Hangover over, three more points for the Arse.

November 6, 2011 18 Comments by Sian

Arsenal 3-0 West Bromwich Albion

And how they prayed for a stress-free afternoon. And lo, unto them He did grant it, and there was much rejoicing. And He saw that it was good. If He’d care to grant similar afternoons in the coming weeks, we’d all be much obliged. Sorry if my Bible language is a little off, it is always a struggle when you grow up in a Godless household. That is, unless you count a certain Frenchman fond of saying “Weeeeeeell, I belieeeeeeve…”

Yes, yes, we got three points and three goals yesterday at home against West Bromwich Albion, but what was nice was that it didn’t feel like it was going to be wrenched from our paws with a minute to spare for a change. After the euphoria of Chelsea away last week, the fun time good times were as rudely awakened by Marseille at home as if we’d been kicked out of bed by a big fat hairy sleep-destroyer.

I apologise for the lack of match blog during the week. I’m in my third year of university at the moment and finding time was an issue. But mostly, I thought the match was so bloody boring that I would not have had a Scooby as to how to get it started. The only thought I could come up with worth writing down was that it was dull and a bit of a sicky hangover after last Saturday, but that we looked solid and that the first match of the pair had been looking to go to a 0-0 as well, before Aaron Ramsey pulled the match out of the muddy puddle with a goal. So that goal becomes twice as important as previously. And I’m just going to blame Marseille for the rubbishness of the matches otherwise, because I can. So I will. And I have.

There was a bit of concern after that mid-week match that we’d not managed to keep up any momentum like a good team should, which is true, but hopefully this weekend’s match will have allayed fears a little. If the momentum was started in the League then it was to be carried on in the League, and carried on in the League it was. Bollocks to the Champions League, it’s a spoilt brat competition anyway. I kid, I kid, we all love Champions League nights, but what I’m saying is chill out, peeps. The odd few that told us not to get too carried away with the Chelsea win were only too happy to get carried away with the snoooooooooozathon that was mid-week, so unless you like to live your life in a land of depression, fog and whistling brain corridors of emptiness, then I’d stop panicking if I were you. There is still time to qualify. It would have been easier to have done it on Wednesday, but you and I both know that ‘easy’ is just not the way the Arsenal rolls.

Anyway, back to West Brom! In a fixture in which we got battered last year, before Samir Nasri almost spared our blushes by two comeback goals, it was a match you’d imagine the boys would have gone into feeling nervous. Then you realise that half of the players who played in that match aren’t even here or playing here any more and you can see why they took to the pitch looking pretty confident. I don’t remember who played in that match so it’s easier to list who didn’t: Szczesny (not yet discovered), Vermaelen (Achillesed), Jenkinson (only 12 at the time), Santos (Fenerbache-ing), Ramsey (Stoked), Arteta (Scousing), Gervinho (cultivating his hairdo), RvP (broken). Actually, I’ve just checked out the match report from then and only Alex Song and Laurent Koscielny started both. The rest are either currently injured, have gone to another club now, are lost at the training ground, or have buggered off to play with their money.

It made interesting reading, actually. Looking at the squad then and the squad now, the only player I wish we had back on the pitch is Bac. Wow, how much the team has changed! And while others would disagree, I would argue for the better. Why? Well we may have lost our two ‘star’ players to shitheads – though I imagine Cesc missed that match through injury also – but the team we saw yesterday actually looked just like that – a team.

Critics would say Robin was still our star man, scoring our first goal and assisting the other two but remember, the main mantra of this blog is ‘FUCK THE CRITICS’. His 22nd minute goal was the simplest of tap-ins after all the legwork was done by Theo. Mind you, having watched other teams on MOTD last night, I’d not be surprised if some of the £384854838848384583 strikers we have in the league would have managed to balls that one up. Anyway, he stayed as cool as the Dutch are to tap it home for us to get off the starting blocks. We played some beautiful football yesterday, but just lacked a little in going the final few yards of the distance. Some of our passing was back to the ‘Ooh, ahh’ of yesteryear but a big criticism of Arsenal (a critic that we will, in this instance, accept) is that we don’t score many of those BOOOOOOOM goals.
You know what I mean? You know, the BOOOOOOOM goals. The ones that go BOOOOOOOOM. The non tippety tappety goals.

Well, step up and make yourself seen, Mr. Belgium. It began with RvP once again, who cut it back from pretty much the goaline for it to dance straight through Gervinho – who really seems to like to do that, no? – and for Thomas Vermaelen to pick it up and blast it home. Is that really his first goal since Stoke 2010? He celebrated it like it was, mind. What a guy.

