A Saturday early kick off. Actually my favourite time for a game because it gives us all the rest of our day back. If we win, it also takes the pressure right off. We can watch the FA Cup final knowing we’re only one more game from finishing the season in 3rd. Talking of the FA Cup… playing it at 1715 on a Saturday? That’s a bit rough eh? Not that I care for scousers… but apparently there are only 3 trains that go back to Liverpool after the game finishes. A hotel room is about 2
months dole money… the FA just ruined the Liverpool economy for the summer. Harsh.
Onto football matters. I’ll start with Frimpong, who, once again has dropped a massive social media clanger. He posted a picture of a tribesman with his head blown in half, naked and dead. It’s one of the most horrific images I’ve seen posted online by a ‘celebrity’. I have no idea why he felt the need to do something like that. Sure, nasty things happen in Africa. Sure, we’re sanitised in the West, but come on… making a political statement with no call to action and no warning what you’re about to see is out of order. Kids follow his feed.
He really needs someone to moderate his output in general. It flips between the down right cringe worthy to the x-rated grotesque. You should not be more famous for your Twitter offering than your on the pitch skills. Take a leaf out of Scezney book and switch it off… He should also have a word with Sagna and Alex Song about their charity efforts. A boy raised in London preaching about what goes on in a country he no longer lives in feels a bit rich to me. Why not tie yourself to a Charity over there and use your huge following to boost its profile. Sure would look better than selling some t-shirts with the word dench on them.
Just my opinion of course…
Moving past that, Wenger takes on his 900th game in charge today. Quite an achievement in a game as brutal and cut throat as the one we’re in today. He’s had a turbulent season this year, there were training ground rumours that he’d offered his resignation after the Fulham game earlier in the year. No questions over his future like that right now. He’s made the right moves bringing the team up the table and it looks like he’s moving in the right direction with the transfer strategy.
He said he’ll move players on this summer. We’ve struggled to move the dross on previously, but I don’t always think that’s because no one is interested.., I think it’s because we have unrealistic valuations of players who have failed for us. We need the squad spaces. Sell the at whatever the market values them at. The on cost of having to pay another years salary and having to sacrifice a space for a nothing player isn’t worth it…
The boss also said that he doesn’t think Robin will leave but he’s not sure if he’ll sign a new deal. Again, I don’t really mind if he stays and goes on a free at 30. It’s not ideal, but we know we’ll get another amazing season from him and to be honest, with his injury record, the chances are he’d be a bit of a liability after he crosses that threshold.
If Robin is planning on moving next year, we need his replacement this summer… and that isn’t Podolski for me. We should be looking at Giroud or someone like that for this summer so there isn’t a long bedding in period next year.
The game today is going to be a tough one. Make no mistake, Norwich on their day can give anyone in the league a game. They play attacking fast football and they have players who can finish. They outclassed Spurs when they beat them at the Lane a few weeks ago. We can’t afford to be their second North London scalp of the season. Their style of play falls right into our hands. We need to take the game by the scruff of the neck, we need to strap those finishing boots on and we need to give the home fans a very good reason to cheer this afternoon!
Hopefully it’ll be a bit of carnival atmosphere there today. I can’t say I’ve enjoyed being a season ticket holder this year. I’m not sure whether that’s because I have to write about it after the game which tends to double the pain, or because it’s just been so inconsistent and horrible at times. It feels like the fans have turned a corner this year. We’ve been united in disappointment and we’ve started to find out voice. We’ve been outside the top four… we’ve sat behind Spurs for large parts of the year… like a Christmas Carrol we’ve been shown what could be. I don’t want that. I don’t ever want to go back to being a crap club again. So let’s hope that all the upset we suffered this year is going to be used as lesson for the club this summer.
Finally, this is probably going to be the last home game we’ll see Pat Rice at the club. He’s been a mainstay at the club for over 46 years now. He’s won trophies as a player and an assistant. He leaves as a bonified legend of Arsenal. He deserves a song today and a huge amount of respect for the loyalty and service he’s given is. Hat tipped to that man… good luck in your retirement Pat. Hopefully we’ll see you doing some punditry every now and then!
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Beer time… have yourselves a wonderful day.