Arsene appears pretty desperate to land that touchline ban in January, who wouldn’t, the football isn’t great, nor is the weather!
“This is the 1950s, where the guy talks to him: ‘If you’re not nice, I might punish you.’ Come on, let’s not waste time,”
You should have to uphold rules of respect in the game, there’s literally no reason to be mean to refs. However, part of me understands where he’s coming from. Players don’t need to be overexplained. Firstly, it wastes time. Secondly, it gives too much credence to players feelings. Make the decision, move on.
That said, PGMOL (Professional Game Match Officials Limited) need to be moved out of the darkness into the light. It’s unacceptable in a game as intense as the Premier League that match officials aren’t grilled post game for their decisions. If the fans knew the refs a little deeper, maybe it’d make their lives a little easier? If they knew they had to explain their actions after the game like a manager, maybe they’d think twice before doing something rash?
The league should start thinking about paying these guys a little bit more money. £100k is the top out rate. That’s a disgracefully low salary considering the cash swilling about in the game. No person receives more universal shit than the refs and the lino’s. If you make it to the top of your game, you deserve your £500k a year. You also have the added bonus that if you pay these guys properly, a higher calibre of candidate might step forward, because only a weirdo would officiate for a grand a week after tax.
Anyway, Wenger shouldn’t have said what he said, but part of me thinks he’s pulling a Trump and trying to deflect away from the real story. His team has taken 10 points from the last 21. We’ve played 5 of the bottom 8 in that run. Now we play a maybe resurgent Chelsea. I’d be deflecting and trying to land a self-imposed ban if those were my numbers.
I have no idea what Arsenal are going to turn out this evening, but I get the sense it won’t be a Cup Final like resurgence. The players will know they have no chance, and I’m not sure Wenger is capable of mind-bending motivational talks these days.
Arsenal are without Kolasinac, Monreal and Koscielny. Per Mertesacker will likely start with Chambers and Mustafi. There’s not a lot of confidence in there and there’s potential for a lot of weakness physically and mentally.
Our midfield has no Ramsey to keep the tempo going. We’ re looking at Xhaka and Jack to keep things tight, and as we saw against United, they are very susceptible to pace, which is a worry with a rested Cesc finding Chelsea speed demons like the rested Hazard.
Put it this way, the game isn’t set up for us to succeed. I’d be looking to inject some pace and energy into the middle, and I know I keep offering it up, but AMN in the middle next to Jack would be far from a disaster for me. He’s great with both feet, his recovery pace is out of this world, and he’s looked very composed in the games he’s had so far.
Up top, we should be thinking about Danny Welbeck. We need to have a player who can stretch Chelsea and bully them. That’s not Lacazette. I still think a two-man strike force of Welbz and Laca could be interesting, with Danny dropping deeper when Chelsea break. I don’t think we’ll see any sort of invention with the formation tonight, which makes us sitting ducks with the injuries.
But hey, we’ve seen crazier things happen over the years. Just a shame they rarely come against big teams in the league. Conte will know exactly what his plan is today, and he’s one of the smartest managers out there.
It’ll be a fun game either way, I just hope it’s not a really sad one where I question everything tearfully on a printed 2018 inspirational quote. I’ve already lost Logan Paul, don’t let me lose my Arsenal top 4 hope.
Have good one! x