Well, it’s Monday and only two days until Arsenal play again. This weekend, after the debacle at Carrow Road, saw the internet almost completely devoid of Arsenal fans and those who were about decided that it was best if we all just collectively agreed that Arsenal hadn’t played at all at the weekend. It was the sensible choice.
I did brave a few post-match comments from the boss (Happy Birthday Arsene) and was glad to see no reference to any handbrakes, however there was talk of underestimating an opponent and, well, we all know this is far from being the first time that has happened.
But all focus should now be ahead, towards the Champions League tie against Schalke on Wednesday night. While some are choosing to dissect the game on Saturday, I’m more than happy to erase it from my memory. What is the point of asking ‘what is the point of Giroud’ when just a few days ago people were lauding him for his goal against Spain? Saying we need to buy this player and that player is all very well and good, but the Premier League Transfer window doesn’t open until January so there’s bugger all we can do about it until then.
Yes, more than a few of the players were underpar on Saturday, but we can’t write them off or go too overboard with our criticism. One bad performance from this crop does not a season end, and we must, once again, show patience and see how they respond to what I hope was a jolly good boot up their arses after the full-time whistle on Saturday.
Speaking on ESPN, Arsene seems as angry as we do, saying
We gave an easy game away and I am angry. In the end, Norwich gave us a good lesson, but it is one I would rather not have. They wanted the win more than us, showed more desire and it is hard for me to admit that. Too many lessons like this and you stand at the end of the season with too many regrets. The gap is very unpleasant. We had an opportunity that Tottenham could win and we could win, and we both lost. That of course makes the gap a lot bigger.
You cannot say you do not worry about that, but what is more disappointing is that we could not score. After we went 1-0 down we had the ball for 70 minutes and could not score a goal.
While, of course, some credit should go to Norwich for the way they parked the bus they had got on loan from Chelsea, it was our own impotence which was the main problem and that needs to be rectified. How we go about that, I’m not entirely sure. Talking about Theo through the middle is a moot point at this juncture as he’s not fit for Wednesday night but it is a discussion for another day. I’m not ready to write Giroud off, not even close, but I will concede that he doesn’t have the pace we need to tear defences open and without that in the side, missing with both Theo and Gibbs out injured, we were stagnant. But the problems at the weekend were more than that and we can only hope that Steve Bould can manage to replace the stupid pills with caffeine pills before our next match.
Maybe then, we will not only see some movement on the pitch, but we’ll also be able to stop repeating the same lesson we’ve been trying to get a handle on for the past four seasons.
[read a great interview with Andre Santos here where he talks about driving, his wife, fidelity, and his watch collection and if you missed my rant yesterday about the game at Carrow Road, you can read that here - Arsenal resume charitable programme to boost struggling teams]
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