I've been sidetracked with the Tribute to David Rocastle, a truly gifted player, I hope you’ve all had a chance to read and check out the Rocky7 site. Then I got sidetracked with today’s link with Matías Emilio Delgado. But I’m focused now and here’s my views on all the things that are circulating the World of Arsenal…
The Bolton Miracle
Let’s start with Saturday’s game and what a recovery… for those of you who missed it and don’t know the score or the game. We were 2-0 down and one man down at half time, but stormed back in the second half to score 3 goals and win the game.
It was one of those games where everything seemed to go against us and one of those games that takes it out of you, but the players showed spirit, energy and ability to come back and we are all so proud of the boys.
Half Time Team Talk
Both Gallas and Toure have talked about the “special half time talk”… and from what I’ve managed to gather, I’ve tried to capture some of it…
“We can do it, don’t give up. We have nothing. Go back on the pitch and fight. No regrets. Pass the ball, play, believe and give 100%.”
If a good manager is judged on his tactics and team talks, then Arsene is truly great. His positive attitude is inspirational.
Robin Van Persie is back and is a player we’ve missed since Eduardo got injured. He is slowly gaining match practice and slotted away a penalty against Bolton and positionally was sound even if he missed a few volleys.
It was one of those games, like in pro-evo, when you’re playing in the Masters League and draw to Fulham and Bolton and fall 3 points behind to United, then you have United away and win 5-0. Okay, I’ve sidetracked again, but I’m hoping Van Persie goes mental against Liverpool and scores loads. Kinda of similar to my analogy, he’s missed a few against lower opposition, but will come good against a big team… p.s. the pro-evo story is a true story!
Robin Van Persie believes that this win can kick start our feint title bid.
“We’d taken four points in five games since Birmingham. That is not enough for us. We knew we had to win this game and we did. Before the game, when everyone sat together we said that this was a massive game and we could not afford to lose points. And what a game. We were 2-0 down at Bolton, down to 10 men, it was raining, it could not have been worse. After an hour it seemed just so far, so far but we showed a big, big strength. It is a little miracle that we won the game.”
But how hard do we make it for ourselves? I tell you!
Arsenal vs Liverpool Match Preview
Talking about Liverpool, the big game arrives tomorrow and it’s going to be a special day. It’s the pinnacle of our season so far and promises to be one of the most exciting ties at the Emirates… I’d gladly take a repeat of last season’s 3-0 victory.
Arsenal vs Liverpool in the Champions League, it’s sounds a bit unreal doesn’t it. Last season, I had a the privilege of a season ticket and the Champions League games were just way too exciting… the anthem sends a shiver down your spine. Knowing that the opposition is of the highest quality and only one of the best performances will win you the game.
One of the most rememberable games at the Emirates in the CL was when we played Hamburg. In a game where only a win would do, we found ourselves 1 -0 down to a van der Vaart goal and had to perform one of typical Arsenal style comebacks. Robin Van Persie scoring after the break and then two goals in the final seven minutes from Eboue (yes, he actually did something productive) and a Theo inspired third from Julio Baptista. What a night.
But let’s do things the right way tomorrow, let’s go 3-0 up rather than 1-0 down.
As far as I am aware, there has been no injury news from the weekend, so tomorrow, we will see a fairly strong game. I expect Arsene to keep the back four the same with Toure playing at right back. With Diaby suspended on Saturday, I’m sure he’ll start as well tomorrow and Hleb on the right. Adebayor will be restored to the starting line up, but I think Theo will remain on the bench. Theo’s impact of late has been awesome and although pushing for a start, I think he has the ability to change games now and give us the impact we need.
I think the starting line up will be a 4-4-2 in the home leg…
With Lehmann, Hoyte, Eboue, Song, Gilberto, Walcott and Bendtner on the bench.
Liverpool will surely play the same team that started against Everton, which sees a front four of Torres, Babel, Kuyt and Gerrard. If Flamini keeps Gerrard busy, then Clichy and Toure should have Babel and Kuyt at bay and Gallas and Senderos can surely deal with Torres…
This game is so damn exciting!
A more educated preview tomorrow…
Robin Van Persie has been talking to the official web site on how the team want to win for him. VP knows what’s it’s like to be out with injury.
“Eduardo is a fantastic guy and a fantastic player so I am just thinking of winning for him. Everyone feels sorry for him. It is just a sad thing. Unfortunately this is life, we have to get our stuff together and win games. But personally I am still thinking about winning these games for him.”
The club have also released a statement about his progress, and Eddie has had his cast removed. Good news.
As planned, Eduardo visited a specialist this morning.
“X-rays show that he is making satisfactory progress and the full cast on his left leg was removed and has been replaced with an air boot for protection. Eduardo’s road to recovery is on schedule and he will now start his rehabilitation programme.”
Fingers crossed, but all sounds positive.
News Round Up
In other news… we’ll be the team that opens the VfB Stuttgart stadium, dubbed the Mercedez Benz stadium in a friendly game. The game is booked for Wednesday 30th July and more details will come soon…
Carlos Vela played 76 minutesagainst Getafe on the weekend and Osasuna won 2-0 to continue their impressive run. Carlos had a decent game, but found himself marked well. Good experience for the youngster. I’m sure he’ll be marked aggressively when he starts plying his trade in the premiership.
Okay, time’s running out, so I’ll stop now. More tomorrow…
I’m hungry… mmmm Jaffa Cakes…]]>