It is been few months since I wrote something about the Arsenal Football Club. My last blog was on SportsKeeda portal where I wrote a letter to Robin van Persie appreciating his decision to leave. That was after the home match with Fulham where we screw up a 2-0 lead and Man United came back from 2-0 down to triumph. If you want, you can read that article here.
And to be honest to the facts, nothing exciting has happened about Arsenal. As always, we are losing stupid games, drawing when we were considered straight favorites and winning by margins you would expect Indian national team to beat my school team i.e. 1-0. Let’s have a recap of our games since the Fulham match-
- Tottenham Hotspurs- 5-2. I have no doubt that would have been a different game altogether if Adebayor would not have given a red card. Our rivals would have been equal (I fear more than equal) with 11 men on the pitch. A big let-off for us.
- Aston Villa- 0-0– No comments, seriously or how do you explain that performance against a relegation struggler? Only Mr Wenger can.
- Everton- 1-1 A good performance against a strong team.
- Swansea- 0-2-You never saw Arsenal beaten this comprehensively 5 years back. Absolutely toothless.
- Olympiacos– 1-2– One more match where we surrendered the lead, away from home.
- West Bromwich Albion- 2-0– An OK performance, two penalties (first was dubious) and a good win.
- Bradford 1-1 (lost on penalties)- I can’t justify that. Irrespective of how defensive the other team is but a club with stature of Arsenal HAVE to WIN THOSE MATCHES.
- Reading- 5-2– Bottom three side beaten but not before they scared us.
- Wigan 1-0– Once again, not dangerous enough and not creative enough. Lucky win.
- Newcastle United 7-3– The best match in the list offensively but a poor defending display.
- Southampton 1-1– Boring & Lucky
- Swansea (FA CUP) 2-2– Blowing up lead in death minutes, AGAIN.
- Manchester City 0-2 – May be we were unlucky to get Kos red-carded in the ninth minute but one shot in the whole match that too at home won’t get you a CL place, Wenger.
Out of these 13 matches, I never felt the rush of blood. Arsenal was never this predictable. Our quick moving, one touch passing game used to be an USP of the league. The curling shots that evaded keeper at the last moments, the dipping free kicks which so easily used to fool the shot stoppers, the midfield that always found an Arsenal player at the end of the ball irrespective of how many defenders were in the way and the solo tricks and dribbles that mesmerized numbers of young Arsenal fans few years back (that includes me); that is just not evident in the current squad. Even the touted maestro Santi Cazorla is off color.
While watching matches, I sometimes think which aspect of my team is making me happy- the answer is none of them. The strikers are not threatening, midfield does not have enough options to choose from to pass the ball and the less said about the defense, the better. When your captain is a world class defender with a regular in his national side and you still leak that amount of goals consistently (bulk of them because of his mistake); the morale of whole team and club is affected. We, at Arsenal Football Club, are going through that phase.
What I find most strange among all this is that at the club, at forums, at blogs and at social networking sites; the Arsenal followers have stopped discussing about the title chances. It hurts to see people discussing about Tottenham losing because that boosts our chances to be in the top 4 and give us a chance to compete in Wenger’s Champions League. Man United, Man City and Chelsea are so far ahead in the race that nobody wants to talk about that. We all, the fans, have accepted our defeat in this race. The fact that Arsenal’s name is taken with Tottenham, West Brom, Everton is a testimony to the fact that we have lost the plot. In no sense, I disrespect the mentioned clubs. They have been super so far. It’s the downfall at Arsenal that has resulted in this fury.
Coming to Wenger, I no more have faith in him. When he started here, he was cunning and smart, getting good deals for the players and delivering results. Now, he is an arrogant man still trying to prove to the world that his ways will still work. Surely Professor, you have not heard about the Theory of Evolution by Charles Darwin or you would not have been so stubborn in your work ethics. The money has become important in every single task of the day. I see no reason why it won’t affect the world’s most watched football league with the biggest of the names in there.
And to make it clearer, 15 years back, my mother used to adjust her monthly budget to get me a certain chocolate or toy. And you are saying that you won’t tweak rules; you won’t get us players for Arsenal. We are not asking you to buy Fernando Torres at 50 million pounds. But Demba Ba at 8 million is a steal, especially when you are short in the department. Trust me Wenger, you won’t find “exceptional players’ that you mention so many times these days in 10 million pounds. That excuse should not be used again. We have made enough “Superstars” at the club who are winning leagues elsewhere. It’s time to get us some, we the fans who have been ferociously behind you in your every decision since you have gone berserk about managing Arsenal, giving every silly explanation to our fellow fans belonging to Chelsea, Liverpool and Man United.
Since van Persie left, I don’t remember how many times I have heard the phrase- None is bigger than the club. We have consoled ourselves every time but I am sure that this applies to Mr Wenger also. He can’t ruin the club because he wants to be right again. The board has to say to him- None is bigger then the club.
And as we know, there is two weeks before transfer window closes and Mr Wenger will again buy some assurances and nothing else (I wonder how much he pay his speech writer after every match. That guy is damn enough and has done a successful job in keeping the fans at bay since last so many years). The only thing at the club that makes me happy is Jack Wilshere. The boy plays with a belly in his fire and due to any unfortunate reason, if he chooses to leave the club, only one word can describe it- catastrophic.
We have some really tough games comes up in next one month- Chelsea, Liverpool, West Ham and the Champions League tie against German giants- Bayern Munich. As a fan, I want to say that we are going to win every one of them but the realist in me just can’t blur out those words. The realist is waiting for few good things happen- one more 5-3 at the Stamford Bridge (of course, sans van Persie), seeing off a resurgent Liverpool and progressing to the last 8 of the CL brushing aside Bayern. And then the fan will shout at the top of the voice, will celebrate and will dance.
Uncannily, life has gone one dimensional as things are slowed at Arsenal Football Club. The Gunners are not giving me enough reasons to smile these days and I believe that to an extent, that has affected my personal life also. I need to smile, yell and be content after those 90 minutes. The wins against those teams will be a big tonic. But for the time being, a new signing among the number of link-ups will do.
Make me smile, Arsenal, please..
And you want to discuss or debate or update on whats going on at the Club or get information or news join this new group on facebook –> https://www.facebook.com/groups/arsenalindiasupporters/… hope u check it out and add more of your gooner family to it too