Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Report: Arsenal 1-0 Doncaster (inc. goal)

Arsenal secured safe passage to the fourth round of the Carabao Cup with a 1-0 victory over Doncaster Rovers at the Emirates.

Theo Walcott, assisted by Alexis, gave the Gunners the lead on 25 minutes in a half of home side domination. The visitors were more of an attacking threat after the break but couldn’t find an equaliser despite several late chances.

First half

To say the Gunners mounted an onslaught in the early stages doesn’t really do justice to the home side’s domination. After a sighter from the visitors inside the opening 60 seconds, calmly dealt with by Ospina, Wenger’s mix-and-match XI laid siege to the Doncaster goal.

Inside three minutes Walcott was denied at close quarters by keeper Lawlor, Giroud had a stonewall penalty claim turned down and Alexis tried a cheeky chip that fell just wide.

With Wilshere the metronome in the centre of the park, the chances kept coming. Giroud struck the bar with an acrobatic volley from a delicate dinked pass by the England international and headed over an Elneny cross.

Next Alexis fired a free-kick from 30-yards that needed stopping before several teasing crosses tickled along the six-yard box from Maitland-Niles’ left flank.

Finally, on 23 minutes, the Gunners took the lead. Alexis picking the ball up deep in midfield, looked up and delivered a delightful ball over the top for Walcott who controlled neatly and clipped the ball over the keeper. (1-0)

Arsenal took their foot off the gas after the opener and aside from the odd jinking run by Alexis and an effort by Nelson there was little to get the Emirates crowd off their feet. Doncaster’s Alfie May did hit the side netting from a tight angle as Darren Ferguson’s side mounted a rare attack.

Second half

There was a change at the break for the Gunners as Josh Dasilva came on for his first team debut in place of Calum Chambers.

Arsenal should have doubled their lead four minutes after the break as Wilshere and Giroud combined to set up Walcott on the break. Bearing down on goal he really should have scored but saw his effort deflected over by the keeper. Amazingly, the referee gave a goal kick.

Olivier Giroud’s second acrobatic effort of the night, this time an overhead kick from an Alexis corner, was cleared. When Doncaster attempted to break, Maitland-Niles showed impressive pace to cover.

Nelson had an effort clawed away, before Giroud, who had another penalty claim dismissed, took a couple of heavy challenges to his ankle and went down requiring treatment. Not long after, Walcott also went down with a problem and was soon replaced by Iwobi.

In search of an equaliser, Doncaster pushed men forward but whenever it looked like they had an opening they lacked the pace to free themselves of Arsenal’s defenders. It took a Mertesacker deflection to deny Mandeville an equaliser on 84 minutes and a combination of Ospina and the crossbar came to the Gunners rescue as Blair headed the resulting corner goalwards.

Wilshere might have made the result more comfortable with a lashed effort from the edge of the box that was blocked. By the end though, Wenger’s men were doing just enough to hold off their League One opponents.

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lee dicks on

Thoughts on Chambers getting hooked at half time..?


One nice day last summer my son and I decided to go fishing. We left early in the morning, crossing over Niagara River on the ferry. We stopped at a fisherman’s shanty on the river and bought a pail of minnows. With these, our fishing tackle and lunch, we started up the river to an old ship yard. The docks and ships were falling apart. The fish like to stay around the old piling and sunken ships. We fished for a while but caught nothing. Then I wandered around into different spots. Finally I dropped my line right into a… Read more »

I Didn\'t See It

Welcome back Rambling Pete! Can’t fool anyone with that silly disguise.

Gunnersaurus rex

For a moment I thought you were rambling pete

Dave M

Farking brilliant. Borderline best response ever made

Aussie Bruce

Is this as random as it sounds or am I missing a in-joke?


Is that you Theo? borderline something. Hashish?


Minutes recovering from injury.


whom were we playing xctly? we were hanging on our 1-0 lead like we did against dortmund few seasons ago .

lee dicks on

At least their fans in row Z took a few souvenir balls home. Pathetic finishing all round.

Bould\'s Eyeliner

Maybe an intentional effort to preserve stamina, given the number of first team players who were involved?

alex iwobi

doncaster are really good


21 years in England and Wenger has never won the league cup with Arsenal. Regardless of the status of the competition, that’s nothing short of embarrassing. On the basis of tonight’s performance, that doesn’t look like changing anytime soon.

Mate Kiddleton

Because the league cup is the defining trophy of Arsenal’s success.


That’s not the point. 21 years in a competition on the law of averages a top 4-6 side would’ve won it by now. The rest of the top 6 has. Obviously there’s more important trophies, but it’s still not an excuse.


This is literally a competition top clubs care so much about that they play teenagers in them. Dude, theres a lot to criticize Wenger over but not winning the League Cup is not one them,

Reality check

Agreed. Talk about CL on ther hand and we have a debate.

Drogheda gunner

In fairness to wenger he hasnt really taking it serously.


I’ve always been really pleased with the “not serious” approach. We get to watch exciting youth talent, and the get a chance to get matchtime with first team players. Would rather see that than us tire out our first team squad and sabotage the league or europa any day.


