May 5, 2015

Twenty Years On The Trot

By Michael Clements

It is indeed true, we can't smile without Tottenham. Arsene Wenger has never allowed Sp*rs to finish above his Arsenal team, which I wish I could say was an impressive feat, but we're (un)fortunate enough to have a lower quality team as our North London rivals which makes this par for the course. I do wonder, however, if the Frenchman would trade that particular statistic for just one win against the utter knob end who some call Mourinho. 

The way we dispatched of The Hull Tigers made the day even more enjoyable. Commentator, Martin Tyler said it best when he stated that it was dangerous to allow Arsenal to enjoy themselves. Hull came out slow, always a step behind. Arsenal had the hustle, the desire and most evidently the speed. It might have seemed as if Hull were nipping at our ankles, but I think it was just down to the fact they were just not quick enough to the tackle. Once the Gunners found their rhythm it was never going to be a fun day for the majority of the KC Stadium.

A couple of dramatic deflections went our way, to say the least, but it wasn't against the run of play by any means. By half time Alexis, Rambo then Alexis again put us 3-0 up and it was a deserved scoreline. While Steve Bruce thought his side won the second half - having perhaps forgotten that his team got played off the park the previous 45 minutes - Arsenal never looked like letting their lead slip. One of the many things this Arsenal team has impressed this season is the closing out of games. Granted, we had a two goal lead even after their consolation goal, but the way we shut them down and limited their chances without having to scramble was something we wouldn't have achieved last term. 

Perhaps one of my favourite things about this club is the class that oozes out of every nook and cranny. Tottenham made it clear at the beginning of the season (and last season, and the one before that) that is was their time to surpass the more superior team on Seven Sisters Road. The number of transfers over the last few seasons does show a glimpse of ambition, but it absolutely reeks of desperation. Millions of pounds have been flung this way and that to try and land players who'll play for a 6th place team, almost replacing their entire squad in the space of two seasons. 

Arsenal, however, quietly (sometimes too quietly!) go about their business, bring in a couple of key signings and have made strides in the quality of our football since last season. While there are a lot of things that frustrate us with the way this club operates from the inside, at the end of the day look around at our rivals - Arsenal Football Club is run the right way. There has been a certain level of underachievement over the past few years, but I think we can really be pleased with what's unfolded this season. There are still five games to play before our boys take a well deserved holiday, but so far so good.

Ooh To Be A Gooner!