As humans it’s so easy for us to get used to a certain way of life. Earning minimum wage, things suddenly get better, and in a few months, your perception about everything changes. Football and Arsenal are part of our lives and it would be extremely difficult to find an Arsenal fan that has not gotten used to all the FA Cup trophy lifting ceremonies, the million smiley faces of players that spread across all of social media, the bus parades, the Spurs “Cunts” chants, the world class signings and pre-season trophy celebrations.
The whole buzz around the club is one of optimism and it is extremely infectious. It is easy to forget the perpetual moaning, weeping and gnashing of teeth that once where synonymous with the name Arsenal even by Arsenal fans. I am not a huge Facebook user anymore but I know they have this feature where they make a compilation of posts and pictures from you over a certain period into a short video. Imagine if Twitter adopted it, compiled and replayed tweets from four to five seasons ago. I don’t think they would make a good read except if you are in the Piers Morgan/Michael Owen category where there is a long history of being a cunt, where it’s now a norm.
A good norm however would be continuing in our new found love for lifting trophies by winning the Community Shield and ending our manager’s drought against the one that should never be named. Whilst everything we have done since we won the FA Cup in May can be wished away and rightly so with the “it’s only pre-season” statement, what you cannot wish away is the quality of the squad and the potential for success that is evident for everyone within and outside the club to see.
Perception however is a relative thing and it is largely dependent on the amount of information available to you, what Arsenal fans have seen for so many years has been different from what Wenger sees. While the manager sees a work in progress, we have always looked at the banner at the Emirates asking if we would ever see another year after 2005. Those doubts have been erased.
Sunday, however poses a different kind of challenge. A chance for a trophy aside; in a season where we feel that we can be genuine title contenders, we are playing the current Premier League Champions in a game to kick off the season, a team we have failed to beat in recent years, in a game where someone has to win knowing that the last time we beat Chelsea in a cup competition was in the 2002-2003 season in the FA Cup and first leg of our Champions League encounter. I feel there lies no better opportunity to send a message to them and by extension the rest of the premier league on our seriousness on winning the league but by winning this game.
The result in itself might have no bearing on how any of the clubs involved league form would be, but, however for us, it would be a massive weight lifted off the shoulders of the club, the manager and most importantly right now Petr Cech. Goalkeepers thrive on confidence just as much as attackers and I believe a victory over Chelsea with Cech in goal would give him and the whole club a massive boost. If I were in Wenger’s shoes, I would be tempted to give the captain’s armband to Cech for the day. An opportunity to lead the team out, win the game and show everyone he made the right career decision to join us, but I am not Wenger.
To be honest, I am a bit confused as to the importance of a community shield game, possibly due to the fact that I have not watched us play in many. I think its rating in the scale of trophies is lost somewhere between a pre-season cup and a Capital One Cup. It’s like the Super Cup, does anyone really care who wins that game? However, our current opponent surely does give the game an extra level of importance and it would be nice to see the team Wenger decides to start with. I feel it would be the closest to what would be our starting eleven.
Against Man City last year we started with Woj, Kos, Arteta, Debuchy, Chambers, Gibbs, Sanogo, Alexis, Wilshere, Ramsey and Cazorla. Bar Sanogo, that was a strong enough team. With Oxlade playing really well, it would be interesting to see what the manager does with Theo.
Playing with a few formations in my head
• Theo in the middle with Iwobi and Oxlade either side of him?
• Theo on the right, with Giroud down the middle and Oxlade on the left?
• Theo on the right, Giroud down the middle and Iwobi on the left?
• Ozil down the left, Theo or Giroud down the middle and Oxlade on the right which makes room for Arteta to play with Coquelin and Cazorla plays closer to the front three?
• Cazorla on the left, Giroud in the middle and Theo on the right?
All these twists and we do not have Sanchez, Welbeck or the yet to signed “30 goals a season, World Class Striker” in the mix. These indeed are happy times for Arsenal Football Club.
Whatever the manager decides to do with the team, I would hope he puts out a team capable and motivated enough to beat the team led by that filthy tongue wagging, foul-mouthed cunt faced Maureen.
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