What a face.

So, we were two-nil up and in control. WBA didn’t really bother Szczesny; in fact I think it took until about the 90th minute before he actually had to make a meaningful save. But anyway, a 2-0 lead is still a wobbly position for anyone and so it was always important we got a third. In the 74th minute it came through Mikel Arteta, who has been happily plodding away in the midfield without doing anything too spectacular this season. I think it’s fair to say his goal was a beauty though. I think it was Chris Kamara who said this morning that it was a total team goal, and it was.

RvP may have been a star again but yesterday Koscielny and Vermaelen were solid as a really solid thing, and Carl Jenkinson had a brilliant game. He’s had his critics (remember the mantra), but he looked confident and strong on the pitch yesterday. And his crossing is better than that of anyone else out there. After a difficult, fiery, hellish start, which was no fault of his own, he seems to be finding his feet. I am SO Team Carl.

WBA woke up a little in the last 10 minutes a la Arsenal last year, but their efforts were to be proved fruitless. Another good win and a positive goal difference for the first time since what feels like 1997. Somehow, in spite of six points in a week, and a win over a team above us, we still appear to be in 7th. But we are level on points with ambitious high-flyers
Liverpool and Tottenham (the second of which have two games in their warty hands). No matter, if we keep on keeping on, keep playing like a team and just ignore everything else around us, it could be that our rough patch will show itself to have been just that.

Finally, I know our new banners got a bit of criticism (MANTRA) yesterday, but I really liked them. I hear they were chosen by fans, and they fit in well with the ones we already have there. The little floodlight flicker show in the second half was less impressive, as it had us going “OH MY GOD, IT MIGHT GET ABANDONED”. I think that just goes to prove that we’re still extra cautious as fans. And that’s not a bad thing, Being over-cautious can stop you getting run over by a car. And no one wants that.

International duties now – BOLLOCKS. Holland have already qualified, right? So can RvP not just go “I feel a niggle in my knee. I must remain in London, lest I inflame it and anger it! Over-caution is the only way for me!”

Seriously though, please don’t get broken anyone. Please. Let’s leave things with these brilliant quotes from Marco van Basten, re. Robin van Persie. They actually sound like they were said by one of us. Good old Marco. Good old wise Marco.

18 Comments

  1. Treez
    2178 days ago

    Great mantra and another great blog. Felt almost like old times yesterday. I thought Carl Jenkinon combined v well with Theo and Thomas and Koscielny looked much more secure at the back. Very positive… Forward!

    Reply

  2. Alex
    2178 days ago

    Great blog SIan, the wait is always worth the blog, take pride you excellent blogger :)

    Was at the match yesterday, Club Level :) for free :D and I enjoyed the whole experience from start to finish, especially the team play involving the goals, RVP is our captain, and he leads by example as a captain should, involved in all 3 goals, absolute quality.
    After yesterday, I’m defo Team Carl as well, his crosses are amazing! Mad variety, drilled, lofted, near and far post, anything you could want from the lad, a future fan favourite along with the Ox.
    Ramsey had a great game as well, played a few unfortunate short passes but his ball to Walcott for our 1st was the bees knees.

    Love the opening biblical paragraph, hopefully the big man keeps the Captain fit over the interval or even better, home in London. Amen.

    Marco van Basten made my morning with his article, top bloke.

    And no worries about the lack of weekday blogs, if I’d known you were at Uni, I wouldn’t of asked in the first place, the weekend ones are a ‘blessing’ enough ;)

    Keep up the good work Sian, COYG!

    Reply

    • Sian
      2178 days ago

      Club level ooh, get you! I am going to try to keep up the midweek ones, but the main reason I didn’t bother was that there wasn’t much to write about anyway! Thanks for putting up with the wait though, I’m sticking it at, so thanks for sticking with me! :D

      Reply

      • Alex
        2177 days ago

        The quality has only gotten better ever since I became a regular (addicted) reader of this blog, I’m sticking to it and by effect, you, like Superglue :)
        (Mind the lame pun lol)

        Club level gave me a very VERY welcome insight into how the rich and afluent watch our beloved Arsenal but there’s nothing like being down there with the average gooner, singing your heart and lungs out in the North Bank or wherever you may sit :)

        And tbh you’re right, the Marseille game was a bit drab, no doubt you would of produced a quality piece if you had written one. Ramsey could of won it for us but you take what you can get in all aspect of life lol.

