Handshakes Spotted At Highbury

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I think, in the cold gloom of today, that I’m happy with that point.

Realistically, given our fragile confidence, last night was only ever going to be a stepping stone in the right direction, and that’s the way it turned out. We had the first half licked, the second was mostly United, but neither side really deserved the win so it was nil-nils all round.

On the plus side, we’ve not conceded a goal for four league games, Reyes was again good, Hleb was good for around the first half hour, Gilberto tackled well (yes, I was shocked too) and Pires was even seen tracking back (yes, I was shocked too).

The downsides were the same as ever – we’re not scoring enough thanks in part to a midfield that, in its current guise, has insufficient muscle and wherewithal.

But better – much better.

There was little of the bitter rancour we have seen in recent times, probably because scrapping like mad would have been just a tad embarrassing given where both sides now find themselves. Everyone seemed to get on fine at the final whistle, which brought something new to the occasion. In fact, the nearest it got to real controversy was when my brother uttered one expletive too many for the Metropolitan policeman standing not far from him and was duly given a proverbial clip round the ear. How I laughed. From that point on, the air was full of Bloodys, Bloomings and polite references to the quality of Graham Poll’s spectacles only.

As an aside, one bloke behind me shouted Nigel Reo-Coker’s name out last night, which was odd.

Interesting thought though, I thought.


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