Premier League

Saturday 2nd December 2006

With Thierry Henry out it will be interesting to see how Arsenal try and play this one.  I guess they will stick Walcott in to try and open our defence up with pace and to try and contrast his ability with that of Lennon.  Adebayour might start up front to try and disrupt Dawson and King with his height, but they have coped well with all sorts of forwards so far this season.

For Spurs, expect Keane and Berbatov to start and while we have yet to win away and Arsenal are yet to lose at their new ground in the Prem, I think that Jol has the matching of Wenger when it comes to these games and he might just be able to go one better than last season's draw.

PREDICTION : -  Arsenal  1   Tottenham Hotspur   2

For more information on the opponents and their history, including full result history of matches between the two teams, click here.


ARSENAL :  Thierry Henry (neck); Phillipe Senderos (suspended); - (-); - (-); - (-); 

TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR : -  Anthony Gardner (knee); Paul Stalteri (knee); Hossam Ghaly (suspended - 2 of 3); Mido (knee)


Sky PremPlus (PPV) - (live coverage)
Match of the Day  (BBC 1) - 22.15 Saturday (highlights)  [Repeated Sunday 07.35]
Match of the Day 2  Sunday (BBC 2) - 22.00
Sky Sports 1 - Goals On Sunday  10.30 (highlights)
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Radio :  
BBC LONDON 94.9FM (London area only), Digital Radio (London area only) &  Sky Channel 0152
 (live coverage)
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If available on BBC radio, it can supposedly be heard in these countries on these stations ...
Australia (Melbourne) SEN  -  116 AM  Live Transmissions: TWI, Saturday. 12.45 & 1500 matches
Australia (Sydney)  Radio 2  -  1611AM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 12.45 Match
Singapore Media Corp Radio  -  93.8 FM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
South Africa  SABC (Radio 2000)  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
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North America (USA, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean)  Sirius Satellite Radio  Live transmission: Saturday - 12.45, 15.00 (TWI) & 17.15 (BBC) Sunday - 14.00 & 16.05 (BBC) Mon, Tue, Wed - Various times (BBC)

Internet :   Live webcast  - subscribers only
BBC London - click on link to "Listen to Tottenham Hotspur live commentary" on top right hand menu.




Arsenal   3   Tottenham Hotspur    0      (Half-time score : 2-0)

Premier League
Venue : -  Emirates Stadium
Saturday 2nd December 2006
Kick Off :  12.45 p.m.
Crowd :   60,115
Referee :  Graham Poll (Tring)
Weather :  -  Dry, chilly
Teams : - 
Arsenal :



Rosicky (Hleb 56)
Gilberto (c)

Van Persie (Baptista 81)
Adebayor (Walcott 87)

Unused subs: 

Tottenham Hotspur :


King (c)
Assou-Ekotto (YP Lee 46)

Tainio (Defoe 81)
Malbranque (Jenas 46)


Unused subs: 

Colours : -  (kits courtesy of

Tottenham Hotspur
Scorers : -  

Adebayor 21
Gilberto (p) 43
Gilberto (p) 72

Tottenham Hotspur


Cards : -  

Gilberto (foul)  70


Tottenham Hotspur 

Assou-Ekotto (foul) 31  
Jenas (foul)  71 


Match Report : -  
With the margin between victory and failure being quite thin, a couple of decisions that went against Spurs and for Arsenal (surprise, surprise) saw the game swing towards the home side and never swing back.

With an offside flag that deprived Berbatov of the chance to go through to shoot on goal, a dodgy penalty when Chimbonda got a touch to the ball first before Rosicky flopped over his leg, saw Graham Poll conned to send Spurs in at the break 0-2 down.  There was no coming back from that.

There was much said about all the games at the Emirates finishing wither 3-0 or 1-1 and it was hoped that Spurs might be the ones to break that as they were coming into a bit of form, with Arsenal in the dumps after two away defeats.  However, it looked like the home side were the ones more up for it and Tottenham suffered more away misery, even though this was virtually a home game.

Spurs looked sharp to start off with, but the opposition started to gain ground with some snappy passing, while our movement of the ball through midfield looked sluggish in comparison.  The whole issue of not winning away is the lack of tempo that seems to inflict itself on our game once we leave the Lane. 

