Aston Villa: The Day After

Yesterday’s defeat to Villa is about as refreshing as a pot of boiling water thrown maliciously into your lap. After watching the media and gooners alike fall over themselves in the wake of the wins to Manchester United and Wigan, it seemed as if the good times were back at the Emirates. It appears the prospect of our first team having consistency is about as realistic as a bottle-inhabiting genie taking residence in your house.

With each passing week, it is getting harder to refrain from trite sayings from bitter and pessimistic fans, but as the saying goes, if you can’t beat them then join them.

This team is about as motivated in the smallish games as a thug is at a meeting of nuns. They have the urgency of a sloth. Why they do not find urgency in their passing is both a question that evokes confusion as well as disgust. The game yesterday starkly reveals some changes that need to be made in the first team

1. Manuel Almunia is not the answer

Buffon would have saved the second goal. So would have Casillas, Frey, Cech, hell probably even Lehmann. Manuel Almunia simply is not a world-class keeper, nor would he ever be. If Wenger is so hell-bent on producing a team full of youngsters, then drop the bleached wannabe-rockstar keeper and put in a player who can be world-class- Lukasz Fabianski. He has shown that he can make blinding saves. He has undoubted potential and the only way he will realize his potential is to be played. The worst he can do is allow goals like yesterday to happen. He would be nothing but an improvement.

2. Cesc is not an Arsenal player anymore

What’s that you say, he’s not one of ours? To that, I say in his mind he no longer wants to be on the field. If he still desires to serve Arsenal Football Club, it certainly is not as a footballer, perhaps he could become a janitor? Our once lauded, once world-class young prodigy clearly has his mind elsewhere. It does not take a seasoned fan to realize that. To think that he is simply tired or distrusting of Denilson is wishful thinking. Replay his close-range shot at Friedel which was barely tipped over the bar. Notice his reaction- it is not one of annoyance or the oft-seen grimace because he knows he should have scored, it is of a player who really cannot be bothered anymore.

3. Bendtner is not an Arsenal player

Nicklas Bendnter is a digression in progress. He gets worse by the game. I would much rather have Jay Simpson in the team than this guy. He is never going to make it here. Wenger should make the hard decision now and get rid of him. He will eventually stunt the growth of another up-and-coming striker, be it Simpson or someone else. He was pathetic today. He would not get in this Villa team, let alone ours. Then again, who’s to say we’re better than them anymore?

I’m an optimist, I believe in trust and support. I believe in Wenger and trust his judgement. I do not, however, believe in this collection of players. Nasri, although not fully adjusted to the premier league, is a winner and fighter. So is Clichy, Sagna, Vela, Walcott, Ramsey, Toure, Wilshere, and even Gallas. Diaby is not. Fabregas, right now, is not. Almunia is so far from being a fighter he should take up interpretive dance. I have faith in Wenger that he will eventually pull a clever rabbit out the hat, not this motley assortment of half-arsed overpaid wannabe winners. They will never win anything until some real changes are made.


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