mouthing to the lord of orcs! I thought that was amazing!

Ray!
Ray!

I don’t think my heart can take penalties.
Just win in the 90 please. Get behind the boys, COYG!

Arsenal_SouthAfrica
Arsenal_SouthAfrica

C.O.Y.G!!!!

Dr Baptiste
Dr Baptiste

Playing Football Manager 2013 last night and Arsenal lost 3-0 to Watford in the COC (I wasn’t manager of Arsenal though). I hope it’s a sign that we are going to batter Bradford as they are a totally different team….

Santi's Sack
Santi's Sack

I wouldn’t count on it. It only works if you’re David Moyes.

Holdin Mygroin
Holdin Mygroin

Your reasoning is just absolutely mind-boggling. you should be a philosopher dude.

L

football manager 2013? If u play any manager game u should play fifa manager 2013 instead… Btw computer games are for monkeys

Dr Baptiste
Dr Baptiste

FIFA’s manager mode is a poor man’s Football Manager. FIFA should be used as a football simulator only and never as a football management simulator

L

i have no idea, computer games are for fat virgins :=) looks like the simulator is better then the football manager:s 🙂

Frrrrred
Frrrrred

Do we even have good penalty takers in our second string?. Yes Arsene no penalties, win game in the normal time and make us a happy lot.
Go all out in the first half, get a two goal lead then second half strategise on how to keep hold of the lead while knicking a few chances for the 4-0 victory. I see eisfeld kicking arse.

Insight
Insight

If Giroud is out, who will be our striker? That’s always my question.

THEREISBEARCUM
THEREISBEARCUM

Obviously it’ll be Chamakh and Gervinho (Or Jerveeno, as they call him on Fox Sports).

Might as well get some use out of the before they fuck off to Africa for three months or however long that shit takes.

Frrrrred
Frrrrred

I like how you say “that shit”………I would have gone for “CAN” but maybe that’s just me. Arrogant english men!

89 Anfield..... It's up for grabs now
89 Anfield..... It's up for grabs now

I think he’s a seppo! But yeah don’t disrespect the cup of African nations for countries from Africa on the continent of Africa!!!

Santi's Sack
Santi's Sack

I’m with THEREISBEARCUM on this one. It’s not because it’s African. It’s because it’s international football and it fucks with our season.

Brian Mendoza
Brian Mendoza

Poldi? The Gerv (lol)? A Flock Of Seagulls? Or perhaps Akpom?

There are options I’d think.

wengers furrowed brow
wengers furrowed brow

yours truly…Chamakh!!!

Arxavin
Arxavin

Hope Poldi gets a shot up top

ARSENAL
ARSENAL

Poldi was really poor up top for us at the beginning

TeeCee
TeeCee

Or Gervinho gets a boot up the bottom.

Insight
Insight

#rhetorical

(but thanks for answering anyway, fellow Gooners!)

Dr Baptiste
Dr Baptiste

Don’t bring your hashtags down here. You’ll upset Frog with your youthful writing 😉

Highbury
Highbury

“Wenger knows all too well what it’s like to struggle against Bradford having failed to beat the Midlands outfit in his previous two visits in the Premier League 12 years ago.”

Lol, I live in the Midlands and Bradford is quite a bit further north!!! :p

TeeCee
TeeCee

Oh dear. Is it in “The North” then?
Heere be Dragonnes….

arseblog
Admin

Winter is coming

vin_unleaded

There be dragons in the Midlands as well – and anywhere outside of the M25 for that matter!

vin_unleaded

And Orcs.

Festa
Festa

I would go with a front three of:

Rosicky – Podolski – Oxlade

ARSENAL
ARSENAL

I would go with a front 3 of Gnabry-Chamakh-Gervinho

rossi88
rossi88

Akpom mate………..or that moroccan chap thats on 45 000 a week, or that little russian on 100 000+ a week or geezer with a massive forehead from Ivory coast on 55 000 a week……i suppose my point is akpom whos probably on 2 000 a week could do just a good job with a 1% of the weekly wages of what these 3 get combined. Hire me Gazidis, il sort this shit out

THEREISBEARCUM
THEREISBEARCUM

I no longer think it’s funny that you think you know anything about how much these people are getting paid – or that you know enough about the club’s financial situation for what you think you DO know to have any possible import.

