Saturday, 21 May 2011

A look back on the positives...

No matter what happens tomorrow, let's try and look back on the positives this season rather than depressing ourselves about the negatives and the pain from the past season.

If we finish fourth it will be a massive disappointment, but I know we are so close to being the best. If we finish three places off the top below Man City it won't look that way but this team is very close. I think there were two moments this season that have had a massive impact on the end of our season, the Carling Cup final and Bendtner's miss at Barcelona. If we'd have won the League Cup or beaten Barcelona on aggregate like we were incredibly close to doing (not that anyone outside Arsenal ever mentions this) then I think the last 2 and a half months would have panned out very differently.

Our team just needs one or two additions like Scott Parker and Chris Samba to jump to the next level, they will make us a better team, especially defensively. Also they will be two leaders in the team and will add more mental strength and ability to see out games and grind out wins especially in the run in when you need these sort of players to win you games. We will improve at defending set pieces too and I think that almost every aspect of our game (especially our weaknesses) will be improved because of them. That's why we should sign them.

So what were the positives? Despite how everyone likes to paint the doom and gloom picture when it comes to The Arsenal, there have been lots of positives and highlights this season. Here is a list of my highlights:

1. Arsenal 2-1 Barcelona

A terrific night, amazing atmosphere and probably the best night of my short time as an Arsenal fan. A late turn-around over one of the best teams on the planet and a team I hate because of their dis-respectful off- field comments about Arsenal and Fabregas. Also arguably the best performance of the season.

2. Arsenal 3-1 Chelsea

Another great night that broke the whoodoo Chelsea and Man Utd had over us, a welcome win and maginificent performance, arguably better than the Barcelona performance. The timing of the goals made it even better as the 3-0 lead shortly after half time sent us into ecstasy. A great atmosphere too.

3. Tottenham 1-4 Arsenal (CC)

A nice bit of revenge on our bitter rivals and my first Arsenal win at SHL. And it made my first day at college the next day more enjoyable.

4. Man City 0-3 Arsenal

A game I was very nervous about and a game where class beat wealth. Very good performance and satisfying win that put us back into a good position in the title race.

5. Blackburn 1-2 Arsenal

A game I went to and sat in the Arsenal section and a very good, gritty and determined performance from the boys. And it was a more impressive win then as BR were a much better team under Allardyce. Sweet revenge for our late season defeat there last season where I was also attending.

6. Arsenal 1-0 Man Utd

A beautiful reprieve after a difficult 2 months as an Arsenal supporter. Always nice to get one over Man Utd and our first win over them since November 08. Another short whoodoo broken.

7.  Everton 1-2 Arsenal

Another game I was in attendance for, sat near 3000 ish very noisy Arsenal supporters for a professional, stylish but also steely win at a hard place to do so. Made even better by Chelsea's shock home defeat to Sunderland later that afternoon.

8. Arsenal 2-1 Fulham

After returning from Christmas shopping and listening to the radio anxiously I returned home, flicked on football focus and with a few minues left the in form Samir Nasri scored a delightful winning goal in a great christmassy win!

9. Arsenal 3-0 Ipswich

The win that sent us to the Carling Cup final with three very relieving second half goals.

10. Leeds 1-3 Arsenal

As a Leeds inhabitant this was a victory of pride against my locals, and one of special personal feeling to me.

I don't know if I've missed any there that should have been in the top ten, hold on, I've just realised I left out Villa 2-4 Arsenal, which would go just above Fulham and into 8th, as walking to the Everton game I checked my Dad's phone to find out Jack Wilshere had settled the win with a fourth goal. A very good win with some good goals that saw us move top. Oh and the Newcastle away 4-0 win in the CC, I was there and a very enjoyable night and good win. I'll put that just ahead of the Ipswich win.

Soon, I'll talk about the positives of the squad, such as the emergence of Wilshere and Szczesny and the form of Nasri, Walcott and van Persie.

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