We are in a collective state of dashed hopes, fans and players alike. It is a dangerous place to be in at this juncture where time is most unforgiving of any error. We have to find a way to pick ourselves up immediately, to stave off the dreaded Thursday-Night-Football now beckoning. Heaven forbid that it happens. To pull oneself out of its quagmire is no mean task. Even the bulging pockets of Manchester United are desperately struggling to do that, what less poor Liverpool. Watch and see the monstrous amount of money that Chelsea will be begging to splash this summer to attract “world class” players to help reinstate them at the top, with nothing guaranteed. Guaranteed, however, is that Neymer would not join them, as he loves the world stage of Champions league football. With all their money, Chelsea would be shopping for the left overs. I tell you my fear.
Arsenal is a very patient club. I once told a friend of mine that one area I know for certain that Wenger is far more endowed than me is in his patience. 10 years have passed yet Walcott has not learnt the simple drop of the shoulder, and Wenger is still sticking with him. Inexhaustible must be his patience, and that is exactly why I dread a drop to the Europa League. If we do drop, our football administrators would draw up a 10 year sustainable model for getting us back into the Champions League. That would kill me and as you can guess I don’t want to die yet.
We ain’t dropping, Gunners.
How do we begin to save ourselves from the 10 year exile. Simply by getting up and taking the first step so the other steps could follow. All of us are so full of complaints on the lack of leadership on the field. That’s pure pontificating, when you consider that outside the field where we belong there is no leadership. Go to the stands, and tell me how many people are shouting themselves hoarse urging the boys on. Isn’t that what leadership is all about? Probably it is only recognized when it comes out of the throat of Per Mertersacker. No, 60 thousand throats are way, way more effective in galvanizing the team. The fans have abdicated their responsibility to the team and we need to remind ourselves that our duty is to lift up the boys when they are down, so that up, they in turn would get us lifted.
Our voices should inspire their play, which then returns to us, gladdening our hearts in that beautiful world of healthy symbiotic relationship. The left hand washing the right hand, and the right the left. But instead we travel the selfish route. We want to take never to give, parasite-like. We want them to lift us, and when they are unable to do so and instead are begging for our support, we turn against them. What treachery! Not only from the stands, but also from the fans in cafes, in tube stations, in the voices of ex Arsenal this, ex Arsenal that, that find their way to the tabloids.
Who is the Tony Adams in Bergkampesque et al. I will tell you. It should be you and I. We all are the 12th man on the field. It is our arm that ought to wear the captain’s armband and our voices the leadership that every team craves for. One game at a time. Thursday night is our next match. It is a home match against West Brom. Signs are that there would be many empty seats at the Emirates. Those seats belong to the faint-hearted, the fair weather fans and the boo boys hopefully. We are neither going to miss them Thursday night nor forever more. West Brom lie in wait. If we would have succeeded in putting the captain’s band round the arm of the 12th man, they would be shocked at who would turn up. Have you noticed a common trait in the top, top class strikers? When they miss a sitter they let it go immediately. They temperamentally understand that the past can only be a drag. They also know that they would bury the next opportunity. So Ibrahimovic remains Ibrahimovic the goal merchant, Aguero remains Aguero, and Romario remains Romario. They live in the NOW and in the hope of tomorrow.
We have missed a sitter, the Premiership crown (though not yet mathematically). We have to let it go, so that we like Ronaldo(C7) and Ronaldo the Phenomenon, can bury the very next chance that comes our way. By the way, that stuff making the airwaves that we lost our opportunity this season of winning the premiership is pure illogicality. Who decreed that it was our opportunity. First of all, Leicester is headed at current pace to a no mean 82pts finished. We all hate this, but did you see the outstanding Spurs whip Chelsea at Stamford Bridge? It takes courage to give to those two teams what is theirs, and give it to them we must. Secondly, isn’t this so called “our opportunity” also not Man U’s opportunity to win it after having invested a zillion pound for that prize over the past few seasons? Same for the oil billionaires Man C. And how could Liverpool have also missed such an opportunity? They only needed to stay ahead of Leicester and Tottenham. Most miserable of all, the reigning champions Chelsea threw away their opportunity to retain the crown.
What balderdash all these airways stuffs about our opportunity. Every new season is every team’s opportunity even if its odds are 5000:1. I know some would come up with the argument that the opportunity is ours because we haven’t won it for so long. In line with that argument Liverpool have a greater claim to the opportunity. So also Newcastle and Aston Villa. But there again, the round leather game says its emotions is in the NOW and in the promise of tomorrow. Whether it is 13 seasons ago or one season ago, the past, though not stinking, is already dead and long, long gone. Ask a Chelsea fan, the current champion, how it feels to be languishing in the nadir region. I mean languishing. One game at a time.
Our NOW starts with joy that our rival Man C lost 2 pts last night to relegation strugglers. And in that NOW also our hope that tomorrow night West Brom be received by a nasty Emirate host. COYG.
By Pony Eye.