Sunday, 25 November 2012

Strictly Come Prancing.

There was a minor argument in our house on Saturday afternoon when my daughter found out that The Arsenal would be showing on the big telly during Strictly. A compromise was made. The Saturday night Lycra festival will be postponed until Sunday morning and she could stay up a bit later than usual. Good parenting! She understands that The Arsenal will always beat Brucie (can we play him every week) but she can't fathom why me, my wife & son looked so miserably bored watching something that had bumped her favourite programme into touch.

This is difficult to write. I don't want to go on a massive rant. Much like the latest excuse I just don't have the energy. It's quite clear things aren't right. We now have 1 point from our last 3 away games. 20 points from 39. We are in course to finish on about 57 points which last season would've seen us settle in 7th! Maths doesn't lie. Unless we improve that's where we are.

Let's look at the last 3 games. 2 wins and an away draw. Not bad and it does seem overly grumpy to be critical. However against spuds we started very badly before the joyous red card was flashed. Against Montpellier we were shocking in the first half. Against Villa we were shocking in both halves. The results are OK but it's the long term prospects that worry us pessimists.

In all honesty we just look average and that's not good enough for The Arsenal. We don't challenge for the league anymore and the domestic cup are played with indifference. We have no Devine right to win anything but we do have a right to hope. I look at this squad and they don't look special.

Maybe we need to move our own goalposts. There was a time when a massive win against the spuds would've been not only lovely but a useful 3 points in our challenge for the title. Now it's just lovely. We are like so many clubs now where individual results are important. The bigger picture has faded away.

Yesterday was so lack lustre it was embarrassing. One shot on target all afternoon & lucky not to lose. The manager's odd substitutions said we were happy with a draw at a team that have a good chance of going down. Not good enough.

I'm not sure where to go with this now. We've all said everything that needs to be said time and time again. The one thing I've avoided since blogging is the manager's position as I believe what Arsene has brought to the club deserves our total respect. However, due to the merry-go-round this week it got me thinking about what would happen if Arsene walked away. Who on earth would take over? The board at the club are hopeless and I wouldn't trust them with a catering contract (look at the menus in the ground!) let alone picking the right man to replace a legend. What shocked me yesterday was, for the first time, I was backing the manager not because I think he's still the right man but that I can't see a viable alternative! If there was an alternative the Chavs would've appointed him.

Basically we need to back the manager and the team we have but we can criticise both without being disloyal. Without opinions football is pointless. We also need to accept where we are now. Things will change. They have to. They cannot maintain this mediocrity if they want the stadium full or the tills in the shops to keep ringing. That new sponsorship money will have to be used.

But before I go.....

The tired excuse of being 'tired' was trotted out again yesterday and it just doesn't wash anymore. Why the manager thinks we will sit back and go 'oh they were tired after an uninspiring midweek game against a very weak French team were they? That explains it' is bizarre. It does him no favours. Gibbs, in the Arsenal magazine, says he gets up between 8.30 and 9am every day! He must be exceptionally tired! It's a piss poor excuse that just makes things worse. Stop it.

So onwards to Everton. Let's hope they are bloody exhausted.

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