Thursday, November 02, 2006

Thoughts about Moscow after five-a-side football

So, today at work was the big game: one side of the office vs. the other. Only the crème de la crème were selected. Or those who could be bothered to turn up. Needless to say, Goonerboy's side triumphed. Yet, on this extremely cold evening, some very broad comparisons with the game last night struck me.

I started by drifting around up-front and, in the course of the game, had around 10-12 shots on goal. I scored one. The keeper saved half, I hit the post twice; the ball did everything apart from go in. One chance when a not very fast Goonerboy had somehow skinned his marker, then flashed a shot across the goal only to see it bounce off the inside of the post seemed to sum up my performance. Some days you just can't get a goal. It wasn't until the last goal of the game that I finally put one in [I nutmegged the keeper. Heh.]

And, so it was for Arsenal last night. Except a, er, slightly higher level of football. We were totally, almost embarrassingly dominant. We carved through a very good Muscovite defence time and again. But the ball just wouldn't go in. Fab and Rosicky missed open goals; RvP had a header than even I expected him to put in; Gilbs forced a terrific save from the Moscow keeper; Thierry had two or three chances that he would normally slot home. I, personally, don't think we over-complicated matters; on another day we would have won 4-0. It wasn't the same as the, say Boro or Everton matches. We didn't have chances last night. We had certified goals that we just couldn't realise. If we play like that again, it won't be the same and we'll win.

My message would be: we are on the right track. The only major concern is about Henry's slight difficulty in adapting to his new role in the team as a central striker rather than a winger. Having said I preferred 4-5-1, maybe 4-4-2 would be better, because Thierry needs to start from his customary left-wing position. He's struggling in his leading the line position - he hasn't got the physical presence to do what's currently being asked of him. [although can I just tell the idiot behind me who repeatedly moaned that 'we never won anything wiv 451 - Madrid? juve? Villareal? Old Trafford? Hmm???]

Still, we now need two results. We can't bank on beating Hamburg at home, but if we don't we don't deserve to go through. And a now extremely tricky tie in Porto where we may need to take something from the game.

It's like I said earlier in the season - we're 10% from perfection or disaster. But personally I think we're closer to the positive side. And certainly not close enough to disaster to warrant some of the negativity I heard from the crowd. Perspective please. Rosicky's head noticeably went down after his miss and we need to get behind the team, not on their backs, when our players are down. The negativity is no-where near as bad as some in the press are making out -but its not a complete figment of their imagination.

So, hopefully, goals will come. But mass panic will ensue if no goals against Hamburg.

5 comments:

Deise Gooner said...

The goals will come i have no doubt of that. And when they do someone is gonna get a right spanking. Lets hope its Cheslki eh.

Rupert Flares said...

Sometimes, whether you like it or not, you just have to hold your hands up and accept that it was just one of those games, get over it. If we all get behind the team on Sunday then we'll spank the Irons and we can all forget about Moscow. If you're one of those "shoot" morons, pack it in! It doesn't help anyone and just makes us real supporters look like twats!

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