So that’s the cracks papered over then, some might say.
And to some extent, yes it is. Last night we faced the Borussia Dortmund who currently lie 3rd from bottom in the Bundesliga. The Borussia Dortmund who last weekend threw away a 2 goal lead to draw against SC Paderborn 07 (no, me neither). It was not the Borussia Dortmund that, before yesterday, had swept all aside in the Champions League, winning 4 from 4.
But there is no need to put a negative spin on last. It was a good, controlled performance and has ensured that, for the 15th season in a row, we qualify for the Champions League knock out stages.
Yaya Sanogo’s first goal for the club, whilst offside, could give a boost to a man who, whilst talented, has struggled since his move to England. He is still just 21, and I think we he could go from strength to strength – as long as he stays fit. Add this goal to the brace he scored for France u21s last week, his confidence should be soaring.
As for Alexis Sanchez. His finish was Pires-esque. This guy is a class above. Enough has already been written about him in other blogs. He raises the quality of our team. He is what you would expect from a big summer signing. I look forward to when Mesut Ozil and Theo Walcott return, as it will only make Sanchez better. It will be scary.
Of course, there were a couple of negatives. Sanogo limped off with a tight hamstring and, more worryingly, Mikel Arteta’s injury could rule him out for 5 weeks.
And Arteta’s injury really is the story of our season. As Olivier Giroud returns, Jack Wilshere gets ruled out for up to 10 weeks. As Laurent Koscielny returns, Arteta is ruled out for 5 weeks. It really has been one step forward one step back with injuries this season.
Personally, with the lack of central midfielder’s at our disposal, I would not mind us changing formation. Go 442 with Flamini and Ramsey in the middle, Sanchez and Chamberlain out wide, and Welbeck and Giroud up top. But it wont happy, Wenger will remain stubborn to his 4141.
Qualification secured for another season. A run of 3 games without a win ended. Let’s get the positivity and momentum going.
Our next 4 games are winnable. 12 for 12 is not out of the question. It might not put us back in the title race, but would catapult us up the league.
Back the boys on the pitch. Arsenal first.
On a side night, as a massive cricket fan, and someone who was out in Melbourne and Sydney for the 2010/11 Ashes series, last nights result pales into insignificance upon hearing the news of Australian cricketer Philip Hughes’ death. Just 25 years old.
The prayers and thoughts of everyone involved in SheWore go out to Philip Hughes friends, family and Sean Abbott.
RIP Philip Hughes.