FA Premiership, April 28th: Stoke City 1-1 Arsenal
Sunday morning, day of rest greetings, various peoples.
I’ve got to be honest and say I’m a little disappointed today. I really wanted to get three delicious points at Stoke. Thankfully, Wigan’s recent impressive resurgence continued and they thumped Newcastle, so a meagre point isn’t at all bad in the grand scale of things. Third place still remains entirely in our own hands.
The match yesterday was what you’d expect from a trip to the Britannia Stadium; a hostile environment and an opposing eleven comprising of hackers and thugs. You could see from the moment the game kicked off, they intended to use old-fashioned intimidation tactics to throw us of our game.
To our credit, we weren’t as affected by it as we have been in the past. We had opportunities to win the game, and were it not for Gervinho’s profligacy, we certainly would have. I like the Ivorian, he has pace and enthusiasm. If he could just put a consistent end product into his game, he’d become a real handful and a very valuable asset. Something for him to work on in the summer.
Once Robin had cancelled out Crouch’s opener having been set up by a nice combination between Benayoun and Rosicky, I thought we’d go on and win it. The match sort of petered out a bit, and barring the occasional Delap-inspired scare late on, we didn’t look at all uncomfortable. With two games to go, and four points separating us and Newcastle, the positives to be taken from a draw against relatively lowly opponents are simply that we didn’t lose any ground to those chasing us. At this stage, that’s all I care about.
After the game, Arsene Wenger had a few words to say regarding the cacophonous abuse he and Aaron Ramsey – who had a solid game – recieved from the Stoke supprters:
“I focus on what I love in my job, which is football and the way my players behave on the pitch. I’m not responsible for the way people behave in the stands. If you want to stop that, it’s easy to stop. You can isolate every single face.
“I think sometimes when I go out on the pitch at the end of the game, and people are angry or hateful, I would like a little picture to send home for them to show their son or daughter, and then come back next week and see if they will do it again, see if they are proud of you.”
“I don’t think you can be especially proud to boo Aaron Ramsey, I don’t see what he has done wrong.
Well, he did have the audacity to have his leg broken by lovely, not-at-all-like-that, poor, sweet, innocent Ryan Shawcross on the Stoke turf. Honestly, what was he thinking? Of course, with the above comments, slimey and moronic as ever, Tony Pulis chimed in with his two-pennies wirth:
“I was more concerned about the Arsenal supporters booing Shawcross so I didn’t hear the ones on Ramsey.”
Seriously? Fuck off… Of course we boo him. He’s a thuggish idiotic without a degree of common sense who broke a young man’s leg in two. He deserves it. As for Ramsey, he deserves none of the above. He’s hardly at fault for being the victim of someone’s actions. Pulis, you truly are a stubborn and breathtakingly stupid man.
In oter news, Theo should make a recovery from injury in plenty of time to make England’s squad for Euro 2012. Good news for him.
That’s all for today folks. I’m back tomorrow with another interview for you to get your peepers round. Pedro from Le Grove has been kind enough to answer a few questions for me, and it’s a good read.
Thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards. Take a moment to comment with your views on the game, and follow my Twitter account @_ArmchairGooner