BACK IN THE GAME.
Well, back in the UK. Amazing how quickly you can feel out of the loop with football. I have so much respect for overseas fans. Timezones are bastards, kick off times are terrible, even trying to get involved in online banter needs scheduling. Big thumbs up to all those that manage it seamlessly!
So, I basically missed the whole weekend, but Arsenal had some good times.
Looked like we trounced West Ham, which is lovely. I said on the day of the post that I always have this view that West Ham cause us issues, when in fact, they don’t, Big Sam bends over to Arsenal like he bent over to United when he was the Bolton manager.
Still love any win over those lot. The match report sounded like it was a bit of an orgy of classic Arsenal football. Giroud’s goal looked spectacular. Some of the intricate passing looked fabulous. It all seems to be clicking at the right time.
At the start of the season, every week, I was bombarded with…
‘DO YOU FEEL STUPID ABOUT CESC AND SAYING HE SHOULDN’T HAVE BEEN PURCHASED’
Well, at the time I didn’t, then I did. But how stupid am I feeling right now? Not that stupid. I have my gripes with Ozil, but I thought he’d silence the Cesc love in if he hit form. Well, no one is asking about Cesc now. He’s having his usual second half of the season dip. Chelsea are starting to stutter. I mean, on the face of it, you’d have to say Santi and Ozil are preferable to Cesc. Quite amazing really.
… what about Chelsea. I mean, they tanked last year against Palace and Villa when it mattered. Could it be happening again?
So much hope floating about. As Alex pointed out yesterday, it’s the hope that kills you. You know you shouldn’t go near it, but it lures you in. Like that crazy girl at work… you know you should leave it… but you can’t… then you get your fingers burned. Then you spend the whole summer, sitting in your room listening to Placebo writing aggressive poetry about the folly of top four mediocrity.
… but, you know, it’s only 7 points?
No, I won’t. But hey, feels like the treble is on, even if only for another day.
But even there, I mean, is it so crazy to imagine we could score three without reply? They really are a turgid team. If we set up with pace and flair at core… well, you never know.
I’m not going to get carried away. As good as it could be, you have to temper it against how bad it could be. Spurs are pretty much out of the running after taking an embarrassing spanking from United last night… but Liverpool could ramp up the pressure further with a win at Swansea (we have the Scousers in 2 games time). All it takes is two slips and we’re right back in the mix.
It’s in our hands though. We have to play United, Liverpool and Chelsea. Win all our games and you never know. Well, you know we’d have broken our own record of 14 successive wins in 2002. So basically, we have to break our own win record to win the league. I mean, we could win it in other ways, but you feel that’s the best hope we’ve got.
The guys over at Sport Witness (brilliant site for cutting through the bullshit) have a story about Dybala (a player I love) and how maybe Arsenal have moved for him. The exciting Argentinian had this to say about us a few months ago.
“Whenever people speak well of me, I’m filled with pride. I will not deny that going to Arsenal and playing in the Premier League would be amazing. However, I am aware that my reality right now is Palermo.”
Now the Italian papers reckon we’ve gone in at £28m for us.
After some extensive Grimantubing, he can play across the front line, he’s explosive going forward either running onto balls or from a standing start accelerating past players with his power. I think he’s an absolute talent and it’d be interesting if we were moving for him as an upgrade on Theo… who looks like he’s come to the end of the road with Arsenal.
We’re really upgrading all over the place at the moment. Podolski, a very one dimensional player has been shifted on, Theo can barely get a game… you’d have to imagine Flamini will see the exit door this summer.
Smart shake ups. A sign we’re evolving. Could be a much closer affair next year.
Right, that’s all you have from me today! Have a good day.