Van Persie(22), Vermaelen(39), Arteta(74)
3 - 0
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West Bromwich Albion
Arsenal won again, this time an easy 3-0 win over what was a poor WBA side. It says something about the match that the biggest talking points in the post-match twitter analysis was about the classiness/tackiness of those banners.
The fact remains that this is three more points in a season that was supposed to finally put the nails in the Arsenal coffin. One where we were to drop out of the top four or even completely out of any European competition. Yet Arsenal are 3 points better off this season compared to the same fixtures of the last.
Last season a similarly poor West Brom side put us to the sword inflicting a severe wound in our title aspirations with a 2-3 reverse in the same fixture. A game that featured Gaël Clichy and that Nasri fellow. This was the type of game that no matter the opposition it still takes discipline to win. A discipline that was severely lacking last season but which is slowly coming to the fore this time around.
Being able to dispatch West Brom with such ease will no doubt add to the ever growing confidence of the team, bouyed by the last premier league outing it is not hard to see what a good run of results can do for a team’s mentality.
Passes are more incisive, players making runs where a few months ago they would have hesitated, same for passes. Defensively the team is more aware of their responsibility, and with the ever improving Jenkinson — Another impressive performance by the young man. Always full of energy, the best crossing in the team and not too shabby defensively either. — the back five is now a bit more respectable. Vermaelen back from injury means the Centre Back position is a bit of a positive headache for Monsieur Wenger.
Thomas Vermaelen is the type of player that does well against teams like West Brom but his forays forward can also be a liability in other matches. That’s where Mertesacker will come in, games where a calm head, experience, and a better ability to read the game is needed.
The helter-skelter pace of most premier league games will take some getting used to by the German, Although he has showed that he can manage, he has still to adjust to the pacing of the Premier League. No doubt that Per is up to the task, the good thing is that fitness has now afforded us the opportunity to be patient.
One thing that I’m not sure about is the attitude of the manager towards winning the title. I understand that he is wary of putting too much pressure on the team. He has put himself at fault for last seasons collapse, by telling the players the could win everything.
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This time around he is saying that we are too far being to contemplate a title challenge, yet he himself has won titles in the past whilst being even further behind. Maybe it is more to do with the strength of the current leader rather than the weakness of his own team.
Not only do we have to win points but we have to depend on City to drop quite a few, and that does not seem likely at the moment. However what we can do is keep winning.
There won’t be any Arsenal football for the next 2 weeks, let’s all hope that everyone returns fit from their international excursions.
That’s my lot for today. Thanks for stopping by, please leave your thoughts in the comments section below or @wengerball on twitter. Until next time… Forward.