Interlull round-up: Rambo, Granit, Torreira, Iwobi & more

17

Hallelujah…the final Interlull of 2018 is nearly over!

Before full focus returns to domestic matters, here’s how the lads have been getting on over the last week or so.

There are still a few outstanding fixtures, when those are done and dusted, we’ll update this post.

Aaron Ramsey

Wales 1-2 Denmark
UEFA Nations League
Friday, 16 November
Rambo played the full 90 minutes as Wales missed out on qualification at the hands of the Danes. Nicolai Jorgensen and Martin Braithwaite scored for the visitors before Gareth Bale grabbed a late consolation.

Albania 1-0 Wales
UEFA Nations League
Tuesday, 20 November
Ramsey was on the pitch for two minutes when Albania won the penalty that ultimately led to a humbling defeat for Ryan Giggs’ side. Bekim Balaj scored from the spot after Harry Wilson brought down Taulant Xhaka, brother of Granit.

__

Bernd Leno

Germany 3-0 Russia
Friendly
Thursday, 15 November
Bernd spent 90 minutes on the bench. Ex-Gunner Serge Gnabry scored for Germany who raced to a three-goal advantage before the break.

Germany 2-2 Holland
UEFA Nations League
Monday, 19 November
Bernd was on the bench again as Germany drew a line under their horrific 2018 with a disastrous last 5 minutes against a rejuvenated Holland. Timo Werner and Leroy Sane gave the home side a 2-0 advantage before Ronald Koeman’s men secured their place in the Nations League semi-finals – at the expense of France – through late strikes from Quincy Promes and Virgil van Dyck.

__

Sokratis

Greece 1-0 Finland
UEFA Nations League
Thursday, 15 November 15
Sokratis played the full 90 minutes and kept a clean sheet as the Greeks secured victory courtesy of an own goal by Mikael Granlund.

Greece 0-1 Estonia
UEFA Nations League
Sunday, 18 November
Sokratis was one of only two players to retain their place as an experimental Greek side lost their third of six Nations League games. An own goal by Fotios Lampropoulos separated the two teams. 

__

Granit Xhaka

Switzerland 0-1 Qatar
Friendly
Wednesday, 14 November
Akram Afif scored a late winner as Qatar surprised Switzerland 1-0 in their international friendly. Granit played 45 minutes.

Switzerland 5-2 Belgium
UEFA Nations League
Sunday, 18 November
Granit anchored the midfield as the Swiss produced a stunning turnaround against Roberto Martinez’s World Cup semi-finalists to secure a place in next summer’s Nations League finals. Needing to win by two clear goals, the home side found themselves 2-0 down inside 17 minutes but fought back via a Ricardo Rodriguez penalty and a hat-trick by Haris Seferovic. Nico Elvedi, who’d earlier been at fought for Belgium’s opener, also got on the scoresheet.

__

Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Gibraltar 2-6 Armenia
UEFA Nations League fixtures
Friday, 16 November 16
Henrikh’s boys took revenge for their shock defeat in the reverse fixture by smashing Gibraltar 6-2. Armenia must beat Liechtenstein and hope Gibraltar win against Macedonia if they are to top the group.

Lichtenstein 2-2 Armenia
UEFA Nations League fixtures
Tuesday, 20 November
Henrikh played the full 90 minutes as Armenia grabbed a late equaliser against Lichtenstein. With Macedonia beating Gibraltar to qualify top of the group, the result didn’t really matter. 

__

Matteo Guendouzi

France u-21s 2-2 Croatia u-21s
Friendly
Thursday, 15 November
L’Equipe labelled Matteo ‘the boss’ after an impressive debut for Les Espoirs as they drew 2-2 at home to Croatia.

France under-21s vs Spain
Friendly
Monday, 19 November
Matteo came on as a substitute as his country secured a 1-1 draw. After the game, he committed his international future to France. The teenager has been heavily courted by Morocco. 

__

Lucas Torreira

Brazil 1-0 Uruguay
Friendly
Friday, 16 November
Torreira was one of six Uruguay players to pick up a booking in a feisty encounter played at the Emirates. A controversial 76th-minute penalty by Neymar, the subject of Lucas’ cautionable offence, separated the two teams. The PSG striker netted after Diego Laxalt was adjudged to have fouled Manchester City’s Danilo.

France 1-0 Uruguay
Friendly
Tuesday, 20 November
Olivier Giroud scored his 33rd goal for France, a penalty, as the World Champions secured a slim victory for the World Champions against Lucas Torreira. The Arsenal man played 74 minutes. 

__

Mohamed Elneny

Egypt 3-2 Tunisia
Africa Cup of Nations qualifier
Friday, 16 November
Elneny played the full 90 minutes and picked up a late booking before Mohamed Salah scored the 89th-minute winner for Egypt as they beat Tunisia 3-2 in Africa Cup of Nations qualifying. Both teams had already qualified for next summer’s finals in Cameroon.

