Cleat Geeks

Cannon Conversation

Arsenal v Crystal Palace

1-1

Cech; Bellerin, Koscielny, Gabriel, Monreal; Coquelin, Elneny; Iwobi, Ozil, Sanchez; Welbeck

palace

Sunday 17th April 2016

Before we get into the game, I want to address the Arsene Wenger situation.

For 20 years of my life Arsene Wenger has been Arsenals manager, I am 28 so really he is all I have known. He has made me appreciate football and my love for Arsenal like no other, but now his reign is in serious danger of mirroring Ex-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher; loved by everyone at first, every decision spot on, moving the club onto bigger and better things (training, signings, stadium, etc) and then over time, becoming stubborn and refusing to change their ways when everyone around them has adapted and moved on and then suddenly you’re a shadow of what you once were. Thatcher was hounded out by the press and supporters in a very aggressive way, if you have seen Twitter this week, or ArsenalfanTV on YouTube, then you will see the same is happening to Arsene. A statue outside the ground he effectively built was a certainty when he retired, now the only certainty is the ever-growing tension and animosity from journalists and fans.

Arsene today confirmed he will see out his contract, which runs until the end of the 2017 season, and whilst I admire him for honoring his contract, I feel at the end of the season he should resign and perhaps take up a role in the boardroom, or maybe step away altogether because now, it’s bad – very bad. Tomorrow we play West Brom at home, a game I’m attending and I am not looking forward to the atmosphere- hardly any tickets have been sold, and there is even talk of a walkout being staged. All this just so the fans can be heard. Why has it come to this? Why is this great man and the greatest manager Arsenal has ever had suffering like this? Those questions, I’m afraid I can’t give an accurate answer to, as I feel he has brought it on himself. I really don’t like seeing this level of abuse being thrown his way, he no way deserves that, but this is 10 years of frustration finally coming to a head. Summer 2016 will certainly be an interesting one.

 

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Arsene Wenger

 

Onto the game and this result was too predictable. Arsenal had a chance to consolidate 3rd place (2nd is gone, if anyone thought we would catch Tottenham, you’re deluded) and blew it. Their play was flat, the atmosphere was non-existent, and to be honest it looked like a pre-season friendly. Arsenals first meaningful shot on goal was in the 24th minute, which was a wild strike from Elneny and our first effort on target was in fact Sanchez’s goal in the 45th minute… in a game in which we desperately needed to win, but throughout the team there was a serious lack of urgency.

The highlight of the half was the referee falling over which did more to entertain the crowd than the actual play. The teams came out for the second half and it was Crystal Palace who made the running early doors, forcing the play but that left gaps at the back for Arsenal to exploit and it led to a good opportunity for Sanchez, who flicked a header just wide from Ozil’s cross. The longer the game stayed at 1-0 you always felt Palace had a chance and those fears confounded when Bolasie cut in from the left and let fly with a shot that crept in the near post. Cech should have done better yes, but if the defenders had closed Bolasie down he wouldn’t have been able to shoot, and if one goal summed Arsenal up it was this, abject defending and bad goalkeeping coming together at once. Arsenal pressed for a winner but never looked likely to score, and it was Palace who finished the game stronger.

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Sanchez (17) celebrates his opener

In other news…

TheoWalcottTheo Walcott looks set to leave the club in the summer, strong rumors floating around that he has been instructed to look for another club.

Jack Wilshere stepped his recovery from injury, scoring in an u21’s game against Swansea, come back quick Jack we need you!!

Arsenal has targeted Riyad Mahrez as a top transfer target.

Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil are to be offered new deals, but any deal would include assurances Arsenal will spend big this summer.

 

Until next week.

 

 

 

 

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