Well, another football weekend has just concluded; one not as successful as the others. We lost the Emirates cup to Didier the drama queen but quite simply put, I do not care. I can’t sit here and deny that losing the cup, in our home turf to Galatasaray is not embarrassing, because it is. But to me that’s all it is, embarrassing. An ego check if you will.
In fact from the way I see things, I’m glad we did not win it.
There are plenty of positives that have come from this embarrassment. I have to warn you that this post will be a mildly controversial one but someone needs to tell things as they are.
The first and foremost is the ego check I mentioned earlier was well and truly due. We went to Asia and swept aside every team we met there. We scored 16 goals in 3 games and the squad built up its confidence, which is a good thing. But I got the feeling that going into the cup, we were a tad overconfident. The players were even unusually vocal about all matters Arsenal. We didn’t win a single game in this tournament, and let me remind you that Napoli and Gala are very second rate teams. I’m quite happy about it, because while confidence is good, overconfidence is self destructive. Especially when you aren’t as good as you think we are.
To build on to the point above, the results of the weekend were a sobering reminder to the team that the champions league qualifier we are to play holds a very real chance of early elimination. Now this wouldn’t just be embarrassing, this would be catastrophic. Thing is, the kind of competition we will be up against will be more or less of the caliber of our Emirates cup opponents. More or less. What’s more encouraging (for me at least) is that Wenger looked visibly shaken when asked about the qualifier following the weekends results. He didn’t answer with his usual tone of confidence and belief. Now don’t get me wrong, all yesterday’s loss is, is a timely reminder that we have to work hard to achieve results and there is no place for complacency if we are to move forward as a club.
Then there’ are the performances of some of our first-teamer: Giroud, Ramsey and Gibbs specifically. Let me be the first to point out that there is a real hunger in this squad. Even journalists, like John cross who has handled our full preseason, have picked up on this. But there are certain players who are taking this hunger to a whole new level and are looking like stepping things up several notches. The three above are the players I have in mind. Along with Rosicky, Ox, Per and Bac. Their performances over the whole pre-season have shown that they are ready to earn their keep. They have shown a fighting spirit that considering these were just friendlies, is very encouraging. We will definitely need this if we are to have the kind of start we desire.
Finally (on this) I think that based on these results, Wenger has a clearer picture of where he needs to strengthen the team. I really won’t go into details because my opinion and Wenger’s may or may not align and it is his that matters. That said, I think the Emirates cup has exposed some of our weaknesses which over the next few weeks would need to be ironed out before we go into the new campaign. This can’t be anything but good.
In other news, Chamakh is finally leaving!! And so is Gervinho. At this point it doesn’t matter what your opinion of the Ivorian is because what’s done is done.He’s having his medical at Roma so the only thing to do now is thank him for his contribution at Arsenal and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.
Further on the subject of departures, Bendtner still has no takers. This is a bit ironical because for a player who thinks he is a Ballon D’or candidate, no one wants him. His agent said that 5 teams wanted him, so my question is what happened? I understand that he keeps disagreeing with clubs over his wages. Someone really needs to tell him that he isn’t even half the player he thinks he is.
To conclude this post, I have to point out that booing Higuain was very classless. I found that rather crude and uncalled for, not even taking into consideration the circumstances of his transfer. We are better than that gooners!!!!
Written by: Marcus