Sorry for the late post, we had James call in sick, so it’s me piping out some sweet, sweet words for you all to read!
OK, so we had a pretty damn good day at the office yesterday. I had serious worries about a bloodbath, Everton had a week off, we had to go to Barcelona to take a pasting we were proud of and the boys were low on confidence.
Well, to cut a long story short, Everton didn’t show up at all. They were low energy and they allowed us to capitalise on that lack of interest with a sprightly display and a 2 goal win. Danny Welbeck connected with a superb Sanchez assist to round the keeper and tap into an empty next. Then Alex Iwobi landed his first senior goal for the club after his ambitious run was found by a sophisticated Sanchez long ball, he got sight on goal and blasted under the Everton keeper. Beautiful!
This wasn’t just a good result, it was a good performance. The first we’ve seen in a while. Danny Welbeck in the front three brought a mobility and freshness to the team we haven’t had for large patches this season. Big shout from Arsene to slip Iwobi in on the right ahead of Theo and Joel Campbell. The young Nigerian played really well. He has such a nice style to watch, he’s composed, tricky and has plenty of confidence. I really like him and he’s a far higher technical level than his seniors in that position.
Our midfield looked pretty solid as well. Elneny covers some serious ground. He’s a very good passer of the ball and his positioning really is chalk and cheese compared with Flamini.
If I were going to labour on a critique, it was how we saw out the game. Ospina was beasted by a late Lukaku challenge, he could barely walk and everyone could see that. Wenger didn’t take him off though. Ospina had to let a defender take his goal kicks… nothing says I’m broken quite like that sort of Sunday League carry one… then Everton had a corner and nearly scored when Ospina ballsed up as he gingerly came for a cross. Really awful management of a situation. It put everyone on edge.
But overall, it was a good day at the office. A win is a win. However, I have to say, it’s hard for me to get too excited about this starting 11. Sure it’s an evolution on what we’ve been seeing for the first few months of this year, but let’s not get this wrong here, Danny Welbeck is still a long way off being a world-class striker. We still have gaps all over the squad. It’s amazing how quickly Arsenal fans can go from despair, to… ‘shit, I think this side ‘might’ win the Champions League next year’… also amazing how quick the hope comes back.
I mean, we’re still in with a shout in the league, right?
There are plenty of dropped points to be had before now and the end of the season. Spurs looked ruthless against Bournemouth today, I think I have them down as favourites right now. Leicester dispatched of Palace, but you kind of feel their title-winning train is spluttering right now. They’re feeling it in their legs and I think the wheels might come off if they have a bad result. We just have to stay in the mixer…
3 points against Everton was more than I had hoped for. We play Watford at the weekend, and although they beat us at home last week, we should be taking them for three points. Then we have Palace, who are well out of form and then we take on West Ham, who could be a real pain in the arse for us. After that, it’s wet squib games. I think we’ve seen that Manchester City are dead in the water now… anyone who hires their new manager midseason is a fool, and they’re feeling the hit of that now. Pep Guardiola coming into Europa League football, can you imagine how excited he is about that right now?
Spurs have a tough run in on paper, they play Liverpool (who lost a 2 goal lead to Southampton today), plus United, Stoke and Chelsea. I mean, tough on paper, not sure how tough they’ll be as the season slides to a close.
Leicester have to entertain West Ham, United, Chelsea, Southampton, Everton and Stoke… that’s a tough run right there.
But, basically, we need to stay in touch. Who knows what is going to happen? A turbulent end is on the cards, we just need to be there to pounce if that happens! I just can’t believe we’re in this position, this league was ours for the taking!
As for Leicester, reckon it’d be smart to put a couple of pennies on them going down next season. I still can’t believe they’re going to win the league and play Champions League next year. All those additional games are going to kill them!
ADDITIONAL WORDS: Arsenal fans rounded on Stan Kroenke yesterday, asking him to politely do one. I always feel that’s kind of a subtext to removing the manager. Because that’s mostly the only reason you’d be mad at Stan… because he won’t get rid of Wenger. Protesting an owner isn’t really going to work though, especially when he’s living in a ranch in Texas. But, it’s a good start. It puts pressure on the club in the media… but you know a few cheeky stories about how we’re going to spend a few billion this summer will put Arsenal fans back into a Wenger coma for another season.
It is what it is!
Right, that’s all I have for you today. See you tomorrow for more textual frolicking in the green fields of Arsenal. x
“Fuck off Stan Kroenke, get out of our club” pic.twitter.com/J9nWqq9yJm
— Beard of Pirès (@BeardOfPires) 19 mars 2016