Never thought an international break would be a welcome event but given the events of the weekend I feel us arsenal fans will appreciate the breather. Supporting arsenal is a full time job and the lows come part and parcel with the highs. The thing with football is it is an infinite journey with many twists and turns, there are no finish lines, you win a cup you move on to the next one. It isn’t like a rocky movie with a freeze frame of punching the air in glory at the end you plan for the next season and move on.
Saturday’s draw felt like a defeat to many gunners’ fans, to throw away a two goal lead at home to a side not on our level hit hard, really hard the missed penalty rubbed salt straight into the open wound that was our patience.
The bad feeling peaked on Saturday and it took a day or two for the fans to calm down. Would a midweek game have given the team a chance to fix the errors from Saturday? Probably, maybe but for me the mini break gives me a chance to recharge my faith and belief in my team.
Provided there are no major injuries from the international games I can realign my focus on the massive game we have coming up. Last season the match against spurs was a major turning point in our fortunes as we overturned the bad feelings from previous games and restored the belief in the team. This season things are slightly different however the bad feelings are lingering. Losing to Tottenham is not acceptable at any time, and if that were to happen this Saturday then the Wenger out brigade will be at their strongest, a defeat would make any defence of Wenger a hard task.
We do have some positives leading up to the north London derby. The form of Olivier Giroud is a positive, the Frenchman is starting to find the back of the net more regularly and the confidence is growing.
We will need the big guy to bring his A game on Saturday, if there are still arsenal fans out there yet to be convinced about Giroud’s abilities then the winning goal against the spuds will elevate the striker to god like status (for a day or two). I for one feel a bit more confident he can cause some problems for the spud defence and hope he returns from France duties with no injury.
Another positive is the return of Szczesny to the arsenal first team, I would assume he is a shoe in to start on Saturday replacing Vito Mannone, although the Italian hasn’t been a complete disaster in the first team he has raised a few questions in recent performances. The header he conceded on Saturday is one of the goals you would expect a top keeper to save, he will be a lot better for the experience he has gained over the last month or so but now is a time for reflection to work on the good and bad sides of his first team game experiences whilst our Pole returns to number one duty.
In other news Emmanuel Frimpong went public to declare his determination to succeed at arsenal. Some rumours started to surface yesterday that the combative midfielder was going to be sold in the New Year as the club decided against offering him a new contract. Thanks to the platform of twitter the arsenal man put the rumours straight by stating he intends to stay at arsenal beyond this season, he also hinted that a loan move is on the cards. Which team that will be is not yet known but he clearly has been given the blessing of Arsene to continue his rehabilitation with first team football out on loan.
He built such a good relationship with Wolverhampton wanderers last season it would not surprise many if he went back there on loan. The drop down to the championship may not carry favour with all fans but I feel the chance for first team will take preference over whether it’s at premiership level or not. It would probably be a greater test at championship level for him as the tackles are not wrapped in cotton wool there. Of course we don’t want to risk a reoccurrence of the injuries he sustained over the years but in the long run he needs to overcome the psychological barriers such injuries can bring. It helped benefit Aaron Ramsey’s return to arsenal first team duty with his spells at Cardiff and Nottingham Forest and can do the same for the Dench mastermind.
Enjoy your day people.
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