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Wojciech Szczesny plays for Arsenal Under 21s at Anfield

Szczesny starts for Arsenal but can't prevent U21s defeat to Liverpool

By
Graeme Yorke

PUBLISHED:

22:19 GMT, 8 April 2013

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UPDATED:

06:03 GMT, 9 April 2013

Wojciech Szczesny started for Arsenal’s Under 21 side but could not prevent the visitors falling to defeat against an impressive crop of Liverpool youngsters at Anfield.

The Poland international has not been given a senior appearance by Arsene Wenger for over a month, with Lukas Fabianski being preferred over his error-prone countryman.

Szczesny's dad recently launched a furious attack at Wenger, accusing the Frenchman of making his son the scapegoat for the Gunners' poor.

Back in the game: Wojciech Szczesny played for the Arsenal Under 21s at Anfield

Back in the game: Wojciech Szczesny played for the Arsenal Under 21s at Anfield

The 22-year-old defended his manager however, claiming his dad was wrong to criticise his boss.

But Wenger did not even name Szczesny on the bench for Arsenal's 2-1 win at West Brom on Saturday.

'I rotate the goalkeepers on the bench because when they are two games on the bench then they work for two games, because when they sit always on the bench they lose fitness,' he said.

Last night at Anfield, Adam Morgan beat the Pole to draw first blood for Liverpool before Chuba Akpom equalised for the Gunners.

Krisztian Adorjan put the Reds back in the lead after half-time, but Serge Gnabry kept his cool to level things up once again.

Struggles: Szczesny was dropped by Arsene Wenger and has had to make do with a seat on the bench

Struggles: Szczesny was dropped by Arsene Wenger and has had to make do with a seat on the bench

Struggles: Szczesny was dropped by Arsene Wenger and has had to make do with a seat on the bench

There was no response, however, after Morgan snatched his second at the Kop End to clinch victory for the hosts.

England
Under 21 international Jonjo Shelvey also turned out for the Liverpool
side, but it was Adjoran and Morgan who ensured the hosts ran out
winners.

Adorjan burst down the right flank before drilling an accurate cross into the area for Morgan.

The 18-year-old made no mistake, knocking the ball past the stranded Szczesny from inside the six-yard box.

No cigar: Jonjo Shelvey tries an effort with his left foot as Arsenal's defenders can only watch

No cigar: Jonjo Shelvey tries an effort with his left foot as Arsenal's defenders can only watch

Tussle: Gedion Zelalem of Arsenal takes on Stephen Sama (left) of Liverpool

Tussle: Gedion Zelalem of Arsenal takes on Stephen Sama (left) of Liverpool

Spotted: Jose Enrique watches form the stands as Liverpool edged out Arsenal at Anfield

Spotted: Jose Enrique watches form the stands as Liverpool edged out Arsenal at Anfield

West Ham eye Marouane Chamakh as Arsenal target Serge Aurier

West Ham eye striker Chamakh as Arsenal target Aurier to replace Sagna

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UPDATED:

23:09 GMT, 14 December 2012

West Ham are interested in taking Arsenal striker Marouane Chamakh on loan in January.

The 28-year-old came on as a substitute in Tuesday's Capital One Cup defeat at Bradford and missed a penalty in the shootout.

Flop: Arsenal's Marouane Chamakh

Flop: Arsenal's Marouane Chamakh

He is surplus to requirements at Arsenal and, although there has been interest from Fiorentina, the player wants to stay in England.

West Ham, however, face a battle to hold on to Momo Diame, with foreign sides now showing interest in the midfielder alongside Newcastle and Arsenal.

The Senegal star will be fit in three weeks after damaging his hamstring last week and can leave for 3.5million.

Arsenal, meanwhile, have added Toulouse right back Serge Aurier to their list of potential targets. The club remain wary of Bacary Sagna leaving next year and have watched 19-year-old Aurier.

Steve Bould admits Arsenal fans can feel frustrated

Of course the fans are frustrated! Arsenal No 2 Bould admits complaints are fair

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UPDATED:

23:51 GMT, 24 October 2012

Arsenal assistant manager Steve Bould sympathised with disgruntled fans after Wednesday night's 2-0 Champions League defeat by Schalke at the Emirates Stadium.

Klaas Jan Huntelaar and Ibrahim Afellay capitalised on slack defending to score in the final 15 minutes in the Gunners' first home defeat in the group stage for nine years.

