Good evening, intrepid life-forms furiously scouring the well-kept pages of Arsenal Vision.
There isn’t much in life for which I reserve unbridled hatred. In fact, I’d go as far as saying there isn’t anything that’ll render me a drooling, apoplectic mess on a regular basis. Except Chelsea.
For a moment, I’d like you all to picture the vomit-encrusted horror of John Terry wandering onto the pitch, all arrogant swagger and suited, as his teammates insist upon him lifting the Champions League trophy. If ever there is a less deserving human being of such prestigious success, it’s him. I’d sooner see Hitler lift the trophy. Now, for another moment, I’d like you all to join me in repeatedly bashing my head against a concrete wall as a means of repelling that vile image from my brain. Let’s all take a quiet second to do that...
Painful, but worth it.
When you consider the obstacles they’ve overcome, I get an overwhelming, sinking feeling that it could just be their year. Occasionally, a team falters and blunders its way to a final against all the odds, defying every expectation and prediction. I can’t imagine Barcelona will ever enjoy such dominance in a semi-final and squander so many opportunities. But they did. With the elements and likelihood firmly stacked against them when playing Benfica, those irksome blues still emerged the victors. Painfully, it appears written in the stars.
So, I’m going to bet on them winning. Why, James? Why would would you do such a thing? I hear you collectively ponder. Well, it’s because I don’t bet. I possess no luck whatsoever and it’s total certitude that my money will not be returned. I’d be happy to lose £20 if it’s for such an honourable and worthy cause.
Of course, by now you’ll be well aware of the connotations an English Champions League winner currently unlikely to finish in their domestic top four has on qualification. Should Chelsea do the unthinkable, and assuming I’m correctly informed; only the top 3 will qualify along with them. Unquestionably, that puts a bit of added pressure on our remaining 3 fixtures - none of which I think are particularly easy.
At the weekend, we travel to the Neanderthal Stadium to face Stoke and Tony Pulis. By no means an easy task. Without Arteta and Walcott for the remainder of the season, with with Newcastle breathing down our necks like an angry donkey, now is not the time for one of ‘those’ Arsenal performances rife with calamitous defending. We need to unite to progress. We need to really go all guns blazing to obtain 9 points from our remaining game - a points tally that absolutely guarantees the final position in the league we so desire.
It can be done. Our squad contains enough talent and ability to comfortably dispatch the teams we have to face. This season has been one of the most electrifyingly peculiar so far. For every excruciating low, there has been a euphoric, hug-that-total-stranger-until-they-burst high. Finishing 3rd after such an inauspicious start represents a minor miracle, and one all of us would have accepted with open arms during September and January.
Arsene Wenger, players of Arsenal, it’s over to you. Do us proud.
Thanks for reading today, you beautiful bar-stewards (those of you who read my blog will know I use another word in that sentiment, but Mean Lean has decreed I may not use naughty expletives). I sincerely hope you’re enjoying reading as much as I am enjoying writing for each one of you. It’s a real pleasure.
Should you wish to keep up with my blog (yes, I intend to shamelessly self-promote wherever I can), and if you’d like the dubious honour of witnessing my startling array of extraneous and foolhardy tweets, you can follow my Twitter account - @_ArmchairGooner.
Until next week, I bid you farewell. Take care of yourselves.
[Mean Lean] *Pushes open the door in the middle of recording* Hello all, just wanted to say that the naughty expletives ban is down to Newsnow and not myself. I have street cred to uphold here you know? Can I also point you in the direction of his very entertaining blog? http://jamesstokes.wordpress.com/ If you haven't already read it yet then obviously check it out.
There will be a Your Vision article on the site later, be sure to check back later.