Tottenham's first decent chance came after ten minutes, when Berbatov linked up with Malbranque down the left and put the Frenchman in on the left of the box, but his shot failed to have much conviction and it went wide, when he should really have worked Lehmann. 

Keano had been preferred to Defoe and set up Tainio, but his shot was sliced wide.  When Spurs did get a decent passing move together, the ball that set Berbatov in on goal had him pulled up by the linesman's flag, when he was clearly onside.  Then, with 20 minutes gone, Dimitar was robbed of the ball by Toure and a ball through the middle of the Spurs defence found Adebayour, who was close to being offside, who went on to beat Robinson with the Tottenham defenders trailing in his wake.

The goal gave Arsenal confidence to attack Spurs, but failed to trouble Robinson. although their attacks prevented Tottenham getting forward.  Benoit Assou-Ekotto was throwing himself into the passion of the derby match and throwing himself into tackles, as Arsenal concentrated their moves down his flank.  He got booked for his second heavy tackle on Ljungberg and was lucky to have waited that long. 

A van Persie free-kick flashed across the face of goal and Robbo had to save when Adebayour hit a shot straight at him from just inside the area.  One disappointing part of the game and perhaps one that showed Arsenal's desperation to win, was the number of times their players fell to ground in the box.  Luckily, Poll was wise to most of the efforts they made to win penalties, but he still gave two.  The first came three minutes before the break, when Chimbonda got a touch on the ball, but Rosicky fell over the full-back's leg to get the award.  Robbo went the right way but couldn't stop Spurs going 2-0 behind and that was practically that.

Tottenham had failed to match the energy of the Arsenal side and there was a hint that a second goal would come, but not in those circumstances.

Jenas and Lee came on at the break for Assou-Ekotto and Malbranque, with Tainio moving to the right of midfield, with Lennon swapping wigs to the left.  Having seen little of the ball in the first half, he was not in the best position to change that in the second.

Spurs had a chance on the hour, when Jenas struck a 30 yard effort that Lehmann could only parry out and as Lennon ran in, he perhaps got to the ball too quickly and taking it with his better foot rather than his left, he might have lost the split second that could have seen him score, as he was dispossessed.  Tottenham seemed to be looking a little more comfortable, with a measured ball through to Keane, seeing him crudely pulled back by Gilberto, who took the booking to stop anyone getting towards their goal.  Two minutes later the Brazilian was a hero.

Van Persie was sandwiched between King and Jenas as he ran towards the box and knocking the ball on with his hand, he got into the area, where Jenas' challenge took him down.  Needless to say that Gilberto knocked in the second spot-kick of the game to give Arsenal the 3-0 win, which was not a greater score-line because Robinson stopped efforts from Clichy and Eboue, while Spurs never got near equalising.

There is no point agonising over refereeing decisions or we would never have got over the Mendes goal at Old Trafford, but the way Spurs approach away games is a cause for concern.  We still appear to go out thinking we are going to get beat and then set about proving it.  I don't mind us losing as long as we have a bit of a go.  Maybe, just maybe, this might kick in, with the Christmas period coming up and the domestic cups reaching a stage where the games come thick and faster than normal, we can't afford to let useful points slip away.

Sort it out Martin, as we don't want to be going through a whole season without a win away from WHL.





Reaction : -



Interesting to see Lennon Tainio swapping wigs against Arsenal.  

Judging from this woeful performance, the team have been letting their hair down too often !!



What can one say !  Much promise - much heartbreak.  In a Poll of supporters how many votes would Graham get ?  
Whilst the rub of the green did not favour the team, it cannot excuse the woeful display for which Martin Jol must take his share of the blame.  His team selection and tactics were questionable to say the least ...  We do not play offside well and frankly that style does not fit with the Spurs ethos.  As for selection, why change the team that performed well against Wigan ?  Surely even the stubborn Dutchman must realise that the tinker policy does not work.  Why the talent-less Tainio ?  He is neither use or ornament and should be off loaded ASAP. 
I watched the game with another Spurs colleague and we both said "How many of the Spurs squad would get into the Arsenal team ?"  Answer - precious few.  That surely must be the yardstick. 

