Great team work, good fighting spirit – Thats Arsenal for you this year.
Once again Arsenal beat their North London rivals in a brilliant comeback game that saw the resilience and the spirit of the squad that Wenger has been talking for some time now. It was once again a brilliantly orchestrated performance from Fabregas who was the man-of-the-match. This win coupled with Liverpool and Chelsea draw means that Arsenal will be on top of the table for the first time this season, two points clear of Liverpool, Chelsea and Man U.
The best player on display was the wonderful Spaniard who is winning rave reviews for his play making, assists and goal scoring this year. He has so far scored in 5 of the last 6 matches (EPL & Champions League included). He was back with a stunning 25 metre shot which once again proved lethal against Robinson (who otherwise came up with some 3-4 good saves to deny Arsenal in the first half) . Fabregas took the free kick which was headed in by Adebayor and also gave the assist for the third goal. He is genuine class and if there is another 20 yr old who is more talented than him and plays football, please let me know.
Adebayor has this tendency to score in the crucial games and especially against the Spurs. He missed a sitter earlier when Sagna covered a lot of ground and pulled one back inside the box for someone to slot it in. That someone turned out to be Adebayor and what does he do, chip it over the bar. Disappointment and disbelief was written all over his face. He had to score at some point of time as Arsenal was creating so many chances. And score he did when he rose to head the ball in from a fabregas free-kick. Its great to see headed goals scored by Arsenal.
His second strike and the 3rd goal for the team was an even brilliant shot. He was standing with his back to the goal outside the box and Fabregas slotted it to his right. A brilliant first touch which made the ball rise towards his left side and he jumped and turned and blasted it past the hapless Robinson who o be fair could do nothing about it. It will be one for the cameras I am sure. Brilliant stuff from Adebayor.
Asia viewers of ESPN could see the match only from 30 minutes due to the overlapping finish of the first match (Everton vs Man U, which was quite sad). I was wearing my Arsenal tee (Henry old one, yet to get a Fabregas tee in Malaysia) and follwing the score on BBC website. That Gareth Bale goal made me miss a beat as I was a bit sceptical of this Arsenal team away from home, especially in a high-tension derby match and when you are a goal down so early in the game against a team which has got some decent strike power you have to be worried. But how this team is all about come-backs and winning in style was proven yet again. To be fair to Tottenham, they had their chances and did not take it. Bent was substituted and he missed a easy chance. I mean if this is what £16.5 mil buy can offer, I am glad we don’t spend millions on such atrocious players. Berbatov, Keane everyone had their chances but Almunia, Toure all came to the rescue.
Toure had a wonderful game overall. How many times have you see him getting forward when we are a goal down, trying to do something out of nothing, bringing in his aggressive instincts into the game. He is one solid player at the back and in situations like this all over the park. Diaby started the match and had a decent outing but he should have scored when Hleb put him in with one of the easiest of chances. He rattled the cross bar. He should have done better. Rosicky’s introduction in the 56th minute was another change in the balance of the game. He was instrumental in getting the team forward and linked with Fabregas for his goal. His involvement with the game is getting better and better. Hleb had a wonderful game beating a lof of Spurs with his dribbling skills. He is very under-rated for his skills. Denilson missed an easy chance on the right side. Almunia made a good save coming forward to Keane but he was caught out of position against Berbatov and should thank Toure for stopping a goal.
Having played this match without a centre-back, Giberto had to don the roe of one. He was caught out of position couple of times but those chances were not taken by Spurs. So much was the Arsenal domination that, when they crossed the centre line the commentator was saying ” Finally they get to cross the half”. It was one of the best matches that Arsenal played this season and should do them a world of good.
There has been lots of remarks coming from different circles on the Spurs performance. Here are a few of them :
Tottenham possess a meagre four points from a possible 24, and as one disgruntled fan said as he headed for the exit: “That works out at about £10m a point.”
As one ex-player said afterwards: “You wouldn’t trust this lot to walk your dog – they can’t hold on to a lead.”
Does this win make Arsenal genuine title-contenders? Doubtful. This young side has shown lot of spirit and consistency, but we are yet to be tested away from home against the big three or even the likes of Everton, Portsmouth & even Balckburn. So till that happens I think this team should play the way they know to play this sport. Arsenal is the most exciting team to watch in the Premier League by miles. They have been doing that last year too, but this year they are finishing well, scoring from the mid-field. This is genuine good stuff. And if they remain in the top 2 or 3 after Christmas, then we have a chance at the title. Till then be entertained.
Arsene Wenger said after the match:
“It shows our spirit and belief and I was very happy with our game and our mental strength and togetherness. We have showed them all again.
“Having lost Thierry (Henry), it has helped the belief and mental strength of the team to start well. We never forget Thierry but we know that the team is blossoming and growing.
“There is something in the side; quality, of course, but also mental strength.
“I hope the good form continues. At half-time I could not complain because all we did wrong was not to take our chances. I felt that if we kept the pace high, we would have a good chance of winning.”