â€œSol is not wellâ€ said Wenger after last nightâ€™s performance, and on that evidence, rather than berating him, you can only feel sorry for him. It was the performance of a defender at the bottom of his game, seemingly in decline, and heâ€™s clearly troubled by something more profound than injury at the moment.
â€˜Stam deserved to win for a committed display, but it was a game we would surely not have lost had he not gifted two goals to them. After that, it was always going to be hard to come back, harder still when you consider we spent the entire second half with a left winger at left back, a central midfielder at right back and a 19-yr-old and a 20-yr-old shoring up central defence. With us pushing hard at 2-1, the breakaway goal was always a danger and so it proved.
Djourou played really well as it happens, as did Ljungberg and van Persie, but we canâ€™t get Cole and Toure back fast enough, can we?
Itâ€™s a funny thing, confidence, as itâ€™s the one thing you canâ€™t buy and itâ€™s so hard to get. You just need to build it up bit by bit, and at the moment, weâ€™re running on empty. You could see it in the players and you can feel it in the crowd, just as you could see the opposite in the â€˜Stam players. Theyâ€™re on an up and weâ€™re flat.
Still, we gave it our all and you canâ€™t fault most of the players for that.
Reyes, Fabregas, possibly Cole, Walcott and Adebayor come into the equation for the weekend, too.
Oh, and irony of Bentleyâ€™s hat-trick wasnâ€™t lost on me either. You couldnâ€™t script it better, could you?