In short: STFU NOOB.

Midfield Corporal
Midfield Corporal

I think the point here is regardless of how accurate Rossi88 is with his salary estimates, Akpom could do no worse than Chamakh as Chamakh does sweet FA. I feel for AA, he’s obviously very talented and still produces match winning moments amidst the mediocrity now. I think one of Arsenes biggest mistakes was never playing him more centrally behind a striker. He returned to training pre season looking slimmer but still gets frozen out, I don’t understand why we didn’t let him go on a free and free up his wages if we weren’t going to play him.

Dr Baptiste
Dr Baptiste

Because Arshavin can refuse to go. While the idea of just releasing players is nice, they do have contracts so can turn down our option of a free transfer. I’m pretty sure I read something that stated we offered Chamakh and Arshavin the chance to just leave in the summer for free to find new clubs but as they are still here I’m guessing they said no….

Midfield Corporal
Midfield Corporal

Cheers Doc 🙂

Big Dave
Big Dave

I hate these matches where the opposing side doesn’t really have anything to lose. There’s too much pressure on the better team and the commentators and media love it. In a way, so they should really because we would love it if we saw Sp*urs lose to a league 2 side. But, at the moment where we are so fragile particularly against more ‘bullying’ sides, I feel like this might be a tough match. If I was reading from the Football Manager’s Book Of Cliches I would say, “keep it simple” and “play your game”.

Midfield Corporal
Midfield Corporal

I feel we are ‘mentally strong’- check, have a ‘good spirit’ – check, and hope we don’t ‘play with the handbrake on’ – bingo, full house!!!

Big Dave
Big Dave

Yea yea yea… “Let the ball do the work”… that made no sense when I was playing 5-a-side at 8 years old and still makes absolutely no sense whatsoever.

Arxavin
Arxavin

Front 3 should be:

Arshavin Poldi Ox/Gnabry

Swiftarf
Swiftarf

Looking forward to this one… Been a Gooner since the Graham years (indeed, I briefly lived above The Gunners on Blackstock Rd) but since leaving London I’ve lived in Bradford for a few years now… And I’ve adopted the Bantams wholeheartedly… £200 for a season ticket? Why not!
The buzz around the city for the visit of the Arsenal has been a real boost for the whole townand the atmosphere inside VP tonight is going to be pretty special. I’ll be in with the home fans supporting the underdogs but ultimately, will be a winner either way… City have already put Notts County, Watford and Wigan out – all in higher leagues and all in their own back-yards, so Arsenal musn’t take Bradford for granted. It’s been a great season for the Claret and Amber so far and the tie tonight is a just reward for the effort the team have demonstrated so far. After 10 years of decline things are finally looking up!
For those going tonight, listen out for our new anthem as the teams take the field… and try not to laugh too much…

Enjoy the game – and bring some gloves… It’s going to be fucking freezing!

COYG/COYB!

Midfield Corporal
Midfield Corporal

You live in Bradford Swiftharf?? Were you a low level gangland villain who grassed up Mr Big and consequently put in a witness protection program in a northern backwater for your safety? ……or was it so your wife could be nearer her mother?

Swiftarf
Swiftarf

It was my wife could be nearer her sister… who is also her mother…

xian

i cant stand that dog tshirt advert. makes me feel a bit nauseous

MERTESCIELNY
MERTESCIELNY

This cup is ours to lose now and I have a feeling that unlike 2004, 2007 and 2011 we will win it this time. Starts tonight with tricky away test. COYG.

Swiftarf
Swiftarf

Just in case anyone is interested in the view from the other side of the fence…

http://widthofapost.com/

Midfield Corporal
Midfield Corporal

I recreating read, one thing that annoys me though is comments like ‘will they fancy it on a cold wet December night in Bradford’. Do northernerd think its like fucking Barbados in London at the moment? Its only a150 miles north. anyway Arshavins from Russia, podolski Germany/Poland, Rosicky Chech republic, Szchezny Poland, these places have winters as bad if not worse than Bradford. If they’d just said, ‘they probably won’t fancy coming to Bradford’, I’d have no argument.

