Arsenal’s finger-lickin’ Kiev warm-up

Blackburn 0-4 Arsenal

Is there a better way to warm up for an arduous trip to the Ukraine than to thump Blackburn 4-0?

It’s funny, because you could argue 4-0 was generous to Arsenal; the last two goals were classic late game-killers and Blackburn caused our defence a fair amount of problems all day. And yet, had Walcott and in particular van Persie been a little more ruthless, we could in truth have scored even more.

Adebayor’s hat-trick made it two hat-tricks in a week for Arsenal players, and with van Persie contributing the other goal, our first-choice strike pair is settling nicely into its stride with seven goals in six games. We’re certainly a side with goals in us at the minute – our midfield is contributing well in that department too, with Denilson, Nasri and Walcott all having found the net this campaign. Only Fabregas – who was lethal at this stage last season – has not found the net yet but he has come into the season late anyway.

Hell, even Eboue’s looking alright, though his leggy tumble that won the penalty left him injured. It really could only happen to him.

What else? Well Ramsey’s late cameo earned him a neat assist, and Jack Wilshere became the youngest player ever to represent Arsenal in the league – pretty staggering really. If his path even vaguely follows that of Cesc Fabregas we are in for one hell of a player. And at a time when the general breadth of quality of English youngsters is a worry (and it genuinely is – who else Walcott’s age is knocking down the England door?) his emergence is exciting. One to watch for sure.

So it’s off to Kiev (a 2,660 mile round-trip) via Blackburn (500 miles) with a stop-off on the way home in Bolton (another 500 miles).

That’s a lot of miles in a week but it will feel worth it if we come out of it with similar results and performances to yesterday’s.

The sun has made an appearance in London – I’m really not joking – so to prevent the premature onset of SAD, I’m going to head outside and bask on a rock. If I can get my body temperature up a few degrees I might yet make it through the winter without crying.


Arsenal since about 1979. Thick, thin and all that.