Sad to say Arsenal were stronger, faster, more determined and sadly much more skilful.  We have endured many years of under performance and I am not sure that the big guy will offer a better future, particularly if he continues to vacillate over team selection.  Choose your best eleven Mr. Jol and play them until injury strikes.

And PS that eleven should include Huddlestone. 

Roll on Southend.


Absolute disgrace today.

Drops Defoe after last week ?

Nobody passes to Lennon in the first half ??

Lennon on the left in the second half ???

Awful passing ????

No passion ?????

Jol has done much, but he is far too negative in away games.  Highly unlikely we'll make UEFA Cup next season now.  Unthinkable given the money we've spent. 


What a shocking display from the boys - I sat watching, hoping for any shred of something - ANYTHING ! - the combination of early kick-off and away fixture clearly not agreeing with the delicate disposition of them !

However the team weren't the only ones to have an off day and the Gooners '12th man' made sure to punish any mistakes the team made, take away the three 'goals'  and how many chances did the Goons make out of open play, 1-2 ? Robbo made a good save in the second half and that's the only one I can remember.  Graham Poll has surely now signed his own death warrant and shouldn't be allowed to go near another top level game.

So remove the ref and the game could/should have been much closer, 0-0 the most likely score as both teams failed to live up to the billing really, this doesn't forgive the Spurs boys complete lack of motivation to perform and MJ must shoulder much of the blame.

Zokora - where was he ? As far as I could tell he spent much of the game standing on the spot watching everything going on around him; BAE - a player I've been arguing with SJ on this site with for many weeks - what happened ?  Way to make me eat humble pie (thanks for that) to be replaced by YPL shows you're not having the best of days !  Lennon ... errr hello wakey wakey !  You're a fast winger - which means you take people on ?!  Keep on running Robbie ... and the list goes on.

We now have a mid-week fixture which is critical to team morale and Jol must surely ring the changes.  Zokora MUST be dropped either in favour of Hudd or Murphy (I would prefer the latter as he has more experience) and Keane must make way for Defoe, who bizarrely was the only one to show any fight when he came on (normally he looks like he can't be bothered).

I expect big things in mid-week and anything less than four goals will not impress...

Come on you Spurs (it's wakey-wakey time) !




Other scores this weekend :
Blackburn Rovers 2 Fulham 0 Saturday
Middlesbrough 1 Manchester United 2 Saturday
Portsmouth 2 Aston Villa 2 Saturday
Reading 1 Bolton Wanderers 0 Saturday
Sheffield United 2 Charlton Athletic 1 Saturday
Wigan Athletic 0 Liverpool 4 Saturday
Chelsea P Newcastle United P Saturday
Everton 2 West Ham United 0 Sunday
Manchester City 0 Watford 0 Monday



League Table
  P W D L F A Pts GD
1 Manchester United 16 13 2 1 35 8 41 +27
2 Chelsea 15 11 2 2 25 8 35 +17
3 Arsenal 15 7 4 4 25 12 25 +13
4 Portsmouth 16 7 4 5 21 14 25 +7
5 Reading 15 8 1 6 17 18 25 -1
6 Everton 16 6 6 4 20 15 24 +5
7 Aston Villa 16 5 9 2 19 15 24 +4
8 Bolton Wanderers 16 7 3 6 15 15 24 0
9 Liverpool 16 7 4 5 19 15 22 +4
10 Manchester City 16 5 5 6 13 17 20 -4
11 Fulham 16 5 5 6 16 23 20 -7
12 TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 15 5 4 6 13 19 19 -6
13 Wigan Athletic 14 5 3 6 17 21 18 -4
14 Blackburn Rovers 14 4 4 6 13 17 16 -4
15 Middlesbrough 15 4 4 7 12 19 16 -7
16 Sheffield United 15 4 4 8 11 20 16 -9
17 West Ham United 15 4 2 9 10 18 14 -8
18 Newcastle United 14 3 4 7 9 15 13 -6
19 Watford 15 1 7 7 10 20 10 -10
20 Charlton Athletic 14 2 3 9 9 20 9 -11



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