Angry supporters left in their droves once Afellay had put the result beyond doubt and the few that remained booed at the final whistle.

Victorious: Schalke players celebrate their win

Victorious: Schalke players celebrate their win

With manager Arsene Wenger serving the final game of a three-match touchline ban, it was left to his No 2 Bould to reflect on a highly disappointing evening.

'We've lost at home and of course they're frustrated. We are as well,' Bould said.

'We don't like losing football games, but we have to pick ourselves up and start again.

'We haven't played anything like we can – that was the big disappointment.

'We haven't performed and we lacked confidence, for whatever reason.

'It's a tough competition and Schalke are a good side who beat Dortmund at the weekend.

'They're doing really well and a 0-0 would have delighted us. We looked like we were going to get away with it for a long time.

'We looked jaded – I don't why that is. Since coming off the international break we haven't performed.

'We were very sharp against West Ham but since returning from the internationals we've been jaded.'

Arsenal were restricted to just one shot at goal in the entire match and had to wait until stoppage time for that, with substitute Serge Gnabry producing a late attempt.

But their failings in their own area were more damaging with both goals – just reward for Schalke's second-half dominance – exposing a fragile defence.

'The lack of chances isn't worrying, but it's not what we want or are accustomed to,' Bould said.

'We normally create chances and now we're not, so we need to correct that.

Lacking: Mikel Arteta and Co could not not produce anything

Lacking: Mikel Arteta and Co could not not produce anything

'Their first goal was a poor goal – a great finish, but it wasn't great for us.

'Scoring first will be a major plus for us. We've gone behind in the last five games. To keep coming back is tough. An early first goal would really help.'

Schalke now top Group B, one point above Arsenal with three matches left to play, and Bould promised an improvement against the German club on November 6.

'There are nine points left to play for. Wherever we get those points from it doesn't matter, but I'm sure we'll perform a damn sight better than tonight,' he said.

Bould revealed Theo Walcott will miss Saturday's Barclays Premier League clash with QPR due to his bruised lung.

Fair enough: Steve Bould said the fans had a right to be frustrated

Fair enough: Steve Bould said the fans had a right to be frustrated

However, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is back from a hip problem while Jack Wilshere should be available for selection.

Schalke manager Huub Stevens took no satisfaction from masterminding Arsenal's first group defeat in Europe since Inter Milan prevailed 3-0 in 2003.

'For me it's not important how Arsenal are playing, but how Schalke are playing,' he said.

'Records are not important for me. For me it's important that the team is playing well.

'In the first half we didn't play well. In the second half we played a good game. We deserved to win 2-0.'

Six Nations 2012: Half-term report from six experts

Half-term report: Six experts on the Six Nations

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UPDATED:

00:47 GMT, 9 March 2012

Sportsmail's panel of experts featuring Phil Vickery, Serge Betsen, Phil Matthews, Paul Griffin, Andy Nichol and Adrian Hadley deliver their verdicts on the tournament so far.

Impressive: Wales' George North

Impressive: Wales' George North

Phil Vickery (Former England prop and captain)

Who has been the star of the tournament so far

I don’t think anybody has been consistently
outstanding and the title is still up for grabs.

Can England beat France in Paris and then Ireland

France play with stability and simplicity under their new coach. England need the courage to attack.

Will anyone stop Wales clinching the championship

No, it’s in the bag. They have nucleus of players that could achieve
something special in the long term. The fact has never changed that you
need territory to win.

Have teams lapsed back into a negative kicking game

Coaches favour kicking
as there’s far less risk.

What has been your moment of the Six Nations so far

The skill level and size of the Welsh back line means they have produced the most eye-catching moments.

On basis of Six Nations games, is Warren Gatland a shoo-in for the Lions coaching job

Well I’d pick him, put it like that. Warren’s great gift as a coach is that he’s a people person and not biased at all. He will pick the top players, and if that includes a lot of Welshmen, that is only because they are the best players on offer.

Serge Betsen (Ex-France flanker and BBC pundit)

Who has been the star of the tournament so far

Wesley Fofana. He’s made a great impression for France. Wales’s George North is not far behind.

Can England beat France in Paris and then Ireland

France in Paris are too experienced. If Ireland beat Scotland they will be very confident in London.

Will anyone stop Wales clinching the championship

France have the ability to win anywhere if they are in form. It will be close but France may surprise Wales.