__

Alex Iwobi

Nigeria vs South Africa
Africa Cup of Nations qualifier
Saturday 17 November
Alex played the full 90 minutes as Nigeria secured a 1-1 draw away from home that sees them qualify for the African Cup of Nations.

View this post on Instagram

WE ARE MARCHING FORWARD 🎶 🦅🇳🇬

A post shared by Alexander Iwobi (@alexanderiwobi) on

Nigeria 0-0 Uganda
Friendly
Tuesday, 20 November
Nigeria
ends 2018 on a six-game unbeaten run but there was little to shout about in this 0-0 draw. Alex featured, although we’re not sure for how long.

17
Leave a Reply

avatar
newest oldest most voted
renaissancerosicky
renaissancerosicky

Love a good German national team disappointment these days. Low’s lukewarm football getting blown out of the water this year.

Gotta love Xhaka’s instagram post. Wonder if he tagged hazard xD

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Like Andrew, I’ve tried many times to fully understand just how this Nations League works. Still don’t get it.

What final? A final at the expense of France? Does that mean France aren’t in the next Euros? Relegation? To what? The Asian Cup?

Pedant
Pedant

It seems to be a separate tournament with teams in groups going from strong teams to very weak teams. You can get relegated from your group and play weaker teams in a lower group next time.

But it is separate to the big tournaments I believe.

A Different George
A Different George

There are four “leagues” so that teams play those of roughly equal strength. San Marino plays teams like Gibraltar, not Germany (though, right now, that might be competitive). Each league has groups (which I think are random draws, but not sure) and all your games are within your own group, not just your own league. The winning team in each group gets promoted to the next higher league. The lowest team in each group is relegated to the next lower league (but, of course, no relegation from the bottom league–you stay in Europe, unlike Brexit).

The four group winners from the top league play semi-finals and finals next year to win the Nations League (not to be confused with the four leagues within the League). This turns out to be Portugal, Netherlands, Switzerland, and England. (If Van Dijk had not scored in added time to achieve a draw with Germany, it would have been France instead of the Netherlands–those were the only three countries in the group.)

Then–wholly separate from the semi-final and final set-up–there is some mechanism, which I am not sure about, for a total of four countries that otherwise do not qualify for the next Euros to play in the Euros. I think this means that one minnow, one small, one medium, and one large, get in. This part needs someone else to explain because I have a headache.

Shank

Sounds like Granit remembered to bring his brain to the Belgium dismantling

Emyrates
Emyrates

This UEFA Nations League thing is a convoluted mess designed by someone who enjoys a bit too much cocaine and NHL. HEY LETS ALL DO LEAGUES, AND RELEGATIONS AND THEN A PLAYOFF AND THEN FINALS AND THEN.. TIE IT IN TO EURO QUALIFICATIONS F YEAH! AND THEN AND OH MORE COKE YEA. BRING THE BOWL OVER

Tanel
Tanel

Although it was an own goal by Greeks that separated Estonia and Greece, it was actually a worrying mistake by Sokratis (he got turned inside out by the Estonian forward and was too slow to prevent a cross) that led to the strong low cross that ended with the own goal. He was not very convincing and let his frustration show later on to earn a yellow for very animated discontent with the referee’s decision.

A Different George
A Different George

So, as long as that Estonian forward doesn’t play in the Prem, we are okay?

Bai Blagoi
Bai Blagoi

So.. Elneny is healthy again to play 90 minutes for Egypt. I wonder how he will participate for Arsenal during the coming tight schedule.

Nick
Nick

Nothing noteworthy from Ramsey over 90 minutes. What a surprise.

Pedant
Pedant

Two FA Cup winning goals and this one too https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_NhBBNHNDXI

Noteworthy?

Nick
Nick

The comment was referring to him not making the most of his auditions for Europe’s top clubs, who are all allegedly queuing up for him, but thanks for referring to performances from several seasons ago, and drawing our attention to a ten-second passage of play against a team shipping goals for fun at the bottom of the table. What an achievement. Why not link to the Galatasaray goal while you’re at it? You should also remind everyone that he never hides, he has a tremendous engine, and he suffered a horror injury in 2010. Those are all perfectly sensible justifications for doubling or trebling his wages.

Pedant
Pedant

Explain how anyone can infer what you have just said above from ‘Nothing noteworthy from Ramsey over 90 minutes. What a surprise.’

Db412
Db412

Big up arseblogs for putting this together, looks like quite a lot of our squad have had a bit of a rest over the past 2 weeks which should be a good thing!

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

Apart from the fact is was actually put together by someone else.

A Different George
A Different George

Once again, it looks like Ozil disappeared.

santori
santori

Don’t understand this Nation’s cup.

Added wear on players for the season.

That said, smashing match with the Swiss beating Belgium.