Nothing quite like leaving your phone in an Uber with a driver who sprechens the sh*te ingléa Nightmares. Disconnected for almost 14 hours. Can you imagine?
Anyway, thanks to James for dropping a match report yesterday. When your football starts at 1230, you know how we roll after! I had a mezcalita… a new one on me. Beer and bloody mary. I felt so manly.
ANYWAY. Thoughts on the weekend.
Petr Cech was a masterstroke
What a signing. He’s really coming into his own of late. He makes the right saves at the right time. No frills. Just a very good keeper. That strike late on in the game where he rushed off his line was exactly the sort of situation that 1) Chezzer wouldn’t have rushed out for (rooted to the line was his thing) 2) we’d have conceded from.
Petr Cech just knows what to do. The world class saves counter must be up to about 10 by now. How many can you remember from last season? I can’t remember any.
Ozil is so hot rn
The boy has become a man. It’s like something has clicked with him. Like he can smell greatness in the air. He’s almost too good for the league. He’s 2.5 seconds ahead of everyone else. He’s immense. He’s a hard worker and he’s so creative it’s like he’s an IBM experiment in footballing AI.
Absolutely integral to our run in. So glad he’s getting the credit he deserves. So glad he’s playing like we hoped he would (and please don’t pretend he’s been this good since the start).
Big game results
That was a massive game at the weekend. Make no mistake. Coming hot off the heels of beating the best team in Europe can be tricky when you’re mentally fragile. I didn’t think we’d lose, but that’s the sort of game we’d normally draw. Meekly. But not bad enough to really complain. We need to be winning those games and we need to be doing it consistently.
We still lack maturity
The finish to that game was beyond farcical. I know we held on, but we went full blown panic mode. Sure, it was exciting to watch, but I don’t want exciting at that stage. I want turgid. Slow. Assured. Boring.
Flamini should be fined two weeks wages for that cameo. It’s was embarrassing to watch him playing the… ‘I’m six years old and I like chasing the ball’ role. We need to be smarter than that because against a better club, we’d be dropping points.
‘It’s only November’
There are two sides to this coin. One side is that it’s not November, but you get the jist. The second is the ‘play it cool boy’ crowd who are cogent that it is early on in the season. Now, I’m here on that. We were top of the league way more emphatically than this two seasons ago and we flunked out badly because we didn’t have the squad. However, on the flip side, we’ve also been out at this stage plenty of times in the past… more often than not we’re done by this stage chasing 4th.
So us being strong now should be enjoyed, but enjoyed cautiously. The biggest challenge we face now is fitness. Our squad isn’t good enough to sustain major injuries. We can’t afford to lose Sanchez, we can’t afford to lose Ozil and we most defintely can’t deal with the loss of Coquelin. I get a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach when I think about Flamini or Arteta manning the middle for any time period longer than 3minutes.
Lose any of those guys and we’re on the struggle bus.
I love this boy. I really do. But he’s making it really difficult to love him when he makes a habit of giving the ball away and losing us goals in almost every game. He needs to mature. If anyone needs a stint out on loan, it looks like it’s this lad. He’s struggling with confidence and because of that he’s making silly decisions. When your confidence is low, you force things, when you force things you make mistakes. Not a good weekend for him.
So, all in all, a great weekend. Made even more spectacular because of the absolute loss of the dressing room that’s going on at the Bridge. I said a couple of seasons ago I thought he’d lost his shine… well, he certainly has now. What’s going on there goes beyond a bad run. It’s a loss of the dressing room. It’s hilarious as well. I mean. outside of Steve Mcclaren, he looks the most likely to get fired. 5 losses already!
Anyway, we are top of the league. Enjoy it! Back with the Sheffield Wednesday preview tomorrow. Have a fun evening.
P.S. I watched the game in O’Hanlons in East Village. What a great bar. So many TVs. The guys and gals in their make up their own songs as well!