Weekend Roundup: Captain Fantastic Gets the Champagne Football Flowing

It really gets no better than watching a post-match press conference in which Fat Sam Allardyce tries to convince everyone that his Blackburn rovers side should have won a match that they lost by four. It really takes a set of low-hangers to attempt something that brazen and foolish, and watching him embarrass himself made this win all the sweeter.

Arsenal put on what was arguably their finest attacking display yet this season, and with all of the goals this side has put in already, that's quite an achievement. It was also certainly an example of what this Arsenal side can do when they are at their best, and the same can certainly be said for El Capitan Catalan Fantastico, Cesc Fabregas. Fab 4 was behind seemingly every attack the side made before coming off, and even got on the scoresheet again himself, something he didn't do much of last season.

The match started off with a groan, I'm sure, from the Arsenal supporters, as in the fourth minute, Nzonzi hit a looping header off of a long lob into the box by Paul Robinson that went just beyond the outstretched hands of Mannone and into the net. Sickening way to start off, but there you go. However, almost immediately after the restart the run of play was all Arsenal, leading up eventually to a brilliant goal by our leading scorer and all around great Belgian, central defender Thomas Vermaelen, another scorching left-footed strike from the edge of the box to equalize. It wasn't all sunshine and rainbows just yet though, as before long Blackburn had regained it's lead off of a David Dunn strike that deflected off the leg of William Gallas and crossed up Mannone, who was unlucky to allow two early goals that were a bit on the flukey side.

That was the last from Blackburn however, as the Gunners began to take the fight to them. Blackburn were aggressive in defense, but on this day the fluid movement and crisp passing from Arsenal were more than a match for anything that Rovers and their Fat Bastard-looking manager could muster. And since so many people enjoyed it the first time, here's Sam again with his identical cousin:

It was the Cesc Fabregas show from then on, as he slid a beautiful ball in to Robin van Persie who coolly finished low with his left across goal into the right corner equalize, and shortly after setting up Arshavin in similar fashion, whose strike (also left-footed) replicated van Persie's, to take the lead, which they wouldn't relinquish. 3-2 at halftime to the Arsenal was well-deserved, despite what Sam "Hasn't seen his prick in years" Allardyce would say. They did have something to complain about, as early in the second half Vermaelen conceded what should have been a clear penalty that wasn't whistled, taking down Dunn in the box. Fat Sam said that there should also have been a red card, but Fat Sam also tells people he weighs 190 lbs, the camera adding another 215.

There was a fabulous fourth for Fabregas, alliteratively enough, Rosicky playing a lob to Cesc on the edge of the box, slightly left of center, and the Catalan's (what else?) left-footed strike was placed perfectly, making up a bit for his effort against Olympiakos that was denied by the woodwork. Anyway, if anyone was unconvinced by his 4,312th midweek denial of an imminent departure to Barcelona, they should pay heed to his celebration, kissing the badge to reassure supporters (which incidentally didn't stop the Daily Telegraph from running this piece of shit... I do so hate the English press). I love Cesc, and as the song says I would gladly let him shag my wife. But since I'm single, he'll have to settle for Kurt's wife. As an aside, I think we need a new Song for Cesc... He really only has two, and both are reworkings of older songs. For godsake Eboue has like nine songs; so, I'm challenging all Gooners to come up with something original for our Captain Fantastic.

But wait, there were more goals! Arsene brought on Theo Walcott for his first appearance of the season, and he didn't disappoint, as Arshavin from the left of the box passed to (who else?) Cesc, who laid it right into the path of Walcott, striking a low finish into the left corner, past the hapless Paul Robinson. A great way for Theo to start his season, and I think we all have high hopes for him, above all that he stays healthy.

