Whilst keeping up with the game yesterday, there was a period where I began to seriously consider the negative impact on Arsenal my blogging return might have had. Not being the superstitious type, I quickly put that to bed, but feared a chorus of abuse from those of you kind enough to point out the team’s good fortune in my absence.
Thankfully today, we don’t have to sour the atmosphere with grumbling and squabbling. Arsenal, as is so often the case, do enjoy putting us through the ringer and making mountainous peaks out of relatively passable molehills. Yet we sit gloriously, if temporarily, in third place above Spurs and Chelsea with our positional destiny placed firmly in our own hands.
Once Norwich took an undeserved lead in the 55th from what I can only describe as a typically Arsenal concession; ball in box, shit marking, lump of a centre half scores, the world became a bleak and inhospitable place. Social networks were filled with usually erudite and verbose Gooners spewing out obscenities. It would appear that with opportunity beckoning us inside for a warm cup of tea and a crumpet, we’d decided we’d sooner blunder about the wilderness in the cold.
We all know the drill, don’t we. Supporting Arsenal isn’t exactly tedious. There is no such thing as a routine victory and you can never quite know what to expect. The varying emotions of an Arsenal supporter during 90 minutes of game time must cover every degree imaginable. Yet, with all the hullabaloo and maddeningly unpredictable events, we won. When all the dust settles, nothing else matters.
We didn’t see a rousing performance. At times, it was achingly dull and lacking imagination. However, I often take great heart from the apparent fighting spirit in the team. Our current squad might lack the exuberence of The Invincibles, but you can see there’s a fight to them, and for all their critics and all the moaners, you can see it does matter.
By the time Arteta tucked away – just – a hotly disputed penalty – I don;t think there can be too many complaints from Norwich, the replays clearly show Giroud’s shirt practically being torn off his back – we’d built up a head of steam and went for the jugular. Sometimes I think it might be easier to give our opponents a 1/2 goal lead from the outset, as it seems we don’t really know how to apply pressure and perform unless we’re losing.
Some may disagree, but Giroud’s winner from a lovely bit of twinkle-toed play from Oxlade Chamberlain was the correct outcome to a game that shouldn’t really have been in doubt. Podolski’s late drive was merely the icing on the cake – a cake that started out bitter of taste, but finally became sweet and quite delightful.
After the game, Arsene had these words to say:
“We have a target, to win one game after another.
“Today was very important for us. We have another big target on Tuesday, and let’s continue with the same attitude. We have a chance to get there.”
That’s all we can ask from the players. Like them, us fans are best to take things one game at a time. It might not be pretty, it might not be smooth sailing, but if we win our remaining games in the same manner as yesterday, I’ll be happy once the season finishes. Drained, greying, haggard, distressed and fatigued, but happy.
That’s all for today, folks. What were your views on the game? The comments below await all your opinions and thought in their unbridled glory. I look forward to reading some of the,.
I shall return with more tomorrow. Until then, thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.