For all the doom and gloom that has been associated with anything Arsenal over the past week, last night’s Champions League game between Real Madrid and Spurs gave me enough reason to smile. I watched as Real’s £220m starting XI walloped a Spurs team that cost just above £75m, 1,2,3,4 goals to nill. And all I could do was pity a team that was not ready to be where they found themselves. Adebayor renewed his rivalry with the Spurs side and scored two fantastic headers. Not like he did not warn them. So it’s 10 in 13, eh? Well done son.
Make no mistake about it, Spurs have had a dream Champions League debut but it’s been basically trial and error for them. They topped their group but conceded even more goals than us. Then in the round of 16, they played a Milan side that was not interested in playing football. They got an away goal and cancelled each other out in London, booking an appointment with Real.
Quite a number of non Arsenal fans mentioned how far Spurs went and the point that we could not laugh at them since we did not make it that far. Even though we did not make it that far, we can be proud of our achievement; we beat arguably the best team the game has ever seen, in London and lost 3-1 at the Camp Nou. Some Spurs fans point to Peter Crouch’s sending off as the turning point in the game, but the fact is unlike our game against Barca, they were already behind and can have no complaints whatsoever about the decision.
To “more Arsenal” news, Nasri’s agent has confirmed that the French man is happy with us and will not leave during the summer transfer window. Alain Migliaccio pointed out that the 23-year old could be interested in playing in the Serie A but that will not happen next season as the player is focused to do well with Arsenal. Probably our player of the season, Samir has scored 14 goals in all competitions, 9 in the League, 2 in the Champions League, 1 in the F.A. Cup and 2 in the Carling Cup. This is a welcome development as we were already preparing for a summer full of rumours about the futures of Nasri and Cesc.
Meanwhile, the nominations for both the PFA Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year awards have been announced and I am a bit surprised. The nominees for Player of the Year are Tottenham’s Gareth Bale, our own Samir Nasri, Blackpool’s Charlie Adam, Man United’s Nemanja Vidic, West Ham’s Scott Parker and Man City’s Carlos Tevez. I wonder why Van der Vaart and Nani are not on the list. However Nani’s name comes up in the Young Player’s category, alongside Tottenham’s Gareth Bale, Nasri, Jack Wilshere, Manchester City’s Joe Hart and Everton’s Seamus Coleman. So Samir has the chance to make it a clean sweep of both honours, following in the footsteps of Cristiano Ronaldo (2006/07) and Andy Gray (1976/77).
As an Arsenal fan I’d like if our players made a clean sweep of the awards, Nasri for the main gong and Wilshere for the young player award, but its rare to see the main gong go to a player whose team didn’t win any trophy unless of course the player in question was excellent all season, so I’d say Vidic is the early front runner for the gong. But everyone on the list deserves it as well.
Still a few days till our next game away at Bloomfield road against B’pool, and NO this won’t be a walk in the park, this is going to be VERY tricky seeing as we’ve stumbled against teams like this and we all know survival sometimes trumps title fight so let’s hope our players can do the deed and finally win a game. Rumours of Song’s injury flaring up again will be softened by the return of fitness to Emanuel Frimpong, the English-Ghanian youngster damaged ligaments in pre-season and played for the reserves yesterday, I hope he’s promoted immediately I really don’t want Denilson in the team again.
From wherever you’re reading, here’s hoping tonight’s game between Utd & Chelski can live up to yesterday’s with goals aplenty.