Cue funky riff: “Teachers, keep on teaching, preachers, don’t stop preaching. World, keep on turning”. Stevie Wonder sang those lyrics back in the 1973, but today’s football results immediately drew it to my head. While teachers can keep on teaching, and preachers don’t need to stop preaching (I promise this has a point), the top teams – despite their dominance – can’t always reach the higher ground needed to win, despite their best efforts. Which sounds like an obvious statement, but there seems to a worldwide overreaction every time the big clubs don’t claim three points.
Yes Arsenal lost today, and some people did overreact just a tad, but Arsene Wenger has definitely not lost the plot. This is by no means a dig at Saura Bhattacharjee, the author of this article. If he hadn’t written the article, someone else would have – and there are more examples of overreactions littering the Google news pages every single occasion Arsenal don’t win or impress.
Now is a time to get behind Wenger and his team. Considering the budget he is working with, what he has done and is continuing to do with Arsenal is wonderful for the club. I also wish he had signed a new goalkeeper, but maybe Manuel Almunia will prove us all wrong. Maybe he will use Wojciech Szczęsny, who looks like a fantastic young goalkeeper?
Frustrating as it was that West Bromwich Albion were able to take three points away from the Emirates today, sometimes the underdogs deserve it. I wasn’t able to see the match, but from everything I’ve read they played with far more heart and determination than a lacklustre Arsenal side – who were probably still jaded from the midweek clash at White Hart Lane that went into extra time. It could be worse; Tottenham also lost today to the former bottom-dwellers West Ham.
Arsenal losing today against newly-promoted West Bromwich Albion is a microcosm for what makes the Premier League so attractive. There are at least three teams with an outside chance of winning the Premier League for the first time, as well as their being a slightly bigger chance that four of the three that already have will do it again. 2010-2011 is probably not Blackburn’s year again, but they are one of the smaller teams who are certainly capable of causing an upset.
Fallibility is wonderful in a large club, it makes for a more exciting overall contest – and may even tempt more clubs to come to the Emirates with attacking on their agenda, as opposed to packing their own box and hoping for a lucky break. And if there were no fallibility, how would we have these interesting discussions that Bleacher Report is a breeding ground for?
I say kudos to West Bromwich Albion, and well done to Sunderland last week for having the heart to sneak a draw. Fingers crossed Arsenal themselves are able to cause an upset away to Chelsea in their next game.