Sunday, September 14, 2008

Lovely wins at Blackburn and Zagreb cap a great week for Arsenal and England.

Being in the North-West, where as Match of the Day so often points out 'we struggle' (really, we didn't last season?), we delivered an absolute tonking to Blackburn, and a humbling lesson to new Prem manager Paul Ince.

Theo, after his and England's incredible performance in Zagreb, was bursting with confidence. Some of his passing was absolutely sensational; he ran with his head up past players who simply didn't know what to do with him. His assist for Robin's first goal was a thing of beauty.

After years of criticism about Arsenal's lack of contribution to the England team, will the press be willing to eat a bit of humble pie, now Arsne's tutelage has got Theo firing on all cylinders, and after Jack Wilshere, at only 16 years old and a total product of the Arsenal youth system, made his premiership debut? I doubt it.

Elsewhere, Ade has clearly re-joined the party after a couple of games without a goal. His first was clearly the best, when he beat Robinson at his near bost from a excellent cross from Denilson.

Eboue played well, even if he did manage to injure himself diving to win a penalty for our third goal. It was also good to see Aaron Ramsey get his premiership debut, and to get an assist with a defence splitting ball late on.

Overall then, job done. After our stutter at Fulham we've looked excellent ever since, scoring eleven goals with no reply in our last three games. You can talk about the quality of the opposition, but you can only beat what's put in front of you, and we did just that. Nice.

So one tough away match down, two to go. Kiev, will be a hard trip, and I think a point would be a decent way to open our CL campaign, especially as Clichy, Nasri and Eboue are all doubts for the game, which could see Silvestre make his, ahem, 'long-awaited' debut.

A lovely win to cap a lovely week, which saw one of the best England performances I've seen since the 1990 world cup. England actually passed the ball. Our pass completion rate was something like 86%. And the team had balance. An attacking central midfielder, next to a defensive one; a big, imposing centre-forward next to a crafty, 'in-the-hole' striker. Wingers which actually had pace, after years of seeing Beckham act as a glorified 'special-teams' player, as the Americans might say.

Well done Capello. Let's hope he doesn't lose his nerve and put Owen back in the side, or try and play Lampard and Gerrard together again.

Also, John Terry got sent off yesterday, and, as things stand, the Spuds lie bottom of the table. Bliss. Let's enjoy it.


Anonymous said...

Kiev will certainly be a test. On the upside we won´t have to go there in the november or december so the weather won´t be a problem at least.

Anonymous said...

only place to mention spuds. cheers ~

Anonymous said...

Eboue did not dive, the defender caught Eboue's trailing leg with his right leg, causing Eboue to land ackwardly. Don't be so biased. Watch the incident carefully.

Anonymous said...

absolute balls. eboue definitely dived. he was clearly on the way down before any contact was made