Saturday, 4 December 2010

Soft Centre Point

Top of the league! If the FA feel like stopping the Premier League today as a protest to FIFA I'll support them. Champions! That would be grand.

How a goal can change things. At half time there were rumblings in the crowd. We'd started brightly (as we usually do), could've been 4-0 up but contrived to be huffing and puffing at 1-1 with a team flirting with the bottom 3. The centre of our defence could not be softer if we had the caramel bunny playing back there.
Time and again Fulham pushed the ball between our middle two and at one point the linesman was our best defender. Today's game was dedicated to CentrePoint. Maybe it should've been dedicated to CentreHalf. It's a real worry. It will cost us. It probably already has.

May I remind you we are top of the league while I'm having a moan. However this isn't a negative moan. It's a frustrated moan about how close we are to greatness. We've lost at home 3 times in games we should've won. This is not complacency on my part. We didn't lose because of a dodgy ref, a deflected goal or a turned down penalty. We lost to Newcastle, WBA and Spurs because on those 3 days we were crap. Coming up is a massive WHAT IF but had we turned up on those 3 days and played the way we know we can we'd be 10 points clear. ARRRRRRRRRGGGGG! Imagine that!! They were games we threw away. I know all other teams will have a list of 'what ifs' but I don't care about them. I care about what we seem determined to throw away. If we miss out on the big one by a few points it will be unbearable.

Today's win is obviously fantastic and thank goodness it's not in that list above. However it's in the list with West Ham and Birmingham. It was hard work of their own making. The turning point was Koscielny knocking himself out during a bit of defending we've become accustomed to. It was shambolic but it led to our best fit defender coming off the bench. How awful do we need to be before Djourou is considered for a start? He looks commanding and attacks everything. The balls through the centre were snuffed out. He needs to be first choice now.

Fabianski polished his reputation again but the fact he kept us in it at one point underlines the softness of our centre. And someone please have a word with Song. He thinks he's Messi and Henry's love child and it needs to stop. The softness starts in the centre of the midfield and he once did a fine job there. If this continues I'd drop him until his highlights grow out. Oh I miss Gilberto.

So rant over! We are in a Semi final, top of the league, touching distance of the next bit of the Champions League and yet I'm cautious. I just hope the end of the season isn't filled with regret where a tinker here and a few quid spent there would have ended in euphoria. Don't blow it Arsenal, don't blow it.

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