Have teams lapsed back into a negative kicking game

No. I’ve not got that impression.

What has been your moment of the Six Nations so far

The Ireland- Wales match was a brilliant contest with great rugby. The try by Fofana against Italy. It was a dream moment for him to score on his debut.

On basis of Six Nations games, is Warren Gatland a shoo-in for the Lions coaching job

Yes. He’s an ex-Wasp like myself. ‘Once a Wasp always a Wasp.’ I have to support him.

Phil Matthews (Ex-Ireland flanker and BBC pundit)

Who has been the star of the tournament so far

Full back Rob Kearney, followed closely by flanker Stephen Ferris. But any of the Welsh team as well.

Can England beat France in Paris and then Ireland

France will win. They are the better team. If Ireland had Paul O’Connell fit I’d be backing them, but not now.

Will anyone stop Wales clinching the championship

No. They are developing a ‘new breed’ of talent and are very disciplined, unlike the Gavin Henson era.

Have teams lapsed back into a negative kicking game

No. Teams are being more considered in when to attack but they are not as conservative as before.

What has been your moment of the Six Nations so far

Tommy Bowe’s second try for Ireland against France. I thought we were going to win but…

On basis of Six Nations games, is Warren Gatland a shoo-in for the Lions coaching job

Oh yes. There’s nobody else at the moment.

Jonathan Davies (left) and Gethin Jenkins celebrate against victory

Highlight: Jonathan Davies (left) and Gethin Jenkins celebrate victory over England

Paul Griffen (Former Italy scrum-half)

Who has been the star of the tournament so far

Captain Sergio Parisse. I don’t know how he does it but he keeps putting up in the big performances.

Can England beat France in Paris and then Ireland

Has to be France at home. They will be too strong. But England will win at home for the same reason.

Will anyone stop Wales clinching the championship

No. They are the in-form team and have emerging talents like North, Cuthbert and Priestland.

Have teams lapsed back into a negative kicking game

Yes. Perhaps, they should look to change the points system. That might encourage more attacking.

What has been your moment of the Six Nations so far

Wales hanging on to win at Twickenham. It meant a lot to them and showed they can win the big games.

On basis of Six Nations games, is Warren Gatland a shoo-in for the Lions coaching job

There is no one else in the running. It’s his if he wants it.

Andy Nicol (Ex-Scotland scrum half & BBC pundit)

Who has been the star of the tournament so far

There is phenomenal quality across all the back rows but Ross Rennie has really shone out for Scotland.

Can England beat France in Paris and then Ireland

No. Their attack is pretty blunt and they have been lucky. Two from five is all they could have hoped for.

Will anyone stop Wales clinching the championship

No. The game in Dublin was everything and to follow that with wins over England and Scotland sets them up.

Have teams lapsed back into a negative kicking game

It’s easier to coach defence than attack and that’s the bottom line. Teams make themselves difficult to play.

What has been your moment of the Six Nations so far

George North’s bludgeoning power coming off that wing and then a beautifully deft offload against Ireland.

On basis of Six Nations games, is Warren Gatland a shoo-in for the Lions coaching job

I think so. I’ve always believed it should be someone from Britain or Ireland but I think Gatland qualifies now having served such a long apprenticeship first with Ireland and then with Wales. He’s no longer a foreign coach in that sense. He was very successful with Sir Ian McGeechan out in South Africa so he knows what it’s all about.

Adrian Hadley (Former Wales winger)

Who has been the star of the tournament so far

Gethin Jenkins has been outstanding and put in massive amount of work, particularly at the scrum.

Can England beat France in Paris and then Ireland

Ireland were better than France and it wouldn’t surprise me if England turned them over.

Will anyone stop Wales clinching the championship

Wales must be careful. Italy will do a disruptive job and always get one unscripted win each year.

Have teams lapsed back into a negative kicking game

Teams don’t want to risk running the ball out of their own half in case you lose the collision and get penalised.

What has been your moment of the Six Nations so far

The final whistle drama for Wales at Twickenham with that ‘try’. You need luck to win this tournament.

On basis of Six Nations games, is Warren Gatland a shoo-in for the Lions coaching job

Yes, unfortunately! Not only will Wales lose their head coach but he’ll no doubt take some of his excellent coaching staff and trusted lieutenants with him. It will be a big loss for Wales for next year’s Six Nations.