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Sunday, 28 September 2014

You Sold Bale We Signed Mezut Özil

Although in recent seasons our derby encounters with Chelsea have become a far more significant litmus test of the Arsenal’s aspirations (or lack thereof!), for me personally this match is strictly business, compared to the more sentimental connotations of our dates with the whipping boys from White Hart Lane.

Living as I do on the manor and with the vast majority of my kith and kin worshiping on one side or t’other of the North London divide, the hype surrounding Derby Day and the implications of the subsequent result impinge on every aspect of my daily life. 

We might not have lost at home to Spurs since 2010 (and that was the first defeat in seventeen years!), but after beating them three times last season, our neighbours were due some good fortune. So as eagerly as I was looking forward to Saturday’s game, with all the stress involved, much like a trip to the dentist for an extraction, I invariably end up much relieved to have got it over and done with.

Considering our historic domination and our control of possession on the day, doubtless Spurs fans will feel far happier to have come away from our place with a hard-earned draw. But after all the pre-match banter this “honours even” result failed to settle any of the arguments and left most Gooners feeling an anti-climactic sense of dissatisfaction. 

Mind you, this was far better than the horror of going a goal behind, facing the prospect of having to go home, turn my phone off and hide under the covers for the next couple of weeks. Nevertheless, in view of the cost, in terms of the further loss to injury of Arteta, Ramsey and possibly Wilshere, after the palpable explosion of roof-raising relief following the Ox’s equalizer, it was most disappointing that we lacked the firepower to kick on and secure the much needed three points over the course of the last fifteen minutes.

Truth be told, with a wage bill that’s allegedly higher than Chelsea’s and around double that of Spurs’, on paper the Gunners should have more than enough in the tank to overcome our local rivals. But derby games rarely respect circumstances and although we exercised our authority with our control of the game, between Pochettino’s tactically astute approach and Arsène’s seemingly stubborn refusal to maximize our assets, we struggled to impose our supremacy in the only place that really matters, in front of goal.

With Chelsea and Man City in such prolific goal-scoring form, if the Gunners continue to fail to convert draws into victories, it won’t be long before the league leaders disappear out of sight. Yet I remain optimistic that our cogs will fall into place and that this team will begin to click. Nevertheless, it’s hard to disagree at present, with all those who contend that Welbeck can’t spearhead our campaign with a 25-goal contribution. 

Danny ‘s energetic efforts could make a difference, if we get sufficient bodies in the box to feed off his industry. Yet all too often on Saturday he was a lone target, which also left Özil floundering, struggling to have some impact, with our somewhat static midfield failing to make the sort of advanced runs that enable our German star to shine. 

Hopefully Walcott’s imminent return will improve matters, but after witnessing Diaby’s first-half appearance in our Cup defeat to Southampton in midweek, this rare sighting of our lanky French midfielder only highlighted quite how short of stature the Gunners are compared to the majority of our opponents. The “men v boys” analogy is bad enough when it regularly raises it’s head against the likes of Chelsea, but it’s downright embarrassing to be cast as the proverbial six-stone weakling in a contest with Koeman’s impressively powerful South coast outfit.

Although the Ox and young Callum Chambers came away with the most credit on Saturday (along with Kabul’s resolute efforts for the opposition), amidst all our injury woes, I’m sure I’m not alone in casting covetous glances in the direction of East London, angered by our negligent failure to include a call-back option in Carl Jenkinson’s loan deal. And having failed to sign Carvalho to bolster the blatant deficiencies of Arteta’s aging limbs, I can’t help think that Wenger could’ve done worse than to sanction the return of Alex Song.

But any further debate on this particular subject is futile, until the transfer junket begins all over again in January. Meanwhile, here’s hoping we can make do and mend to get our Champions League campaign off the ground in midweek and to ensure our esteemed manager doesn’t again end up with egg on his face at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, courtesy of his former favourite disciple, Cesc Fabregas?

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Twitter: @thedogsbollock


Anonymous said...

You must be goggle eyed with excitement

Anonymous said...

What a terrible blog. Might want to attend grammar school before attempting to bore people with your random musings.

Anonymous said...

Is that you might or I might?
Grammer school boy

Anonymous said...

Arsenal are miles behind Chelsea and Man City and always will be while Wenger is in charge. He is tactically inept and does not have a plan B. He seems to think that not passing teams into submission is cheating. He complains when teams defend and get a well earned point. He then goes to his rivals with no defensive strategy and gets stuffed. He picks players like Koscielney who is always hopeless against good teams with big strong forwards because Arsenal don't have an alternative. He has more players sent off than any other club because he never admonishes the players because he believes they are never red cards. He has become the most naive manager around. With the money swilling around Arsenal and the enormous wage bill that they have managers of Arsenal's rivals would win leagues and cups because they wouldn't keep 47 midfield players while not having a reliable goalscorer or a strong and fast centre half. Every fan can see the problem except for Wenger. A player who does not have a rival for his position gets soft and lazy, well so does a manager.

Anonymous said...

Typical scum twat who obviously found football 5 years ago.
Twice the wage bill and £2mil a match game more than Spurs.
The Sugar years has cost us dear, we have fallen behind the optimism and vision of the ars*,that's not any Spurs fans fault,just the board of businessmen,running the club at the moment.
However I haven't/didn't see a great brilliant side like a Man City take us apart,I saw a poor Spurs performance lead and then give away a terrible equaliser to an average side who were delighted with the goal and were so relieved and pleased.
The diving, the going to ground at the slightest touch earned a point! you fantastic footballing winners, Arsenal are a total embarrassment to London football. You should be well out of sight of Spurs and maybe Chelsea but you're barely ahead of Spurs and way behind Chelsea.
With a new stadium,same match day money, and maybe new owners, the gap will close massively, and the scum will all look back in the near future to these your very own wasted Sugar years!
How we will laugh and gloat then, Years of arrogance and bullsh*t wasted and stuffed back down your throats! You will all probably scuttle back to your Islington and Camden wine bars to discuss the cycle lanes of London,or the pollution,or politics again,but not football!
Mouthy twats always have been always will!

Anonymous said...

1 Madrid were desperate to get and paid way over market value, the other Madrid were desperate to get rid but still got way over market value for. Even as an Arse fan u might just be smart enough to work out who's who.

Are said...

...and you're still shite!