“He (Bendtner) is really maturing and what people don’t always expect is that the player at 18 is not what the player will be at 20 or 22. But he’s grown up, he wants to do well and I believe he can be a promising striker. It’s always difficult to give a rest to (Robin) Van Persie but he (Bendtner) was on the edge tonight and I felt he was playing with fire. Sometimes I play them together, many times, but Nicklas is slowly growing in the game and he had a good game tonight.” It was such a relief to get an early goal. The young Denmark international received the ball in open play from a corner via Denilson and moved into the box passed two players and struck a left footed shot on the floor low and hard and put us ahead. The lead only lasted 3 minutes as a free kick was awarded to the home side (should never have been) and the ball sneaked under Eboue (should not have moved) and into the back of the net. We restored our lead 7 minutes before the end of the game when Arshavin hit a free kick into the box and Kolo Toure headed home. And a minute before half time, Nikki B got his second, a quite exquisite strike. Kolo Toure picked up the ball around the centre circle area and floated a great ball to the path of the striker, who dispatched it from an acute angle, full belt on the volley. Awesome.
“Bendtner is improving from month to month. He will be better every three, six months. He has shown tonight he has the talent to be an Arsenal player. That is the right way to mature. I liked his presence. I liked his determined attitude and the way he took people on. That shows he has improved.”So we managed to score a few goals, albeit conceded a sloppy one, but yesterday was one of the best games I’ve been at. The support was excellent, the team had some fire in them and it’s the first time I really thought we’d actually win.
“We kept going and there’s a very healthy, strong spirit in this team. We’ve come along and won the game without any doubt about the spirit and attitude of the players. It was a test again. (Their goal) gave a lot of courage to West Brom and it was down to us to find an opening again and we did that. We like to attack and we had chances to score maybe four or five, but West Brom are a good side going forward.”The only major downside of the game was the injury to Kolo Toure who has picked up a calf strain. We may see Song and Djourou partnered for the Burnley game with Gallas and Toure hopefully back for Roma… Okay, Man City, over to you, sort out those boys from Birmingham tonight! ————————————————————— West Brom: Carson, Zuiverloon, Meite, Donk, Robinson, Morrison (Menseguez 72), Greening, Koren, Brunt (Filipe Teixeira 72), Moore, Fortune. Subs Not Used: Kiely, Hoefkens, Cech, Kim, Borja Valero. Booked: Koren, Brunt, Meite, Donk. Goals: Brunt 7. Arsenal: Almunia, Sagna, Toure (Diaby 46), Djourou, Clichy, Eboue (Ramsey 67), Song Billong, Denilson, Nasri (Merida 83), Bendtner, Arshavin. Subs Not Used: Fabianski, Van Persie, Vela, Gibbs. Goals: Bendtner 4, Toure 38, Bendtner 44. Att: 26,244 Ref: Steve Tanner (Somerset).]]>