Captain’s log star-date something something something point 2.
I’ve been sitting in my Captain’s chair for 8 hours staring at the stars on the viewscreen. I’m so bored. I want to start a war or something to spice things up. I’m gonna hail the nearest Klingon ship and call them something rude. That’ll liven the day up.
I was very worried about the Hull game. I really shouldn’t have been. They played as if they didn’t care. At times it seemed like the game was an inconvenience to them. I know that Steve Bruce made some changes, but they never looked like they were desperate to win the match.
I think perhaps it was because they didn’t really believe they could win the tie or the FA Cup. I know that sounds silly considering the fact that they were in the final with us last year, but the idea that Hull could make it past us at home and then all the way to final for a second year in a row seemed absurd to me. They’re just not good enough for that, (we might be though). I have no doubt that the players thought the same thing.
I know players always bang on about loving the big games, but that doesn’t mean they think they can win, it means they love a challenge and they’re going to enjoy the occasion.
If that’s not reason enough then how about this one; they’re sitting 2 points off of the relegation zone and they need to focus their energies on that. If you go into anything with the wrong attitude you’re likely to fail. In this case, ‘we’re unlikely to beat Arsenal at home’, ‘we’re not going to win the cup’ and ‘we have bigger fish to fry’ leads to the sort of performance we saw at the weekend. I should have seen it coming and written it all over twitter. I would have looked so clever.
Before I talk about the Stoke game I’d invite anyone who’s reading this to read (or re-read) my blog from 12th December. Specifically the part about the loss to Stoke.
Stoke love playing us because they believe they can win, (unlike Hull). They beat us a month ago with a mixture of good football, (can’t deny that) and brute force. They’ll be riled up for the game and so will their travelling support.
Here’s the thing though, their record against us at home is abysmal. Our fans will scream at the ref if one of them even touches one of our players, (it does make a difference) and we will be up for the fight as well. Giroud will come back into the team and give their pub team captain something to think about.
Apparently Özil will be back but I don’t expect him to start. Theo will be in contention and along with Alexis he’ll pin their full backs inside their own half. That should go some way to nullifying their attacks, and as long as Gibbs remembers that he’s a defender and not a winger we should force them to go through the middle, which makes them less dangerous.
In the middle they will find Coquelin. Now I’m aware that he isn’t Patrick Vieira, but he is better than Flamini and quite a bit stronger. It will be interesting to see whether Wenger opts to put Chambers alongside Coquelin like he did against Southampton. Regardless of who plays next to him, Coquelin is ready made for a game like this.
Having our first choice back four behind him is a big plus too, and Ospina is a better keeper than Szczesny, so in theory we should be relatively solid defensively. Going forward we’re more than capable so I’m feeling confident.
Sky Sports are saying that we’ve had a bid turned down for Krystian Bielik. Until about a week ago, I’d never heard of him. Maybe it’s because he’s a teenager playing in the Polish league. Or maybe it’s because he’s a fucking TEENAGER playing in the POLISH LEAGUE. Either way, it’s a very Wengeresque thing to do. Put in a substandard bid for an unknown teenager playing in an inferior league who will have no impact on the team for at least 2 years that is if we even manage to buy him. If you don’t believe me about Bielik then I’ve got two words for you. Kim Kallstrom.
All the rumours about Schneiderlin and Khedira are exactly that. Rumours. There’s no point in getting excited about them because it would be a miracle for Wenger to have identified the problem and decided to address it. Why would he. Diaby will be fit soon and he’ll be like a new signing. Shoot me now.
Wenger also clearly thinks Arteta has a couple more years left; otherwise he wouldn’t be looking at a 17 year old in the first place. Shoot me again.
In reality we’ll be lucky if we get one defender. I’d be delighted with Winston Reid, but somehow I can see us with some reject from a rubbish European club. Don’t believe me? I’ve got 3 words for you. Kim fucking Kallstrom.