Wednesday: forgotten

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Random, late Friday night checkin from me. It’s been one of those weeks.

Was I surprised about Wednesday’s result? Not really. But I do think too much can be read into results like that. Part of the problem, I think, lies as ever with the format of the competition we were playing in. We waltzed through the first three games, scoring fourteen goals, needing just one point from the next nine to qualify. You can see how easy it might have been to consider it job done.

One of the following three games was always going to be a dead rubber. Had we won in Donetsk, the game in Portugal could have easily gone the same way. I’m not saying there’s an excuse for complacency but it’s the kind of situation – that’s to say, a situation in which there is still room for error – that is a breeding ground for it.

The good news for the weekend is that no such mental slack-off period exists. We might be second but we are five points adrift and Chelsea are showing little stomach for a cave-in. We need to stay with them.

And the other good news is the return of several players – Fabregas, Denilson, Song and Arshavin. On top of that, van Persie has resumed training, primed for a Dutch recall during which he will no doubt be trodden on innocuously and ruled out for another three months. Joking aside (or am I?) he should never have been called up but I can’t help but wonder whether he himself could not have been a little more understanding. How difficult would it have been to rule himself out? Not very. It’s a friendly, he’s been out for yonks, and he’s not exactly a fringe player in the Dutch squad fighting for his place, Kevin Davis stylee. He knows full well he’ll come back into the side whether he misses this one or not. I know he’s as orange as Phil Brown but the whole thing achieves nothing other than getting Wenger’s heckles up.

Anyway, if you want to hear Wenger in his own words on the injury situation (sad but true fact: talking about injuries is the most crucial and anticipated conversation of the week if you are an Arsenal fan), there’s a free clip below. Enjoy the weekend and here’s to three of your finest points sterling.


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

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. ClockEndBoy

    Forgotten, agreed… But if Clcihy makes one more f*** up this season, he really needs to be dropped. I’d rather have Djourou there than him until Gibbs is fit. He is a constant liability.

  2. chas

    I’m still struggling to believe the team could have been complacent a few short weeks after West Brom.

    Hopefully a win against Newcastle will get us back on track as you say.

  3. agooner

    I completely agree re/Van Persie. It is as if he is only at Arsenal to play for Holland. While Arsenal pays his wages and his rehab everytime he gets crocked. How selfish and disrespectful of AW can he be not to rule himself out of a meaningless friendly. It may not be a bad idea to may be cut our losses and cash in on him. We have not missed him that much anyway with MC29 and BT52. Hopefully JET gets more and more minutes as well.

  4. argonaut

    I have to agree with agooner. It’s time for RVP to realise that being signed to Arsenal is a privilege, and that the club and it’s fans have been very long-suffering of his injuries. The least he can do is rule himself out of internationals until he has played half a dozen injury-free games for his club.

    While Robin is a world class player, his wages would be better spent on someone who actually plays matches for us. I would have another Chamakh (if that were possible) in a heartbeat in preference to an almost permanently injured RVP. The trouble with injuries is that once they start to recur on a player, their career is as good as over. Michael Owen is a good example of this. If RVP manages to stay fit for more than 5 minutes then we really should consider selling him as it’s only a matter of time until his next injury.

  5. Tim

    Steven Gerrand was injured every 5 -6 games in his early career, now never seems to pick up knocks (other than when England have a friendly coming up) how can people suggest we get rid of RVP just because he has been unlucky with injuries? they are not re-ocurring injuries just bad luck and a result of his skill being too much for defenders to cope with

  6. agooner

    “Steven Gerrand was injured every 5 -6 games in his early career, now never seems to pick up knocks (other than when England have a friendly coming up)”

    Fair point Tim. Is that too much to ask to atleast try to avoid meaningless friendlies especially if the player mentioned is unlucky with injury.

  7. argonaut

    The thing about Steven Gerrard is that he is now the one doing the crunching tackles rather than being on the receiving end of them.

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