Some days you go to bed tired, disappointed and disillusioned, only to wake up with a new sense of hope and hunger for elation. Sleep can do magic and there is always hope.
The very publicly staged Brentford defeat last Friday was a big shock to the system but the response to it has been, albeit it understandable, disproportionate.
One game when things didn’t go our way, and all the dormant fears and ugliness roared to the surface again.
It could get even more ugly on Sunday, and it pains me that Arteta is given so little support at this early stage of the season, after such a great run since Christmas.
He is building something firm and ultimately beautiful and we run the risk of perpetually replacing our football architects before they have given the light of day to their passionate projects.
My parents saved enough money to leave our council estate and build their own home some how, back in the eighties. I still remember looking at the rain covered, bare foundations layed out in front of me and walking on it, thinking how is this ever going to become our house. It takes imagination, everything which needs building does. It also needs looking up and not just down.
Arteta is reintroducing our passing game fit for this era. It’s a huge task. Footballers need to be able to receive the ball in tight spaces and not lose it, deal well with pressure, work their socks off and look up when they are playing, etc. It’s not easy to establish.
So many of the squad under Mikel struggle(d) with this, and they just had to go, or indeed still have to. The foundation is nearing its completion and now it is time to start imagining what Arteta’s Home of Arsenal Football will really look like.
I invite you to imagine with me and look beyond the proverbial shower of one or two early defeats, and get a Gaudy-esque house in your mind.
Here is my dream lineup:
RWB* – Holding – White – Big G – Tierney
— Partey or Xhaka – – –
Saka – – – Ode – – – ESR
——- Laca/Pepe ** – – – — – – –
I like White to play in the middle of a back three, push forward regularly and support the lone deeper midfielder.
ESR, Saka and Ode (if indeed he joins us) are all big Arteta players. They don’t ask what their specialised position is, they can play almost everywhere.
Tierney is an Arteta player, Ramsdale will become one (if he joins), Holding and Big Gab are Arteta players, Xhaka has always been one, Partey too.
** Pepe is a work in progress and may still become an AP. Laca is an Arteta player if his heart is in it. We could still need an addition here. If Auba, not an AP because of his limited passing skills, leaves this may still happen before the TW shuts.
- The right wing back position remains a question mark for me. Soares and Chambers are more back up players than first choice. Bells doesn’t cut the mustard for me, but they will do for now.
It may not be exactly the above line up and formation, but I don’t think it will be far off Arteta’s House either.
It could become something very beautiful and fit for a decade with a bit of patience.
But what is your ‘dream house’?