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The Highbury Library animted promo v5 350x350

Last summer Wenger courted (and bid for) Lars Bender, Luis Gustavo, Gonzalo Higuain, and Luis Suarez. I think it would be insulting to suggest he has suddenly forgotten that our options in central midfield and up front need attention. I don’t expect players of the quality of Özil or Suarez to be targeted again, but I presume we will prioritise signing players in those positions. Let’s not wait for Javi Martinez and Edinson Cavani to be rock up in N5 come August – we can all agree that (surely) isn’t happening. But Lars Bender? Perhaps (Bayer Leverkusen are in their own fight for fourth place at he minute.)

On the 28th April 2014 Arsenal beat Alan Pardew's (Haha) Newcastle United 3-0 meaning that once again Tottenham finish below us for the 19th season in a row. Great consistency from both sides of North London. I want to thank Tottenham for having such a wonderful sense of humour. Football doesn't always go our way and on those days when it hasn't more often than not they found a way to cheer us up and make us smile. Long may this continue.

After a few years sabbatical, Begkamp eventually did his coaching badges and has seen his career rocket; originally starting with the Netherland B team, Bergkamp returned to Ajax where he went from coaching the U12’s to assistant manager alongside Frank de Boer within 4 years. He has played at three of the biggest clubs in the world with differing styles, firstly playing total football at Ajax, before having a somewhat difficult spell at the tactically adept Inter Milan before finally moving to Arsenal, where he was allowed freedom to play his preferred languid style of attacking football. Now back at Ajax, one of the great school’s of football, his Ajax team are playing some truly scintillating football. I’ve witnessed many footballers in the past who have decided to rush their badges and take on a task that their ability simply couldn’t match, Tony Adams springs to mind as well as Roy Keane; but it seems Bergkamp was cautious in his approach, taking time out of the game before deciding to pursue his badges. His sabbatical may be the reason I like him so much, he has taken the time and consideration to think about his future and it seems he is sure with what he wants to do.

player clearly benefitting from these returns is Lukas Podolski who once again displayed his deadly finishing to seal the victory on the day. It’s now four goals in a week for the German and the fact he is finding his shooting boots at such a crucial stage of the season is something we can all be thankful for. Starting once again in a wide left position, Podolski again netted both goals of his brace having drifted infield to positions one might expect a centre forward to take up. Surely this fact alone is enough to pour scorn on the continued accusations that he ‘lacks movement’?

Arsenal’s first and third goals on the night were scored by Lukas Podolski who went some way to showing that the doubts about his overall play can be put to one side when he can finish in such style. His first came as he drifted into the area, latched on to a pass from Santi Cazorla and then fired the ball into the bottom corner. In the second half, Podolski was the quickest thinking man in the Emirates as he sprung the West Ham offside trap to receive Aaron Ramsey’s header before slamming into the roof of the net. It seems to have become the fashionable thing to slate our German international forward with people almost instinctively throwing around criticisms like “lack of movement” and “lazy” even when it isn’t the case. Podolski has had something of a difficult time of it this campaign. An explosive start was curtailed by a three-month injury set-back. He then struggled to find his place in what was a winning team before being shoehorned onto the left wing when the side went into freefall. While stats don’t tell the full story

The controlling of one’s emotions requires a certain level of emotional intelligence (intrapersonal intelligence), which is a subject I have written about before. This also helps one identify and assess the emotions of others too (interpersonal intelligence), thus giving a clearer and wider view of the general feelings regarding a certain situation. It may then seem obvious (as it did to me) that building one’s emotional intelligence is conducive to a much more contained and controlled approach to all aspects of life, but especially those which are dictated by emotion, such as supporting a football club. But emotional intelligence doesn’t come easy to everyone and some people really struggle with conscious emotional understanding. We’re all different human beings after all. At the same time, it’s clear to see which fans do have a higher level of emotional ‘understanding’ (which actually sounds better to me than ‘intelligence’) in the way they approach issues and debate, even simply when they are having a laugh or taking the piss.

It feels like you can speak to a person for hours, explaining to them that we choose not to take the route of a sugar daddy, we stuck to our principles and our aims have silently been lower than usual. We've had to wait and we're just now seeing the benefits of the situation, it would have taken any team 2-3 years (with the availability of players) to go from being a 4th competing squad to a sound title winning squad. You can come out of that conversation feeling nothing you say will get through, because when a set of bad results happen, people ignore the context of our situation and look at the last 9 years without a trophy as a succession of failure upon failure. They look at the last 9 years without a trophy as a failure, yet if we win the F.A. Cup this season, it will somehow, still be seen as failure by many due to our late performances in the league and so on.

  • 15 Sep 2015
    So let me stop reminiscing of days gone by and let me focus on our Welsh wonder. Let me start off by saying that I think it is quite obvious that Aaron Ramsey is better in central midfield. His partnership with Mesut Özil, his running from deep and his underrated ball winning ability makes him a ...Read more