This season has been a roller coaster ride so far and more so for Arsenal FC. The trickery that this club is playing on the fans is confusing and the sudden glimmers of hope that we see are extinguished and crushed so fast that we are left in a state of frustration and gloominess. We lose to West Brom and Chelsea in consecutive weeks and then thrash ManCity 3-0 at their home ground? Then after a hard-earned win against West Ham, we lose to Newcastle? Wait we’re not done yet. We win the next 3 games only to get humiliated by our main rivals at home even though we were 2-0 ahead at half time! It’s ironic how Arsenal were the only team to win last week whereas all the other title contenders dropped points. This week, all the others obtained maximum points(with the exception of Chelsea and thank God for that) while Arsenal were the ones to lose. At the moment no one has any proper reason as to why we lost to sp*rs that day and more so to why we are so inconsistent especially at home.
The reasons for the inconsistencies for all the title contenders are quite obvious. ManUtd are a club in decline with aging players. Add to that the fact that their best player a couple of season ago has left for Real and the controversy involving Rooney; it’s clear that the club is not fully mentally and physically stable right now. Liverpool too have their own problems and are hardly considered top-4 quality these days. Other than a couple of good core players, their peripherals are weak including a manager who never managed a big club. The only reason Chelsea are in a bad run right now is because of their injuries. With injuries to Fat Frank and Essien and to the core of their defense it is understandable for them to drop a few points now. This run is temporary though and it is only a matter of time that before they bounce back. ManCity have a good crop of (money-grabbing) players but they need time to gel and their team performance will only continue to improve with time. Tottenham cannot cope with the number of fixtures they have. Playing in the Champion’s league is no walk in the park and the low match-fitness of some of their players sometimes become very apparent. And in any case, they do not have a good enough defense or a strike force to seriously challenge for the title this year. But what’s Arsenal’s excuse. We currently have a more or less fully fit squad. Van Persie and Fabregas in the same squad is a miracle that we experience only during the first few weeks of the PL. Hell, even our goalie is playing well these days!
Who better to answer these questions than the manager of the club himself? Arsene Wenger explains the reason for the loss to Tottenham:
“We can switch off at the back, We are not there. With five minutes to go you make sure you win your headers when you play at the back and we were caught unfortunately.’’
“We were 2-0 up and it was all in our hands. It’s a strange coincidence of facts that are very difficult to explain even when you are in the job as long as I am. But to completely lose the focus as much as we did and especially the second goal and third goal are very difficult.
“We wanted to keep the urgency and our defensive tightness alive [in the second half] but straight away when we came out [we conceded]. It’s not the first time that has happened and it is one of our weaknesses. Many times we come out and drop a little bit the urgency when we are ahead. We did not come out and be dominating.”
And whose fault is it that we still do not have a defender who can aerially dominate, Mr. Wenger? Even with signings of Koscielny, Squilacci and Vermaelen, we still do not have that big monster of a defender that we have craved for the last 5 years. Not saying that the players above are bad but they all have one single weakness-the same weakness the Arsenal defense had for years – defending a set-piece. And for the sp*rs game, can anyone explain why Djourou was dropped? I mean, if he had done nothing wrong for the last few games why should he be dropped. Koscielny is a better tackler than Djourou but Djourou is slightly better aerially and could have made a difference in that match.
So far all fingers point towards Wenger. It is his job to face it now. He himself admitted that this team has completely matured. He himself admitted that this squad now has a winning mentality. And, he himself admitted that this is the strongest Arsenal squad that he ever had. If it isn’t the players or the fans, then it’s you Mr. Wenger. The stakes are higher than ever now. Prove to us that you are still up for it. Prove to us that YOU still have that winning mentality. Prove it now because our patience can only last so long..