Stoke City FC
1 - 0
J. Walters (PG) 76'
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The title of this post was is the entirety of a tweet from @SandraHelena39 posted in the aftermath of a 0-1 loss to Stoke. My immediate response was “I’m still looking down on it”.
That wasn’t the the right response nor was it honest.
The truth is I’d be happy if Arsenal wins the FA Cup, and as of writing it seems the most likely avenue of ending the current trophy drought. However The FA Cup simply does not hold much personal importance for me. Let me explain as best as I can.
As some of you may know I wasn’t brought up on English football. In my youth football was something you played, not something you watch. The 1st televised game I can remember was 1982 World Cup finals. Not that I can remember anything of the match itself. I stood in the veranda of one of my more fortunate neighbours peeking thorough the window trying to get a glimpse of the most important football match of the day on a small TV set. From that distance to say that you saw anything was laughable. More likely what I saw was more influenced by the commentary than anything else. At the final whistle we were off to the “savannah” to recreate that match, and everyone was Paolo Rossi. No twitter here.
By the time I could watch televised football on a regular basis, it was Dutch, Italian, & Brazilian football. Of course I knew of English football and I was always looking out for Arsenal results, but I had no emotional attachment yet. When I became truly exposed to English football and emotionally attached to Arsenal it still wasn’t the romance of the cup. If anything by then the Champions league was the big deal. You win you league and you win the Champions league, everything else is a bonus. So no the FA Cup has never a significant trophy for me.
There is something else.
I don’t really care whether or not Arsenal win a trophy!
My biggest concern is whether or not we win the current game, and how well we play. When we win a trophy I will be happy for the players, it will be the reward of playing consistently well over the course of a season. However it’s a reward for the players, as fans we can bask in the glory of supporting a trophy winning team but this is just as fleeting as a win on the weekend.—Ok maybe it lasts a little bit longer.
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Put it this way. Winning a trophy does not reduce the my pain in subsequent defeats nor does it enhance the pleasure of subsequent wins.
So will I be looking down at the FA Cup? No I take that back. If we win it I’ll enjoy it. Probably more than anything else that taunt will finally cease.
Today I’m not upset because the chances of winning that trophy has been reduced.
I’m angry because of the way we lost. I’m angry at the manager for his approach to the match. I’m angry because too many players underperformed, I’m angry because I did not enjoy watching my team today. We won’t win the league not because of today’s result, but because we have had too many games like today. Some we’ve won, some we’ve drawn, but playing the way we did as often as we do, means end of season reward is less likely.