Arsenal needs to lay a huge Marker ! – Chelsea Preview

I’ve waited 6 months for this day!

6 long hard months, waiting, cursing, waiting and cursing some more for the day when we return to the ground were the humiliation we felt was deep, really deep. Listening to podcasts you can tell for Arsenal fans born and bred in the United Kingdom, the game against Spurs, rather ‘Spuds” (Spurs is more San Antonio Spurs the basketball team not our shitty neighbours) seems to be the one that evokes the most passion, for us Arsenal fans in Nigeria it really doesn’t connect the same way as hating Spuds is inherited while our dislike for Chelsea and Chelsea fans we developed ourselves.

This is the analogy, growing up basically with the explosion of the Premier League in Nigeria, fans connected to the two major clubs in England. Manchester United and Arsenal, I went the Arsenal route because of Ian Wright. Then Kanu Nwankwo joined Arsenal and there was an explosion of Arsenal fans in Nigeria but the Man United fans were already pretty proud and established.

A combination of factors led to the huge amount of Chelsea fans we have in Nigeria now, firstly cable TV became cheaper and there was an explosion of premier league viewing centers all across the country, this coincided with Roman buying Chelsea and the nearly instant success that came with it. Kanu left Arsenal and so did his many followers that moved on to the next big thing. So cheap TV, money at Chelsea and Kanu’s departure created this problem we currently have to live with. I listen to a lot podcasts over the years and the picture painted of Chelsea fans and how “gruel” they are is nothing compared to their vociferous, crazily annoying demeanor in Nigeria.

So I decided to run a quick poll during the week on which game Arsenal fans in Nigeria felt most passionately about and the result showed that my little lesson in history above is not wrong. Man United featured strongly because they are eternal rivals and Chelsea won marginally.

poll

*apologies cant seem to get this to render properly on mobile device so please click pic to see a clearer view

41 Votes in total : Arsenal vs Chelsea (20 votes)

Arsenal vs Manchester United (19 votes)

Arsenal vs Tottehham : 2 pts

The buzz around the game itself has been pretty quiet by recent standards as there doesn’t seem to be any verbal spat between Wenger and “Moanrinho”. Much of the news has been centered around “the one that got away’ , you very well know who that is Chelsea seem to be the bookmakers favourites for the title as they look like a very oiled machine with their manager doing some really good business in the transfer window especially casting away the spirit of Torres from their attack.

Good piece of business in the transfer window is not a phrase that can be used to describe how Arsene handled his business and the results are currently evident to see as the team is down to bare bones in defence with fewer than 10 games gone in the premier league season.  All the anger from the fans after the draw to Spurs seemed to have decimated with the performance against Galatasary at midweek. That’s how feeble fans are now, everything is decided in the short term, it’s almost like Arsenal fans are always 90minutes every weekend from a meltdown.

The game against Chelsea will be tough and going into it on the back of a derby win and a scintillating performance in Europe would have been ideal however we go there undefeated in the league this season and hopefully the lads will go out there with that in mind. A key determinant would be how Wenger shapes his team for this encounter and analyzing how the manager puts out his team has never been discussed as much as it now. We conducted on a poll before the season what Arsenal fans desired for Wenger to pay more attention to this season and I was surprised ‘Formation’ didn’t come tops especially after how we were dismantled during our travels to top clubs last season.

 

poll3

 

*apologies cant seem to get this to render properly on mobile device so please click pic to see a clearer view

Listening to Tim Stillman on Arsecast (podcast from Arseblog.com) speaking on how the change of personnel and formation by Wenger this season which is a huge variation from his very predictable line ups in the past is a good thing is an opinion I completely agree with.  I think it’s something to proud of to have Tim Stillman echo your thoughts to be honest but let’s leave that aside. What is key however is that Wenger deploys a tactic that can help us get a result at Stamford Bridge.

If its 4-5-1, 4-2-3-1 or a his recently developed 4-1-4-1 , I think what is important is how we get our best players on the pitch playing in their best positions that can cause the most damage to Chelsea while ensuring we do not crumble to the pace of their counter attacks. That seems easier to write down than actually do but that is why he is paid very well to have that headache.

Wenger really needs to do one over Jose and there is nowhere better to do it than on his porch. Lose this game and we are 9 points behind the leaders, win this and we are 3 points behind which is a very healthy position to be in. If you offer me a draw, honestly I’ll take it with arms wide open but like I have written so many times on this site, Arsenal fans are overdue a major victory away from home in the league and this would be a perfect place to lay a huge marker on whether we intend to compete this season or not.
I would really love us to win, and I want us to win with an offside goal so we don’t only take the 3 points back home, but we also cause them pain knowing they lost to something that shouldn’t have stood and it would annoy them the more for a very long period considering there are no games next weekend due to Internationals.  Enjoy the game and hopefully we are smiling at the end of it.

***I think I deserve some award from writing a Chelsea preview without making it about “the one that got away” ***

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2 thoughts on “Arsenal needs to lay a huge Marker ! – Chelsea Preview

  1. Adedamola

    You’re one of the heroes, thinking even for an instant that Wenger vs come up with the tactics and motivation to trump Mourinho. If after losing 5 and drawing 5 out of 10, he couldn’t come up with the tactics to stay in his 1,000th game for more than seven minutes, I see no reason why he’ll come up with the tactics now.

    1. SimonSEEZ Post author

      His actions this season has shown he is paying some attention to how the team shapes up. I really hope he does something in that regard today. If I were him, I would work towards just containing them in the first half and go for the game later on…we have to trust him, its not like we have another option

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