We started our Cardiff odyssey in 2001; four FA Cup finals later and we’re there again in the Milk. It’s one of the anomalies of Wenger’s reign that it will be his first Milkrumbelows final, and Arsenal’s first league cup final since Big Tone threw Steve Morrow on the ground and broke his arm in 1993.
It was nail-biting alright, but over the 210 minutes of this tie, we were the better side for about 6/7ths of it. Stuttering Trotspurs had just one shot on target tonight – so nobody can deny we are worthy finalists. It’s always a joy to get one over our chums up the road.
Sure, Rosicky and Clichy came on to excellent effect tonight, but my special words this evening go to Denilson, who from my sofa vantage point (it’s amazing how much you see on the box compared to eight rows from the front of the stand) was one of the brightest sparks in our side.
Don’t get me wrong; I appreciate players like the indefatigable Nigel Flamini, but Denilson must be knocking on the door. Not just knocking, but rapping hard, with a caipirinha in one hand and a Brazilian wax in the other. He was superb tonight. He tackles, he passes, he’s calm, he’s tough. He’s a wonderful little player. And of course, he’s but 18.
Adebayor too was just fabulous. To use the most tired cliche of all time. he’s “got good feet for a big man”.
Onto Cardiff we go. The ticketing could be interesting here; for years now, season ticket holders at Highbury have had it pretty lucky in terms of getting cup final tickets as we used to get allocated roughly the same amount of seats as we had season tickets.
Now that’s all changed: there must be something in the zone of 40,000 season ticket holders in all now, which means there’ll be some bare-knuckle fighting for tickets from now on.
We shall apply of course. It’s been too long since our last rendezvous at the Abergavenny Little Chef.
Come on your rip-roarers.