I have made better decisions in life.
It is 17°C in Alicante this morning. Today’s highs will be 26°C. Arsenal fans are gathering in the Spanish city for a couple of days of sunshine boozing before getting a 2 hour train north to Valencia on Thursday for the game.
I turned down the chance to go to the game. Most of my mates flew out Monday lunchtime. They have been sunning themselves for 2 days already.
The reason why I turned it down? I had tickets for today’s ODI against Pakistan at the Oval.
So instead of waking up this morning in lovely Spanish sunshine, I am looking at of my window at grey clouds, could air and rain until 4pm. Cold and wet. It must be the start of the cricket season in England.
Earlier this year I spent a couple of weeks in Antigua watching England get thrashed by the West Indies. I did not care about the result, it was a cracking bit of time away.
The Vauxhall Oval is going to be very different to the Sir Viv Richards Stadium that I sat in earlier this year. Instead of looking for a bit of shade to sit in, I will probably be looking for somewhere to stay dry.
Arsenal have not been great this season. That is an understatement. And as Liverpool showed last night, the tie is not over.
Valencia did not look great at Arsenal. There only threat was from set pieces. But at 3-1 and with Valencia having the away goal; the 1st goal is key.
Wining the Europa League would turn Unai Emery’s 1st season from a tough one to a trophy laden, successful one.
What it will also do is parachute Arsenal back in the Champions League.
For obvious reasons, the Arsenal transfer budget is not yet finalised. There is plenty of money available with the increase in commercial deals and players leaving on a free. These two factors free up £60million a year to be spent on transfer fees, wages, bonuses, agent fees, etc.
Win the Europa League and qualify for the Champions League could add an extra £40million to that pot for next season.
Tomorrow is a huge night.
I just wish I was out there instead of getting the waterproofs out of the loft for a day at the cricket.
ps: Whilst I am talking about the sunshine, have you bought the banana beach towel yet?