Now humming the Champions League Hymn………can you hear the sound? Can you?
Strangely but in a good way we go into the last games of the season not under as much pressure to pull a result like we have in more recent seasons where qualification for the Champions League was left till the last game. The way this season has gone it would have been nice to see how the players would have reacted to pressure in the last four games of the season if we were still in with a shout to win the league.
‘Not so far off but still not close enough’ has to be the phrase that captures our season as Arsenal fans. So we go into the game against WBA knowing a win would guarantee us some Tuesday and Wednesday football while our neighbours who have invested money enough to build some stadiums in their squad still only get SpursDay matches as usual.
Completely agree with @fkhanage there, it’s easy to write off finishing fourth and qualifying for Europe because it has become routine but you take a look at how much Liverpool have invested just to get into the Champions League places and compete for the league, Spurs outspend us almost every season and still can’t get in with the consistency that we do. So it has nothing to do with spending money, but rather how you spend it and manage the resources that you currently have. If Atletico Madrid has shown us anything with their performances over the last 3 seasons, it’s exactly that.
I am in no way saying fourth place should be an acceptable position year in year out but I don’t subscribe to the school of thought either that should we have finished outside it a few times in the last years it would have forced to club to change its methods. For starters I don’t think players of the quality of Ozil would even listen to us if we didn’t have Champions League to dangle in front of them.
The premier league is a hard competition and money invested by teams above us and those directly underneath us make it even the more harder, the truth is we are never ever going to outspend City or Chelsea, aside from the fact that we have a model that doesn’t allow it, I don’t think we even have the resources even if we wanted to.
This season I believe if anything shows that we are not far off, we just need to be more purposeful with the way we approach the transfer market and Wenger needs to find a different approach to games against the top sides in the league. Should we have picked at least 4 points from this shameful United side and beaten any of Swansea ,Villa or Everton at home we would have still being in the hunt for this title at this stage but for now we would have to accept UCL qualification and a chance to win the FA Cup.
Andrea bocelli – time to say goodbye now playing in my head….
It’s our last home game of the season and there surely is an air of goodbyes ringing around this one. For players like Fabianski, Viviano, Kim Kalstrom, Bendtner (fuck him), and most importantly Bacary Sagna it’s the last time they are likely to wear the Arsenal jersey again. For Sagna especially who has been a very consistent player for the club, I am not pretty comfortable with our inability to reach an agreement with him.
Sagna is a lovely defender, excellent at left back, lovely as centre back and willing to put in a shift as right back once in a while, it’s just sad to see him go. I feel as a club we let some our experienced heads go too early, we should have gotten a few more years from Petit, Overmars, Pires, Viera and we are about to do same with Sagna. My biggest worry is not even letting Sagna go, it’s who we get in as replacement and the club hasn’t done anything to make us trust it with getting in the right quality to fill in positions.
We have been in need of a striker for three transfer windows and have been unable to get one in, I sincerely hope there is some negotiation to bring someone and quickly too. Jenkinson is not the answer yet, and I hope Wenger won’t dilly-dally on this position and with a few days to the end of the window promote Hector Bellerin from the youth team and try to convince us that Jenkinson is the best thing since man invented Coca-Cola like he attempted to with Niklas Bendtner when the Demba Ba deal didn’t go through.
“He had nearly gone somewhere else [in August] and in the end he stayed because it didn’t work out and we needed him here,””Now he can convince everybody. We are open-minded, we believe in his qualities. I personally believe in his qualities. It’s just down to attitude and fighting [spirit]. When he has that, Nicklas can be an unstoppable striker. He gets his chance. Our job is about that. Take your chance.
I guess we can all agree that the club should have known better than expect anything short of newspaper headlines from Bendtner and we are not talking football related headlines. While the other expected departures from the first team squad might not be as harmful, we would still need to replace the spaces they leave behind especially the goalkeeper. Do we get an experienced hand that would do a good job in the cups or a young hungry keeper that would give Wojciech Szczesny a run for his place in the team is a decision the club needs to make soon.
We did the job effectively against Hull and Newcastle and one would expect that we would remain on that level against West Brom. It’s not a coincidence that this has happened with the return of Ozil and Ramsey. No need crying over split milk of what the effect would have been if we would have had them play together for much longer and Theo on the wings. Oh well! We pray for better luck with the injuries next season.
I wonder with Champions league qualification in the bag now if the manager might change focus to the FA Cup final and start resting some of his star players but Wenger being the kind of man he is I believe would want to finish as close to the leaders as he can and hence I don’t expect wholesale changes to the match day squads for our last two games.
So, 3 points in the bag today should be a great way to start the week and we draw closer to the FA Cup title. Have a good day friends and best of luck to Bacary Sagna anywhere he decides to continue his career.
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