February 2, 2015

Lovely Jubbly

By Michael Clements

See what happens when you introduce a couple of world class players back into the team, sprinkle some momentum in there and you've got a delightful dish of lusciousness a la Arsenal.

Arsenal put five past the less-than-convincing Aston Villa Sunday, all while keeping another clean sheet and it was impressive in more ways than one. Each goal was well worked, accentuating our ability to counter attack like the best of 'em. A mate of mine said how it reminded him of the Pires, Henry, Vieira teams that used to stream forward on the counter, shredding teams as they did so. Now, while those are some big names to compare this team to, maybe, just maybe we are starting to see the potential this group of talented individuals has.

Perhaps the brightest part of the day was seeing Walcott and Ozil, who have been out for very long periods (especially Theo) get back on the score sheet. More often than not, when a player comes back from an injury as serious as theirs, it takes a good few games to even get their feet back under them. Theo struggles a bit in his last couple of games, but he needed that goal against Villa. They both did. It shows their quality that they were able to return and contribute so soon, and even if they do drop of slightly while adapting back into Premier League life, I think it's clear that we've just re-gained two incredibly useful players going into the business end of the season. 

Matt LeTissier, formerly of Southampton and currently a knob, stated that he thought Mesut 'scuffed his shot'. If that's Ozil scuffing it, I can't wait until he gets a clean shot next time. While it looked like an awkward shot, I have no doubt that it was exactly what he intended to do - just out of Guzan's reach and into the far corner. Delightful, and very Ozil-esque. 

Walcott's goal was a beautiful one, coming after he intercepted a pass to Giroud and popped it deftly into the bottom corner. The French dreamboat, Giroud got our first, although it did look for a moment like he was going to lose the ball under himself, but he managed to chip in nicely over the Villa 'keeper after a trademark Ozil back heel pass. That pass though... if you didn't catch it, watch it here. 
And that's the special thing about Mesut Ozil. We can complain about him not tracking back to defend, or his seemingly lackadaisical movement around the pitch, but you can't argue with an assist and a goal, especially an assist of that quality. There's only a couple of players in the world that can pull that sort of move off.

Finally, let's talk about Alexis Sanchez F.C. 
Opposition fans and media seem to think that signing a player that is having the season of his life, while scoring a boat load of goals is a bad thing. I was under the impression that was the whole point of what we're doing here - to sign the best players available to be as successful as possible. Now, I completely understand that Sp*rs fans need help when reading and writing, but this tweet was seemingly spell checked and everything, yet still seems to be completely moronic. Laughable. Our biggest result of the season comes while our Chilean magic man sits in the stands. No disrespect to Alexis - I can't wait until he's back on the field, but it was nice to show that we don't just rely on one man. Our fluidity and cohesion has been questioned this season, so this result - a performance in which every single player played well, and for each other - was a perfect response. 

While I don't want us to get ahead of ourselves, I get that tingle in my balls that something is happening with this Arsenal team, something special. Confidence is building, momentum is gaining, players are coming back from injuries, we've made the necessary signings, all these things point towards us finishing this season in a strong way. I hope that tingle is a sign and not something more serious I should see someone about.

Victoria Concordia Cresit!