Saturday, 16 April 2011

Out Of The Wilderness

So its been a while since I last posted anything, and that's down to a couple of reasons:

1) I've had a lot of university work to do. Gotta get that dissertation done, amongst other things.

2) I've been in Rome as well... not much time to blog from Italia.

So since I last blogged about Arsenal, the Gunners could only muster a 0-0 draw at home to Blackburn (a miserable result) but they did manage to beat Blackpool 3-1 at Bloomfield Road. Its good to see that we are back to winning ways but I fear it may be too late, as United have been relentless during the run-in. As of today we are 7 points behind the leaders with a game in hand; that game is at White Hart Lane against Spurs, and we still have to play United at home. Even if we win both of those games, we will still be behind by 1 point and will need United to slip up if we're to stand any chance of winning the league. Every game for Arsenal now is a must-win - there can be no more draws and definitely no more losses - any dropped points from now on means the title challenge is dead. The team needs to step it up a bit during this run-in if we are to stand any chance of catching United. I am glad to hear that van Persie has been trying to instil some fighting spirit in the squad; apparently he gave Diaby a grilling at half time in Blackpool last weekend, and its about time someone did. Diaby actually looked to have had a decent game at Bloomfield Road, even scoring a rare goal, but his performances this season have been a mixed bag. I am not Diaby's biggest fan, and would preferably like to see him offloaded next season. I think he is far too casual on the ball and doesn't pass when he probably should, which is infuriating on the counter-attack when he refuses to play the ball suitably. Despite his great ability to control the ball, sometimes beating opposition players with ease, his decision making has always been questionable and it seems we always get punished when Diaby gets caught in possession, which is an all too regular occurrence. So I'm glad van Persie gave him some stick - its a welcome sign from the Dutchman that he's taking some control in the locker-room, some much-needed leadership.

But first of all we have the matter of a revitalised Liverpool side coming to the Emirates, who have gained some serious momentum since 'King Kenny' Dalglish returned to Anfield, desperately trying to secure European football for next year. That, coupled with Andy Carroll's return from injury, makes the game tomorrow a tricky encounter. Carroll has been slowly getting back to 100% since his recovery, and he looks to have recaptured his early-season form with 2 goals against Manchester City this week. If you can cast your mind back to the last time Carroll visited the Emirates, you'll remember him rising high to head home the only goal for Newcastle in a 1-0 win. I really like Carroll, I think he's a fantastic player, the definitive English centre forward. However, I wouldn't mind if he has an absolute shocker tomorrow, him and the rest of the Liverpool squad. Its crucial that we beat the Merseysiders tomorrow afternoon and they will not go easy on us, but thankfully our injury concerns are beginning to clear up a bit, with reports that Szczesny could return in goal, and Djourou and Sagna could also play a part. Wenger needs to stress to the team that there can be no more mistakes from now on, every chance needs to be taken and capitalised on, or the season is over and the fans go back to uttering the "what ifs" and "what could have beens". I think, over the last few years, we are all fed up of that.

Thanks for reading.

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