This is not the morning the red half of North London expected but many may not be surprised. After Arsenal skinned through the Baggies in the previous round, they were handed an clash with Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea. The day came last night and the result tastes sour to every gooner.
Arsenal fielded a side that had the captain that is eyeing a move in January, a Dane that has not started at the emirates in over 2 years, a Finnish-English Lad, a Japanese that is as fast as lightning and a third choice Pole goalie. Chelsea had a lot of physical players who are international stars itching to have a feel of first team action. Mikel Essien and Mikel Obi seem forgotten, so also were 90% of the blue side.
The odds were against Arsenal and it turned out as bookmarkers expected: A Chelsea Win. Jenkinson gifted Azpiculeta the first goal while Mata added salt to Arsenal sore in the second half with a lovely goal. The introduction of Ozil and Giroud was “medicine after death”. The gunners would rue Ryo’s missed chance, Bendtner’s inactivity and Jenkinson’s Vulnerability.
Wenger’s Unbeaten Run
The Arsenal folklore is a-washed with the famous 49 match unbeaten streak but Wenger’s streak over Mourinho should be waved as a banner anytime the two managers meet. In 9 meetings inclusive of last night, Wenger has NEVER beaten Jose Mourinho. The Frenchman had managed just 4 draws and lost 5 conceding 13 and scoring just 6 in all competitions. Last night was a chance to change the direction of this run but the run would continue until we meet in the Premier League later.
Chances Not Taken
In fairness, the team could have won last night IF they took their chances. Chelsea took theirs albeit from an error by Jenkinson. The Blues look stronger but the Gunners were slick in passes but were always let down in the final third by their execution or positioning. Ryo had the best chance when the game was goalless. Rosicky’s defense-splitting passes were not picked by either of Ryo or Bendtner. When Bendtner had his ball on his feet with the goal at his mercy he opted to lay the ball for Ramsey in the second half, Ramsey was swarmed on like bees by the Blue Army. Even Jenkinson had a chance to let a rip off his boots but his oblongata told him he wasn’t a striker thus he cut back and that chance fell away.
Jenkinson could have done better for the first goal. Fabianski may have responded faster but according to Vermaelen, both goals were avoidable;
“The first goal is always important, you always want to take the lead in such a big game. It’s quite disappointing they got a 1-0 lead, it was a goal we could avoid – I think both goals [were avoidable
This was an opportunity for the 2nd string gunners to make a claim for the first 11 shirts but it seems they may remain in the shadows forever. Fabianski may have done better with the goals, but picking up two balls from your net when your competitor is ahead but in club and country? That is more or less “Forever in Szc Shadows”. Vermaelen’s performance wasn’t as bad as many but sure below Kos and Per. He would need to bring eggs to the bench to see if he could hatch some.
Bendtner was a passerby photographing the Blues’ defense, just looking around. I expected more from the Dane after so many criticism from fans. If only he had faced the goal and scored that goal instead of laying it back for Ramsey. Ryo was so feather-weighted that he was easily robbed of the ball. Was he timid or awed by the opposition? And for Jenkenson: I don’t care if he has been a fan since before he was even born, but such display would keep him in the shadows of Sagna and any new RB. enough of this jerking performances. Reminds me of the 8-2 nightmare.
My Best Two Arsenal Players
Tomas Rosicky put up a man of the match performance slicking and turning to evade the blue shirts around. His defense splits were not picked by the Arsenal front men. The Czech international is the oldest man in Arsenal but runs and plays like a 23yr old (10yrs younger). It is high time, Wenger adds another two years to his Arsenal contract. I wouldn’t like to see fans that would say he is playing for a contract: He Loves Arsenal and wants to retire here. keep it up Rozza.
My 2nd best player in the red shirt was a rock in defense. Laurent Koscienly tackled and intercepted and even initiated attacks. Arsenal should have been 3-0 down after Ramires rammed pass Vermaelen and shot at goal, but Kos D’Boss stopped the ball on the line before it was cleared away for a goal kick. Vermaelen would envy the rise of the kos with grief. Per and Kos partnership would definitely keep Verm away. My best two Arsenal players were above average and distant away from the rest.
One down, Three more to go
So our chase on four fronts have been jenked away by Mata and Azpi and the much confident Arsenal side now have just 3 trophies to vie for: The EPL, The UEFA CL and the FA Cup. We are just at the tail of October, still far from February!! What will happen by February? The EPL continues by Saturday with Liverpool visiting our Emirates. I wouldn’t mind Arsenal playing their remaining matches all away since we win away better.
We must move ahead of this defeat and win Suarez and his gang come Saturday. We are wounded but not dead. We can still the Treble.
On the Nigerian soccer-sphere, the Golden Eaglets smashed Iran 4-1 in their 2nd round game at the FIFA U-17 World cup in Al Ain in UAE. Days after defeating their neighbors Iraq, the Nigerians went haywire once more with Iheanacho grabbing a goal. I hear Arsenal is scouting him. We face Uruguay on Saturday in the Quarter Final.
Have a Blue day.