Hull are our next opponents and they've given a rather impressive account of themselves this season. Losing just one in their opening exhanges so far this season. They are striking up some good form, but we are doing rather well ourselves. It will definitely have to be a major upset if Hull are to get anything from this game today. I can't see us losing this game, the first team have been well rested and will have to 'fight' to keep their starting positions, knowing that there are a bunch of kids, waiting in the wings to usurp them. So nothing but three points is what i expect from this match, and cement our place on the top of the table.
Call me a bit foolish or whatever, but I wouldn't like us to be top at this stage too much ( I contradict myself, i know, just hear me out though). Well for one, it puts uneccessary pressure on the young team. It lulls the supporters into thinking 'yeah this is it, we're going to do it this time'. It makes the papers gush over how good we are and on and on till the break of dawn....You get the picture. I'd rather we stay within touching distance of the top, 2 points or so off the top so we can plod on and put in steady performances is away from the eager, over expecting eyes, and then surge to the top in the latter stages of the season. Nit-picking I know, but I don't want it to fall apart like last season, when so much was expected of us and then it well, fizzled out.
Lot to get through today so let's keep it going. Michel Platini has retracted his comments on Wenger. In all fairness, they were way off the mark and Arsene was due an apology. This was brought about on account of the older Platini spanking the younger, and it was well deserved. And I see you nod your head in agreement. Arsene Wenger, who is just absolute genius speaks about Jack Wilshire, likening him to the great Liam Brady. High praise indeed for someone so young, but he is a class act, as were all of the kids in the CC match midweek.
Arsene had plenty to say yesterday and some if it had to do with him completing 12 illustruous years at the club on Sunday. He says he never thought about leaving and gets a touch philosophical and also thinks we should not rest on past glories but strive for more in the future and we should have no complaints really. Congrats Arsene, and thanks for everything so far, more to come we hope! Wenger rather relentlessly said-
"I’m not very happy to speak about my anniversary because what interests me in life is what is in front of me and not what is behind me.If you came to my house you would not find anything from the last 12 years, because I’m only interested in what’s happening in the future. There are no photos.I don't even know where those trophies and mementos are. I am interested in history, but not my history. It's something strange. I'm always oriented forward, forward, forward."
When asked about whether he thought about leaving during his tenure, Le Boss said-
“I was offered the chance to leave but I never considered leaving."
"The longer I stay the more difficult it becomes to envisage leaving. But I know one thing - you have to prepare yourself.
"You have to work inside the Club like you will spend your whole life there. But as well you have to accept the idea it can stop from one minute to the next.
"But that is basically life as well - you expect to live for 100 years but you can die from one minute to the next."
There's also a bit more about Wenger's decision to continue after 2011, when his contract expires at Arsenal and you can read about that here. The Manager also talks about the kids and the faith he places in them.I know everyone's going to town about the kids, but I really hope the lack of experience doesn't trip us up again. Feet on the ground folks it is, a long way to go and all that.
Back to the game today at Ashburton Grove, the team news is that we are without Samir Nasri again this weekend, while we do have Mr. Resilient aka Gael Clichy back , and Silvestre is in contention again for the first time. Tomas Rosicky is still out though, leaving Wenger 'speechless' and us as well I'm convinced. We joke about it, but here's hoping we see Tomas back on the pitch soon.
It should be a reasonably good test for us I think tonight. The Tigers will come at us with all they've got, and we can prove our strenghth and more importantly our consistency. We all know that we have the talent, but do we have the bottle to do this week in week out. Well, lets find out the only way we can. The game is a 1730 kick off in the UK and it's live on Star Sports for viewers in Asia at 2200 India time.
And that's your lot today..
Come on...the Arsenal!!