If you follow the Arsenal regularly, you will find some recurring themes. These were evident in today’s match against Liverpool:
Poor defending: So far this season, the Gunners have allowed 38 goals (twice the number allowed by Man City). Even 15th place Aston Villa have allowed fewer goals (35) than us. But thanks to the combined efforts of Man-of-the-Match Wojciech Szczesny and the Inanimate-objects-of-the-Match goal posts, we escaped the first half with a 1-1 score. I was hoping that our opponents would be suffering from a Carling Cup hangover, but that was not the case. Liverpool could have easily scored 3 or 4 goals, as Luis Suárez had his way with our defenders.
Countless injuries: We currently lead the league in injuries (12), the most recent being Gibbs, Benayoun, Diaby, and Arteta from today’s game. They will join the following players at our state-of-the-art Medical Centre: Djourou, Ramsey, Squillaci, Coquelin, Mertesacker, Frimpong, Santos, and Wilshere. By the way, Manchester City have 0.
Goal to van Persie, assisted by Alex Song: For a holding midfielder, Song has made some pretty nice forward passes to set up our lone Gunman. Today’s assist will end up on many highlight reels. Here are some video clips from the current season:
“Arsène Knows Best” versus “In Arsène We Rust”: There have always been a contingent of fans who would like to replace Arsène Wenger with [insert a famous manager's name here]. Since we lost the Carling Cup final last year, the anti-Wenger camp has gained momentum. It seems that every tactical decision is scrutinized, and each time we lose a game, the knee-jerk response is to fire Wenger. I’ve been in the AKB camp since I started following the club in 2002, so perhaps I’m a bit biased. But we’ve qualified for the Champions League every year since 1998-99, and if Sp**s lose tomorrow, we’ll be a mere 4 points from third place. We’ve gotten this far without Fabregas, Nasri, and Wilshere. Who else (besides Ferguson) has demonstrated such consistency in recent memory?
Team spirit: Even when we’re down a couple of goals, the team never quits. Szczesny made a brilliant save on Dirk Kuyt’s penalty, and turned away the rebound. Time and time again, the Gunners have come from behind to steal a result. The only problem is, time and time again we find ourselves in this position.
But here’s something new: we won a game that we didn’t deserve to win. As WS13 and AW confessed to the BBC, we were lucky to win: We were heading for a 1-1 draw into extra time, but we had a full 8 minutes to pull one more rabbit out of the hat. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain also could have scored in the 97th minute, assist from RVP, but his shot just curled wide.
Does this mean we can beat AC Milan 5-0 on Tuesday? I don’t know, but it should be an entertaining match, regardless of the result. COYG