Before I begin, let’s all collectively take a moment to bask in glory.
Ahhh, the sweet smell of victory in the North London derby. Feels f**king great, doesn’t it. I have to admit that I was quite nervous during the hours that lead up to the game. Usually a sturdy and reliable organ, my bladder suffered from temporary weakness and most of my innards followed suit. Before kick-off, my humble abode was a cacophony of curious gurgles of the stomach, feet thundering towards the lavatory and explosive flatulence.
However, as soon as that whistle blew and the game began, the tension disappeared. Spurs created very little. Aside from a reasonable chance for Eriksen and a prime example of Adebayor’s propensity for a bandy-legged lack of grace in the penalty area, our scummy visitors offered no threat. You’ll here cries of “we had a weakened team” from their supporters, but such remarks are weak excuses. Arsenal had many key players unavailable for the game, and chose to rest a few that were available. Given Tottenham have spent in excess of £100m building a squad makes that statement all the more laughable.
Arsenal controlled the game and looked far more threatening when attacking. Before Santi Czorla’s thunderbolt capped off a fine bit of play from Serge Gnabry with the opener, we had had a couple of good chances to open the scoring. From that moment on, I didn’t doubt the outcome of the game.
The second goal was a delicious cherry on a delightful victory cake. And I couldn’t have been happier for Rosicky scoring it, along with the fact he left feckless no-mark Danny Rose with egg on his face in the process. As Tomas scampered toward goal and chipped the onrushing Lloris, the smile beaming across my face was a sight to behold. I simply love Tomas Rosicky to bits.
He was by some distance my MOTM yesterday. Every player in red and white contributed to an excellent performance in some way, and all deserve high marks and limitless praise for the committed and professional manner in which they set about their tasts. But Rosicky wins it for me. When you look at his drive, his enthusiasm, his skill and his will to harass opponents, you’d be forgiven for thinking he’s a 25-year-old in the prime of life. When you take into account he’s 33 and in the winter of his career, his exploits on the pitch become immeasurably more impressive.
Perhaps his lengthy spell on the sidelines with injury has enabled him to prolong his career. I often feel slightly upset when I look at his time at Arsenal as it’s easy to wonder how good he could have been for us had those ailments not occurred. However, maybe such things are meant to be, and the player we could have had is the one we are seeing now. His contract expires over the summer, and I sincerely hope it is extended. His attitude and performances have shown how much he has to offer, and particular note should be made of his constant words of encouragement for young Gnabry and the friendly arm around the shoulder.
Yesterday, we played very well. Arsenal have picked up results in recent weeks without especially dominating teams or performing near to the levels we know they are capable. Against Spurs, the whole team performed well. From Fabianski in goal who didn’t put a foot wrong all the way to Theo’s bustling and enthusiastic shift in the central strikers role, it was a joy to behold and another confident step forwards in a season that is beginning to promise a little glory at the end.
And if all of that wasn’t enough, the aforementioned Mr Walcott gave us an extra special little treat whilst being stretchered off. Having endured all kinds of witless opprobrium for the Spurs section of the crowd whilst down injured in front of them – including fabulously articulate insults such as “we hope that he dies” – Theo, with a wonderfully smug grin on his face, decided now would be an excellent time to remind them what the score was as he was carried away to be treated.
Some have claimed he incited the crowd, others, like the always f**king sensationalist and stupid Daily Mail, claimed that his gesture “soured” the entire game. As far as I’m concerned, football is abut banter. You give it, you receive it. Had the roles been reversed, there isn’t a single Spurs fan out there who wouldn’t have enjoyed the moment as we did. If the FA wish to punish anyone, perhaps they should aim their guns towards those making sickening remarks and throwing coins, not the player who responded with a smile and a harmless gesture.
And before anyone calls me a hypocrite – yes, I would condemn the Arsenal fans who threw coins at Adebayor when he ran the length of The Etihad pitch to celebrate in front of them just the same. Remember, we have a statue outside our ground of Thierry Henry doing the exact same thing. You give it out, you have to be able to receive it.
That’s all for today, folks. I hope you’ll head towards the comments section to revel in the victory with your fellow fans. Tell me a few of your highlights and stand out performances. I’ve not touched on how excellent Gnabry and Cazorla were yesterday, or Mikel Arteta’s overlooked, but very impressive, display holding the midfield. What are your thoughts? Let me know a few.
I shall return tomorrow. Enjoy the day and keep an eye on the draw for the FA Cup fourth round at 4pm (GMT). As always; thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.