Firstly I have to say, CAN WE PLAY IN MANCHESTER EVERY WEEK!. Again we went there with many people doubting that we could win, and we won. We put in another of those well drilled performances, where we defended as a team and broke on the opposition.
This is Arsenal’s best tactic. When teams attack us we usually have enough pace to hurt teams through counter attacking. When teams defend deep against us we sometimes find it hard to break teams down. Defend deep is what Man Utd did do at The Emirates. This time it was a must win for them so they gave it there all in trying to win. Much of our good play was down to our midfield axis of Santi Cazorla and Coquelin. This is definitely a partnership to be developed.
Man Utd are not the side they once were, but beating them at their own backyard is always fun. I love our rivalry with them, this year its as if we have once again over taken them. Lets hope it continues.
So this win leaves us in the semi final of the FA Cup, probably facing another season in the top four and also probable elimination from Europe. I think the new target should be to win the FA Cup, finish as close to Manchester City and possibly win the game in Monaco. The later will be hard but I feel we can achieve all three. What do you think?
Yesterday’s masterclass just reminded us that Wenger still has some magic. It is another question if he still can come up with such a performance over a prolonged period now. What it has done is to give everyone hope again.
Walking into work after a big game felt so good. Lets hope it continues. For me there are more questions to be answered after yesterdays showing.
1. Will Wenger still invest in a defensive midfielder/defender?
2. Will Ozil and Wilshere ever get back into our best XI?
For the first question I feel that Coquelin is adequate for what we need. It was the kind of performance that signalled to everyone in football that he can lead a midfield as well play a disciplined defensive role. I hate comparisons but an early comparison when he first broke into the Arsenal squad a few years back was made to Makelele. Yesterday I felt that he was playing as if he was Matic or Roy Keane. Yes I know it is silly to compare.
He adds so much more than Flamini and also adds power to what Arteta lacks. It also has to be said that Cazorla and Ramsey helped him out a lot also yesterday. I hope Wenger buys another defensive midfielder as great teams need to good ones.
In my opinion Arsenal do need another centre back. A title competing side will always need four. I do not count Monreal as a valid option at centre back neither the injured Debuchy. Lets hope one win does not club Wenger’s judgement in this window.
As for the second question, it is clear we now have a squad. Players like Ozil, Wilshere, Rosiky, Welbeck and Walcott are perfect to have on the bench. For me Santi Cazorla and Oxlade Chamberlain have done enough for the time being to keep thee players out the side. All these options are great news for Arsenal. When everyone is fit, I feel we have the best attacking force in the league.
What is clear is that I am again excited for the league to restart. On a lighter note I heard a fan on the radio today asking why we never sent Flamini on loan to Charlton as both Song and Coquelin have both come back better.