When 80% of the crowd are still in the ground 5 minutes after the final whistle clapping the team off; you know something is going well.
We might have lost on Saturday but the fans recognised the effort those in red and white had put in.
From the first minute we were aggressive and quick in attack. Solid in defence.
Manchester City failed to register a shot on target in the first half. There first attempt on target was the penalty. Their 2nd was their winner.
It felt like watching a new Arsenal on Saturday. One that we have not seen for a decade or more.
We were hungry, chasing down every ball. Every player giving 100%.
In years gone by we would have all been moaning about Granit Xhaka giving away a clumsy penalty of Gabriel getting a 2nd yellow so soon after a first. But the majority recognised these were not mistakes by the players but by the ref.
Part of the post-match backing of players was due to the awful decision making by the referee. But I think even if Arsenal had fairly lost to Man City we would have cheered our performance.
Their eventual winning goal came in injury time after we had played with 10 men for half an hour. At the final whistle every Arsenal player collapsed with exhaustion. They had given their all for the club. For the shirt. And the fans recognised that.
Of course, there were some idiots on Twitter who went out of their way to criticise the performance. But these are the sort of people that never go to the game.
The fact the majority of the crowd stayed well after the final whistle highlights the vast difference between a match going fan and some middle aged fella who sits on his own watching the game on a dodgy stream tweeting throughout.
In the pub after the game everyone was saying the same thing. “Proud of the lads”.
There is something special happening over The Arsenal.
Fans seem closer to players than ever before. We have a lot of likelable lads – Ramsdale, White, Tierney, Saka, Smith Rowe, Gabriel.
The egos and attitudes are slowly being bombed out by the manager as he continues to build a squad that is young, hungry and relatable.
Players that do not arrive late for training in their blinged up Lamborghini. A captain that doesn’t only do match interviews after a good game. Players that are not more interested in building their own profile and brand at the expense of the club.
Mikel Arteta’s job for the rest of the season is now easy. Get the players to play at that same level of intensity for the 2nd half of the season and we will finish top 4.
For the first team in a long time, it feels the players and fans are together as one.
We now need to back this performance up.