Watching Arsenal over the last month or so hasn’t been very fun. It’s been quite a terrifying, angst filled, trepidation fuelled 90 minutes after 90 minutes. We’re all waiting there hoping that somehow we’ll get through the game without injury. Somehow we’ll begin to be able to depend on our squad with players coming back. Oh and somehow pick up the 3 points. The way we’re playing at the moment (2 wins in 7) none of the above is happening. That’s the way I’ve been getting through these Arsenal games. I am always worried at the slightest over-stretch from a player that I almost begin yelling at their hamstrings/calfs/groins and other such. Even when one of ours plays a slightly astray pass and the receiver has to stretch more than necessary to get to the ball has become a heart in mouth moment. We’ve had the discussion over and over and out fitness coaches, training sessions, player conditioning – I along with the rest have no idea whatsoever. Is it just horrendous luck? Or bad player management? We’ll only ever find this out after Wenger has gone and the book is written I’m afraid so there’s no point in dwelling on it. This is one of my key points on this post. The superfan with all the answers is plaguing our world and has long since infiltrated the ground. I have a friend who’s a ST holder who messaged me after the game saying how he heard, and I quote; “anyone who claps Giroud should be euthanised!”. What an absolute shocker of a statement. We do not have a divine right to win every single football match, trophy, tournament that’s going. When are people going to realise that winning something, anything for that matter, is a truly special achievement and not something that can be done on a whim. Herein lies the problem…
– There are a great number of morons at football matches the world over (always at least a few at every ground).
– All people have phones.
– All people have social media.
– Morons have phones and social media.
– Their opinion is matched by a multitude of morons on social media.
– This must mean they are right and therefore should vent their fury.
– Morons now have a voice.
A simple but pertinent analogy that can be applied to ever football club in the Premier League. Every single one. It’s now come to a point where there are conflicts within fan bases about things that may or may not have happened. Hindsight is king and the simple reason that there are fans at loggerheads before, during and after games. The ridiculous thing is that it’s always about transfers. Always about not buying the right players or enough players. The same people banging on about the same things over and over again. People have forgotten something fundamental to following a football club. Supporting them. Through the good and the bad. The vitriol has been around for far too long at grounds and needs to be left for pub discussion. Venting frustration at a player, manager or team for a missed chance, and injury or for some reason not having taken 3 points is farcical. We are 2 points off top spot coming out of our historically worst month as Novembers go so it isn’t all bad. Yes we have injuries, yes we’ve missed opportunities and yes the others may not be where they should be but ‘should’ is the operative word. No one/team has a divine right to be anywhere but where they are. Hard luck can sometimes play a factor but we are where we are. We need to get on with it and move on. For that to happen we need to have one voice, at least during the games.
The performance vs Norwich wasn’t actually that bad considering 2 key players left the field for us. It’s just been a case of not taking advantage of our dominating starts this month. We could and probably should have been 2/3-0 up at the break but quite conceivably could have been 2-1 down had they taken their chance at the end of the half. Ozil continues to dazzle and he’ll well and truly need to continue that if we are to maintain any sort of challenge. Sunderland at home should be 3 points and anything less will see even the fence sitters to join the morons. In what will be a huge week we play Sunderland at home and then Olympiakos away in the Champions League – a week that is going to determine our mood going into a busy festive period. It does feel as though it’s win or bust as I can’t help but think our wheels will come off of we don’t get through to the next phase of the Champions League.
The last few things I want to speak about are that man Jamie Vardy. It’s some run that he’s on and the way that he slams the ball home every time in front of goal is only a good thing for England as well as refreshing for the Premier League. It’s an unbelievable achievement and one that, no matter what pundits say about the lack of quality opposition, will be hard to beat. Remember that Leicester have played Arsenal, Man Utd and Southampton. Not to mention Norwich and West Brom, games in which our main goal threat Alexis Sanchez was kept quiet. It’s a quite brilliant achievement and well done to the man. It gives hope to any young Sunday league-er and hope is the reason we love the game. In addition Chelsea’s difficulties continued with Costa behaving like a petulant child. All this tosh about his ‘controlled aggression’ is now (as I’ve previously said) folly. He’s a man who if he doesn’t get his way will cause mayhem. Arguments and bib throwing will keep him on the bench for a couple more games – not what you need with a crunch Champions League game on the horizon. What was interesting is that Mourinho stated that this was their best performance of the season. 0-0 away to Sp*rs. Now I get that the spuds are playing well but it does show the measure of where Chelsea are this season. The boat is rocking but they look to have stuck with the captain of the ship to see them through to calmer waters. On a lastly hilarious note I really do hope you all saw Cesc kick the ball directly at Willian’s face, if not google it now! He looks a mere shadow of himself last season.
My next post will follow our Champions League exploits next week so let’s hope we’re at least one of the English flags that are flying in Europe come next Wednesday evening.
Have a great week folks.
Follow me on Twitter @MiteshLakhani1