No match thoughts from me this weekend as I missed the game and got back late Sunday night so I am in the rather unusual position of not having watched the Arsenal on a Monday afternoon.
I was re-watching the first 20 minutes in bed at round 1am this morning of which I had already seen before setting off on a rather alcohol fueled stag weekend, but before getting to anything new I passed out for the night.
I have seen the goals though. Ramsey's header was one that a traditional big man up front would have been proud of. I wonder what Frank Lampard's record is from open play in one season, I wouldn't be surprised to see Ramsey beat whatever it is as long as he remains fit. The guy is pulling out the full repertoire in front of goal.
Özil's two assists were pin point and that is why we have him, it is why we paid so much money. He has that extra bit of quality in his final pass that perhaps someone like Rosicky (as much as I love him) doesn't have. There have been complaints that he hasn't been grabbing games by the scruff of the neck and dominating matches but we already have the best midfielder in the Premier League (at least) doing that in Aaron Ramsey. When you have the most amount of tackles in the league as well as the top scoring midfielders not to mention top 2-3 assist makers in the division then you know you are not to be messed with.
Jack Wilshere is very much on the way up right now, the more he plays without injury the better he is getting. I am looking forward to the second half of the season where I think he will be superb for us. He will be so good that I wouldn't mind having his photograph blown up and hung on my wall. I would actually get this Wilshere mural, although I am not sure the missus would allow it. Anyway...
Flamini's lashed strike from Özil's slid pass was enjoyable viewing. Ramsey demonstrating his remarkable engine by powering through alongside Theo in stoppage time to score our 3rd.
On Saturday morning I was thinking about in years gone by when I hoped that our rivals would drop points at tricky grounds only for them to turn that team over 3-0. It was a deflating feeling as a supporter and no doubt to the players also so I am hoping that our rivals are feeling the same about us.
I wanted Tottenham to beat Manchester United because £100m or not, Tottenham are never title challengers. At least Manchester United have proven that they can win the title. But a draw is not a bad result, the gap has reopened between us. Liverpool lost to Hull City Tigers but once again this should be irrelevant if we are going for the league.
I expect Manchester City victories at home such is their strength at the Etihad but Chelsea continue to worry me.
They have not clicked into gear this season and look so dour yet they continue to win games. When Jay Rodriguez slotted them in front within a few seconds of the kick off I thought a rather impressive Sunday was about to get so much better but Chelsea dug in and scored from set pieces to turn the game around. They are a big ugly expensively assembled Sam Allardyce's Bolton. *yuck*
We remain four points clear, unfortunately four points is nothing at this stage. We and Tottenham should know this more than anybody else. We've got to beat Chelsea at the Emirates in the next few weeks but that is a little while yet.
On Wednesday we face Hull City and you can be sure of rotation before our fixture program really gets ramped up to the max.
There are two ways of rotation. One is to make a single change every week, taking turns to rest the entire team or play your strongest available side as often as you can and then make wholesale changes. I remember we did something similar a few years back against Wigan. We should have won that game but ended up drawing I believe.
This time around we have very good quality in reserve and should be able to field a fresh and very competitive team in midweek. It is a shame that Lukas Podolski is still not back as I'm sure Arsene would have wanted him to replace Giroud but it's pretty likely that Theo will be the one asked to take the position he so craves.
Flamini, Rosicky, Monreal and Vermaelen could all conceivably come in if not more like Gnabry. More about that over the next few days.