They said what?

Always fun to do this.

"He has good pace, a good shot and his pace is an advantage to use with his shot. And at the moment he has a good conversion rate between the chances he creates and the goals he scores. But that goes in cycles. No, he won't play like this forever. To maintain that conversion rate, which I think is the best in Europe, is very, very difficult."

"We don't plan for anybody. It is always the same - focus on our strengths and forget about your opponent. There is nobody special that you least like to face. All players have different qualities"

- Wenger

Yes, agreed. A good side should focus on its own ability and the damage it can cause opponents, except you still need to accept that your side might not be able to contain certain players. Not that Bale was influential against Arsenal. But he got away the once (or twice) and that was the difference. Even Manchester United turned up to the Lane with a game plan. Got to be shrewd. As for Bale's form, how can anyone predict the future and don't all quality players have lulls? He won't play like this forever? Really? Someone quickly tell Bale to pack it in, it won't ever be as good as it is now.

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"I actually don't think Spurs have been playing great at all. If you take away Gareth Bale's goals in the last month, I dread to think where they'd be. You can't expect a player to keep putting balls in the top corner every week - even the best players in the world can't do that - and sooner or later it will stop.

Don't get me wrong, the lad has been outstanding. What I like about him is that he scores important goals. He doesn't score the last goal in a 5-0 win, he gets the crucial ones.

Arsenal won't do anything special to stop him though. I watched them play Bayern Munich two weeks ago, who have got top-drawer players all around the pitch, and they didn't change the way they played. So they won't change for Tottenham, who can't be mentioned in the same breath as Bayern Munich.

And to be honest, I don't see Arsenal losing this game, I really don't. Spurs will almost start with 10 men because Emmanuel Adebayor doesn't do anything and if Arsenal's forwards play well I think they will get a result"

- Paul Merson

So much gold. This is akin to taking any given supporter off the street and asking them to talk about their teams local derby. Of course they're going to be utterly biased to the point of comedy. The bit about Spurs not really playing that well is the TalkSport soundbite for people that work in football media that don't really talk about football and just get paid to drum up dumbed down reactions to unoriginal statements that make no sense. Merson and Durham and others on one hand. Ian Macintosh, Jonathan Wilson and Michael Cox on the other. It's hardly a choice is it?

bBEddVZzCIAAXgt6.jpg large.jpg

"Blah blah bitterness blah blah tight trousers blah blah"

- Jamie Redknapp

Sorry, can't remember the quote but during the Sky Sports coverage of the game, Jamie 'my dad was let go as manager of Spurs' Redknapp remarked about how all AVB has done is continue what Spurs had before he was appointed coach. Even when a man that is set upon by the gutter press from the word go, even when this man conducts himself with supreme grace and respect and honour and lets the football do the talking, they still can't just say 'he's done a fantastic job at Spurs and he's turned them into a far more robust unit of players who look the part'.

Are people still pretending we didn't have a good squad of players when Redknapp took over? Kudos to Harry by the way. But come on, just admit you were all wrong about Andre Villas-Boas and move on with your lives.

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"It is difficult to understand how you lose a game like that. We had a great attitude and came out with no points because we were not efficient where it matters, at the front and in the back. Also, without being at any moment dominated, the only times Tottenham were dangerous was on counter-attacks. If you are dominated and they create chance after chance, okay you accept it, but this was a strange game to lose"

- Wenger

Looks like Arsene has his WengerVision glasses back on. Re-watch the game. You did not dominate. You had the ball in the one area of the pitch where you could not muster up any potential trouble for us. You we're tactically out-gunned and punished in the manner in which you have (in the past) dished out to so many many teams, including us. You lost because you deserved to. You lost because we won.

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"Lloris would have loved to become an Arsenal player"

- Philippe Auclair on Monday's Football Weekly podcast.

Yeah, but he didn't Philippe, he didn't !

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Some stats:

First 16 games - 20 second half goals conceded. 9 goals conceded in last 10 minutes. Points dropped in last 10 minutes: 8

Last 12 games - 2 second half goals conceded. 0 goals conceded in the last 10 minutes. Points dropped in last 10 minutes: 0

Brickwall.

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Also, late in the day I know, but great to see both Gareth Bale and Andre Villas-Boas,  player and manager of the month respectively, do themselves justice in the proceeding game.

Equally quick mention to Dawson. The screengrab above says it all.

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Considering adding the word 'narrative' to the bin where 'galvanise' and 'Machiavellian' continue to gather dust.