Cesc and Arshavin made way for Ramsey and Bendtner, and it was Big Nik who capped off the scoring, moving right across the top of the box and firing in a scorcher that ricocheted in off the post. It's great to see him scoring like this, not least in that it continues to quiet the haters, and the fewer of those I hear, the better I feel. 6-2 the final, the points well and truly won but more importantly a dominant league performance. Arsenal now sit fourth in the table with a match in hand on Chelski, United and Liverpool, and no reason to think we can't continue to climb with the side's current form and upcoming fixtures. Have a look at the highlights and comments from Wenger and William Howard Taft:

And, since this is the Weekend Roundup, let's roundup the other action from around the Premier League, and see how United's whiskey-smelling manager did in Celebrity Pick 'Em:

Bolton v Tottenham
Prediction: Bolton 2-2 Tottenham; Reality: DINGDINGDING WINNER!
Sirallix was dead-on with this one. As always, neither of these sides were good enough to win.

Burnley v Birmingham
Prediction: Burnley 2-1 Birmingham; Reality: DINGDINGDING WINNER!
Sirallix is two-for-two, Burnley chalking up an impressive home win against another of the potential relegateds.

Hull City v Wigan
Prediction: Hull 1-1 Wigan; Reality: Hull 2-1 Wigan
Wigan looked the better side in a scoreless first half, but were decimated by Hull in the second, despite pressing to equalize late on. The same Wigan side who beat Chelsea a week ago.

Wolves v Portsmouth
Prediction: Wolves 1-0 Pompey; Reality: Wolves 0-1 Pompey
Pompey get their first three points of the season, although it hardly takes the pressure off the club. A large injection of oil money is still unlikely to save them from relegation, and Wolves are screwed anyway.

Man Utd v Sunderland
Prediction: Man Utd 75-0 Sunderland; Reality: Man Utd 2-2 Sunderland
A completely undeserved point for United, as Sunderland were the better team on the day, and wonder of wonders, a lucky break in Kieran Richardson's sending-off (for something that Rooney gets away with consistently), leading to their equalizer. God I hate United.

Everton v Stoke City
Prediction: Everton 2-1 Stoke; Reality: Everton 1-1 Stoke
Toffees continue their disappointing run this season, failing to beat a Stoke side that they should have handled quite easily. Moyes' teams have historically started slowly, but this season they've yet to recover from being shellacked by the Gunners on the opening weekend.

West Ham v Fulham
Pred*hiccup*iction: West Ham 1-1 Full Ham; Re*hiccup*ality: West Ham 2-2 Full Ham
London Derbies are never easy, and these two teams, to me, are fairly well-matched to begin with, so a draw seems a fair result.

Chelsea v Liverpool
Prediction: Chelsea 2-2 Liverpool; Reality: Chelsea 2-0 Liverpool
Chelsea put in their first truly convincing performance of the season, getting two second-half goals. Liverpool never really looked like winning, and looked flat for the bulk of the second half.

Aston Villa v Man City
Prediction: Aston Martin 1965-Man City *vomit*; Reality: Match not played as of this writing.
The jury remains out on whether Aston Villa will field a squad of classic sports cars and whether Man City will be puke. Although the odds on the latter are pretty good, in my opinion.

I'm sure Sirallix will be back for future editions of Celeb Pick 'Em (or CPE), seeing as he'll do just about anything for a Klondike bar's worth of sweet, sweet alcohol.

I'm sure every Gooner was quite proud and happy to see Thierry Henry back at the Emirates, if only as a spectator. With his recent comments that he'd like to come back to Arsenal in some capacity (joking that he'd even be the waterboy), I know I love him that much more.

Elsewhere, our favorite drunken Scot, Alex Ferguson, is in a bit of hot water after publicly questioning the fitness of referee Alan Wiley. Frankly, I thoughy SAF had good reason to kiss Wiley's ass, but Alex thought differently: "He (Wiley) was not fit enough for a game of that standard. The pace of the game demanded a referee who was fit. He was not fit." The FA is investigating and charges of improper conduct may follow. Ferguson may also get hit with pizza again. You never know, Cesc is still around and we do play United once more...

And Old Twitchy himself, 'Arry Redknapp apparently doesn't pay his taxes. Excuse me while I double over laughing...

That's all for now, Gooners and Goonerettes (and assorted followers of other clubs, cuntish or not). We now stare into the abyss of the Interlull, but more on that on Friday. Until then, you stay classy, Gooner nation...

- B, a Gooner