We got to a final we almost won against Chelsea with a youth team. We’ve won the FA cup 3 years out of 4. Who cares about the league cup!

Reality check

But we played the first team against Birmingham didn’t we.. Wenger did take it seriously that year to get the monkey off the back but was let down by Kos and Szczesny in the dying minutes..
I remember Gardner brushed kos’s head while going past him during the celebration, really disrespectful. That was the moment i realised Kos is not someone who’ll standup for himself or his team mates. Sadly it never changed. The project youth kept on getting bullied and pushed around.

5th Duke of Portland

It was Barry Ferguson. Also, just because he doesn’t lamp some moron, it doesn’t mean he doesn’t stand up for his team mates.


Yes it is! He’s always played a weakened team, if he wanted it he’d play the team he played in the FA cup ?


Law of averages, sure. The average of (21 x zero fucks) / 21 = fuck all.

P.s., I know my maths is not super accurate there, but it’s correct within many decimal places.


Low priority cup. He’s got more FA’s than anyone.


There’s only one thing embarrassing here mate.


We should have been 5-0 up in first 20 mins. Scoreline hardly reflects the performance


I for one am not embarrassed by our failure to win the league cup.


I might be embarrassed if all I’d won in the last 21 years is the league cup.

Like our all conquering neighbours.


Hey Don! Premiership managers are not judged by league cup performance mate.

Monkey knees



I know right???

I mean over the last 21 years Arsenal hasn’t scored in the 7th minute. You would think he would put an emphasis on that. Cmon ridiculous. OMG


That Jack Wilshere has got some potential


He played very well I thought. Measured and inventive


Agreed, could be a real asset if he can get his full sharpness back without the injury curse striking

Drogheda gunner

He linked up well with sanchez in the first half.i thought sanchez was awful in the second half.


I haven’t seen the match yet but agree with your assessment on Alexis. I expect he gave the ball away a lot??


And gesticulated and stuff, yes.


Dunno about anyone else but I love seeing him play. Really hopes he stays fit and I think he is better suited to that CM role than Ramsey, definitely looked better positionally than him tonight

Fireman Sam

I agree totally. Jack seems to move and pass with a really fluid style. Always a pleasure to watch. Hope the lad can stay fit.


No one plays like jack does. He is so inventive and is always assessing the game around him.
He makes others want to be a flicky and tricky as he wants to play.

David C

Should have put that game away much earlier. Hope Chambers and Walcott are ok.

Doncaster were obviously up for it and we did our best to gift them a goal in the 2nd. Luckily we have some really fast players.



I liked Maitland-Niles playing a through ball to the Doncaster player only to sprint back and tackle. That’s the sorta bat shit crazy the game needs

Crash Fistfight

Well that was a hard watch.

Hopefully Chambers is ok. I assume he went off with an injury – doesn’t make much sense otherwise. Theo had an ice pack on his calf the other day – I wonder if it flared up?


How great we are without Özil! It’s fabulous! After a tremendous season with Bournemouth, Jack was incredible this evening!

A different George

Once again: many of us think Ozil is a great player and we hope that Jack stays fit because he is a wonderful asset. Is it really that difficult to believe both of those things?


This is the infamous “Alex” Every article is about how Arsenal fans hate Ozil. SMH


You are seriously obsessed with Ozil!


I actually thought we were extremely poor in the second half and we desperately missed Paul’s decision making in the final third.



Paul’s was off all night too.


Leave me out of this please!


A win – but utterly disappointed about the performance. Elneny’s passing was especially slow tonight. Good to see wilshere back though.


Awful performance. When u see the other clubs spank championship teams by 4 or 5 we barely scrape thru against a league 1 side. Not exactly playing the kids either, some senior pros out there too

Fireman Sam

Yes but we are Arsenal, we never do things the easy way. A win’s a win and let’s move on eh.

Drogheda gunner

I watched the game they should of been 6 up by half time.and in the second i thought everyone was looking for the glory forthemselves


What is the status of Chambers? Injury?


I love Jack Wilshere! Must figure out how he’ll fit into the first 11 :’) I think profile wise he competes with Ozil (between Ramsey, Xhaka and Ozil)


Tongue wise, yes, for sure. Brainless wise, he had got a huge competitor with Ox but now the road is free.


Put down the bottle, you’ve had enough.


Seems like we would have had more on another night. 1-0 to The Arsenal always has a nice ring to it though. And the clean sheet is always welcome

Prince Reiss Nelson

Who cares about the score? It’s just the coprophilia cup, it’s all about giving the B team a run


And that explains why it was a hard watch… the b team if you can call a team with alexis, ollie, mo, ospina, theo a b team…were very very poor!


Well, aside from Alexis all the rest are currently playing off the bench, so yes it’s 1/2 b team, 1/2 youth development.

Kostas Greek Gooner

We played very focused today, which is puzzling because we tried to kill the match but we couldn’t.