Swiftarf
Swiftarf

Yeah, it’s a bit of a cliche… but as long as everyone remembers that it’s a game of two halves then no-one will be sick as a parrot.

However, a bitter wind whistles round VP and without the extra couple of degrees warmth provided by a city full of cheery cockneys with their braziers full of roasting chestnuts then the Arse might well be advised to pack their thermals…

Midfield Corporal
Midfield Corporal

The Bradford lads will be wearing their Long Johns, we’ll have our Onesies on. 🙂

Santi's Sack
Santi's Sack

Nah, we’ll be going commando. That’ll freak em out.

North Bank Gooner
North Bank Gooner

that David Season was one hell of a player…………. 😉

jeff wright
jeff wright

Trust Wenger to be negative! Come on now , penalty shootouts are usually what make the about this Mickey Mouse Cup tournament worth watching .

There is not much fun in watching Prem sides stroll to an easy win over lower class ones.

Unless we go 4-0 down against one that is and end up winning 7-5 .

Nick
Nick

call me crazy, but don’t we always want to win in regular time? When the fuck do we or anyone ever say “hey, lets make it interesting and try to get to a penalty situation!”

I would love to see Akpom given a shot up front alongside Podolski. Sadly the lizard with the dead animal on his head will likely get the start. If he plays like he did against Reading I’m all for it. If he plays like he has in every other game the past 18 months then I’ll pass.

Is Theo still out? Anyone but the forehead!!!! When he goes to the ACON can we just ask him not to come back?

ringorena
ringorena

cccrrrrrrraaaaaazzzyyyyyyyyyyyyy-yy-y-yyy

duh.

Wenger
Wenger

Funny how Arsene is building this up to be a challenge.

Imagine, in a boxing analogy, Bruce Buffer reading this out:

In the Red Corner, fighting out of the uhhh, SOMEWHERE, a league two side, heavily underfunded, with modest training facilities and no star players to name!
The underdogs, BRADFORD!

In the BLUE CORNER, fighting out of North London, theeeeeeeeeee… ARSENAL! With world class training facilities and stadium. A healthy bank balance, and many enviable stars… INCLUDING, Jack WILSHERE, Santiago Cazorla GonZALEZ! The undisputed heavy… okay I’m getting carried away…

There is just no way that we can lose to a team like this, and the players would do themselves a favour if they treat this as a mismatch. If we don’t hit 6 – 0 from half time we in a crisis.

rossi88
rossi88

@ thereisbearcum, who said its funny. My ‘assumption’ is based on lots of different articles publicised around the times we brought these players my guess is they are actually on more. chamack was a free transer, we gave arshavin 100k plus bcos at the time he was kinda a big deal plus barca were interested and gervinho…..well, he was regarded as ligue 1 top player behind hazard. So why they might not be to the penny, they aint a bad shout, you mug. So my point of Akpom, being on a fraction of what they earn, against what they bring to the team, might as well start. He cant do any worse, and at the same time were blooding young, british(sort of) talent.
Now sit down, read, and think before you type shite.

argonaut
argonaut

We want to see battered bantams on the menu tonight. No messing about with penalties.

Enormous Dave
Enormous Dave

We will be fine no worries here !!!

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Enormous Proxy Dave
Enormous Proxy Dave

We will be victorious end of story !!!

Dial Square
Dial Square

really!!!!!

Crevzyyy
Crevzyyy

If Eisfeld plays, i’m happy.

CarlJenks
CarlJenks

Bring on the Eis man

ringorena
ringorena

eeeiiissmann want to playyyy..!

Hefty Dave
Hefty Dave

Love you blogs

Bashmachkinfile
Bashmachkinfile

“Hopefully we won’t need penalties,” Wenger said.

Ah, but you did, you did… and you didn’t!