        Last thing from me, the wait only makes the eventual reading of the blog oh so sweeter… ;)

        Reply

  3. hasan
    2178 days ago

    song did not play last year vs wba because he was suspended diaby played

    Reply

    • Alan
      2178 days ago

      Check the link, mate.

      Reply

  4. Girl Gunner
    2178 days ago

    Sian.. First of all, read you’ve been nominated for a blogs award, if so, then congrats,u totally deserve to win that :)

    you’ve said it perfectly (love the mantra) sian, also atleast the hate has died down a bit and now are a much happier bunch..we may not win the trophy but we r far better off then anticipated at the start of season… Relegation, pssh…it seems they had forgotten, we r the one, the only, The Arsenal… :)

    Loved the Holy start, may He answer our prayers,God bless…Amen :) :)

    Reply

    • Sian
      2178 days ago

      If I have, it’s news to me! And haha indeed, amen!

      Reply

      • Girl Gunner
        2178 days ago

        Ohh, then I must have read wrong sorryz,anyway, u still deserve to win another award with this blog tho :)

        Reply

  5. Pablo
    2178 days ago

    Nice Read!
    COYG!

    Reply

  6. Paulo
    2178 days ago

    Sian, I’m totally Team Carl as well and he really has great crossing, as good as anyone in the country!
    And Ramsay’s pass made me go weak at the knees it was so good (blast you Alex for getting there ahead of me ;)
    Finally, RVP is so much more of a captain than Cesc ever was, lived Cesc he was quality but not a captain, I had my doubts about RVP at the beginning of the season I thought Wenger might go with Vermaelen (he was captain at Ajax) but he really has grown into it and is leading the team by example, what a hero!!

    Reply

    • Alex
      2177 days ago

      Lol Pablo, it was the first thing that came into my head, the collective intake of breath in the box yesterday after he released Walcott was inspiring, almost as much as the finish :)

      Reply

    • Alex
      2177 days ago

      Dude, I’m so sorry for spelling your name wrong and mixing you up with ‘Pablo’, I’m mortified. :(

      Only one inital in the form of ‘u’ between your two names but I must of been looking at his post when responding to yours.

      Many apologies, your fellow gooner Alex.

      Reply

  7. abhinav
    2178 days ago

    Ah two weeks wait will be long wait.Great to see our team in sublime touch.Arteta goal was a typical Arsenal goal , we are evolving as a unit now.

    Reply

    • Paulo
      2177 days ago

      Yes indeed! Arteta has been somewhat subdued by his own standards but that was a really good goal and hopefully he’ll start to feel he belongs and deserves to be in this team because he is class

      Reply

  8. irishgray
    2177 days ago

    Sian – Well worth the wait and great write up as always. Fully agreed with regards to Jenks, he is playing very well and is what, all of 19? It was also great to have TV back and scoring!! Just read JW’s comments where he said he would love to stay at The Arsenal for his entire career, how awesome is that? Of course now we have a stoooooooopidsillyboringcrappy international break to deal with before we can get back to watching how the game should be played but fingers crossed the entire squad can come back healthy for once. Hope uni is not kicking your ass entirely Sian and that it is going well for you. Enjoy the break from the blog as much as you can as the fixturs are going to be coming thick and fast between now and X-mas! :) COYG!!!!!!

    “And I wasn’t even wearing red!!” – Still cracks me up!!!

    Reply

  9. 1NilToTheArsenal
    2176 days ago

    When I was in my 3rd year of uni, I had ALL KINDS of time (begs the question of how I got into graduate school) but I would never have put in the quality of this kind of writing for what is essentially a hobby, no matter how passionate.

    Well done, again. If you want a job this side of the Atlantic, call me. Until then, as a collection of Gooners who follow this blog we can be nothing less than proud and happy that we do indeed seem to be coming together as a team and bringing in the kind of results that are worthy of our storied club.FINALLY.

    Finally, I felt totally comfortable watching an Arsenal match. Finally, I had real confidence in our defense. Finally, I really felt that we had climbed out of the deep hole into which we’d dug ourselves.

    Step by step, and very much in keeping with Wenger’s philopsy and style we are FINALLY becoming the Arsenal once again.

    1NTTA

    Reply

  10. Alan
    2176 days ago

    You’re on form again, bird, just like our team. If those boys in red and white could somehow achieve the level of consistent ‘highness’ as your blogs, we’d win the lot.

    Reply

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