Tonight’s game is, predictably, being billed as Spuds’ chance to kick us in the ribs by handing the title to Chelski. Rubbish – it’s all about us coming second to secure qualify-free Champions League football, or Spuds cementing a UEFA Cup place. That’s what’s really at stake.
Not that it doesn’t have an extra frisson, I grant you. Small victory though it would be, I’d rather not watch our visitors enjoying themselves tonight. I think we can safely rule out 5-4, but I think it will be pretty close – a typical derby.
Of course, it’s revenge on a particularly small scale – a bit like last season, when their fans cavorted like they’d won the cup following our draw, as our fans celebrated winning the title. I never did quite get that.
Oddly enough, it was 25th April last year when we won at WHL, exactly a year ago. Spooky.
Anyway, if we fail to win the match tonight, Chelski will be crowned champions, making official what has been coming for several months. Now, if I were a Chelski fan – perish the thought – I’d want to win the title either A) At home, preferably, or failing that B) Away. As it stands, they could have it won without kicking a ball, which is less than satisfactory, for them. Not that I really care two hoots, but anyway.
Wenger looks set to retain the back four that has served us so well recently, meaning of course that Sol Campbell will not play again. Whoever thought he’d have to wait to get back into the team? Other absentees include Henry, Ljungberg, Clichy and Almunia.
Some congratulations: To Ashley Cole and Thierry Henry, both of whom made the PFA Team of the Season, and to the Arsenal Ladies, who won the league yesterday.
And so onto the main event…