I gotta say this was maybe one of the worst team performances i’ve seen from Arsenal in recent memory. Lackadaisical, sloppy and careless touches, just a general ennui about how the players went about this match. Nelson was atrocious, I hope thats the last time we see him at wingback he is clearly not fit for it. Maitland-Niles embodied much of Arsenal – careless and sloppy with his touches hopefully its just a feature of him not playing in his favored midfield. Elneny…just…what the fuck was that – so slow, I swear every time the ball came to him the… Read more »

Kostas Greek Gooner

do you remember liverpool?


I reset my memory of Arsenal every time we play like shit. Its the only way I can stay sane.


You’ll forgive everyone if they pay no heed to a word you day then?


Liverpool away? Few weeks ago…Ring any bells??


Cmon, it was fine, everyone was fine, just lacking that end product and some energy. Liverpool and half vs Koln was awful, not this. AMN and Nelson were about what you’d expect for young’uns being blooded in low risk situations. Elneny haters gonna hate.

Islam Ismael

El neny is slow, this a fact
But he is smart and taking good position all the time , and that is what he is capable of
He is developing but for now he is only a wonderful sub and that’s all

Fireman Sam

El Neny needs to move the ball on faster for sure. Hopefully he’ll improve that aspect because otherwise he’s a very solid player


He can cross the ball too


Yeah because this version of Arsenal has played all season long together. yeah


Its good to see Giroud and Wilshere linking up again.
I like Niles but Would have liked to see him in the middle and Nelson further forward rather than Walcott. Good finish though.


Poor goal keeping too


Our squad is weak.
No back up to Bellerin
Our back up at LWB is our LCB.
Our back ups at centre half are truly petrifying.
Our back ups to Xhaka+Rambo are average at best.
We’ve got some decent forward options.
But nowhere near as good as clubs we’re supposed to be rivalling and our two most talented don’t even want to be here.
This season will be Arsene’s biggest challenge yet.

Tom Lyne

Biggest disappointment for me was that none of the youngsters really impressed

Lord Bendnter

Confession, eventually, I got bored and switched to the Madrid game

Lord Bendnter

The commentator described one of Navas’s save as, “like a kangaroo jumping on a trampoline” and one of the Real Betis’ keeper’s save as, “you shall NOT PASS!!”

Spanish Gooner

Navas is a hugely underrated goalie, we should be sniffing around there if Madrid ever land De Gea


Good experience for the academy players and a first appearance Dasilva. Glad we won and I think this will really motivate them. Also great to see Jack put in a very respectable 90 minutes. Coygs.

Mustrum Ridcully

From the commentary, it sounded like Wilshere is in his way back. Fingers crossed he does not suffer any more injuries and can challenge for a starting berth.

If he can stay fit, he is a heck of a player!

Islam Ismael

Didn’t see the match, did Nelson played well?


He did ok, did the job going forward pretty well. Combined and carried decently, but his crosses were blocked a lot. Could use a little more practice defending.


Only two bright spots were Holding and Wilshere both played the whole match, not much else of great excitement. Nelson definitely was much more passive/reserved than he was in preseason and Da Silva looked like he had deer in the headlights look from the moment he stepped on the pitch. Was good to get Nelson long minutes in an important match, will obviously improve, but not the most noteworthy of debuts.


To be fair to Nelson, he didn’t really have much to combine play with on the Right. Theo was set up to make runs in and be 2nd striker, not intricate play on that wing. With Jack and Alexis on the left that’s where the action was always going to be.


I think we all would have loved to see 4-0, 5-0 etc, and I think we can all agree it was not one of the best of performances, but remember:
-We won.
-No major injuries (or at least to key players).
-Fringe players got a run out.
-Alexis and Jack got to build some fitness back after injury.

So not a bad night in my books.

SB Still

Looks like a favourable draw in the next round










Even though we weren’t convincing, it’s pointless to get upset over this performance. Wenger views it as a chance to give young prospects the experience of competitive first team football and to keep his second choice players fit and ready. Some positives: another 90 minutes for Wilshere (who looked good), Alexis is getting sharper, the youth prospects got to play at the Emirates and will get the chance to do so again. Sure, a 5-0 win would’ve been great but Doncaster played well and were up for it. Effectively, it meant more to them than it did to us and… Read more »


We did miss many chances but some perspective is needed here. All teams have games like this where they cant put chances away and results seem and feel tighter. But even the invincibles had similar issues with games where the media regularly claimed we could and should have scored 10 but ended with 2-0 or lower. The fact we are getting better at creating chances should be a positive here.


MOTM? Tony Woodcock. His hair is dougaltastic.


What’s carabao taste like ?
and is it worth winning a cup of it?


The most interesting part of the game was when I tried to eat 2 sausage rolls and down 3 pints of cider at half time before nearly vomiting on the upper concourse.


Cant you take alcohol to your seat? OUTRAGEOUS!!! I wouldnt goto big events if that was the case.


Girouds Bicycle kick. OMG. Deserved to go in. Execution was near perfect.


Nice to see Wilshere back,

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