Good evening to you, gloriously pulchritudinous reader of this here wondrous blogging creation. I hope with every ounce of my being that you’re all in fine fettle.
If I’ve noticed one thing this past week, it’s that everyone, their mother, and their dog claims to in some way have “insider information” pertaining to Arsenal. To be brutally, and perhaps arrogantly, honest; it gets right on my bleedin’ nerves. I wouldn’t make that claim. I can’t make that claim. I do not have a friend who relentlessly scurries about the halls of The Emirates pressing his earhole against doors, nor am I engaged in a sordid conjugal arrangement with the tea-lady that sees coitus exchanged for tid-bits of information about Chamakh’s contract.
Chances are, the vast majority of the folks making such wide-eyed and mendacious claims are only doing so in the vein hope of a bit of attention being focused on their Twitter accounts. Now is the time I’d ordinarily use some profanity, but I shan’t - lest Mean Lean burst through my living room door brandishing a Kanashlikov and a menacing glare.
What I would like to talk about this week, and what the cacophony of transfer gossip has taken the attention away from, is the topic of greater importance: our vital trip to West Brom and the delicious three points we require.
The Norwich game wasn’t pleasant viewing, was it? No.. It was bordering on farcical; almost pantomime-like defending and a bewildering lack of concentration when there was much at stake. Fortunately, the footballing gods saw fit to grant us yet another chance to end the season on a good note. Proceedings should really have been finished and secured a long time ago, but the concept is simple enough; win, and we finish third.
The execution may be an altogether tougher undertaking. With the imminent departure of Roy Hodgson to the thankless task of managing England, players and supporters alike at The Hawthornes are certain to want to send him off in style. They’ll be up for it, and buoyed by having nothing to lose. Arsenal, on the other hand, have a great deal to lose, and it’s in moments like this the team can go either way: we can galvanize and turn in an excellent performance, or we capitulate, showing the defensive solidity of toilet paper in a puddle.
I’m hoping the penny will have dropped with the players. We cannot approach the game with anything other than 100% focus and respect for our opponents. We were punished by both Wigan and Norwich for, perhaps, taking them a little too lightly. If we do the same on Sunday, I can envisage an uncomfortable afternoon involving fevered glances toward the results of others. Probably a lot of screaming, too. And weeping. I get emotional at times...
When Sunday comes, I’m sure, like me, you’ll be a nervous mess. I have faith that the team know this is the final opportunity to put some gloss on a topsy-turvy season. I just hope the Arsenal that turns up is the one that can wipe the floor with Spurs and Milan, not the one that can concede 3 at home to Norwich.
Thanks for reading today, you lovely creatures. If you’d like to keep up with me and all my Twittery goodness, then please take a moment to follow my Twitter account @_ArmchairGooner.
Until next week, keep your fingers crossed and take care.