Friday The 15th May, 2015
Welcome to Thank Bergkamp It’s Friday – where members of the Gunners Town writing team gather to take a look at the Arsenal week that’s just passed. It’s a simple format, really – each week, a smattering of our eclectic scribes will select a HERO, a VILLAIN, a HIGHLIGHT, and a LOWLIGHT from the previous seven days.
Lastly they will share what is in their ‘HEADLIGHTs‘, which could be a player to watch, a worry for a forthcoming match, a potential banana-skin to look out for….
We’d love to know what you think: do you agree/disagree? Did we miss something? If you would like to participate, please add your selections in the Comments below…
-~• HERO •~-
A shout out to a person/organization that you feel has done something praiseworthy in the past week.
Daniel: Santi Cazorla. He has been immense this season. What Arsene Wenger did was another masterstroke there. Playing Santi in central midfield gives him the ability to dictate play and join in on attacks. Every player at the club talks about Santi and about how amazing it is to play alongside him. A lesson to all future footballers, no matter how tall or short you are, hard work always pays off.
Wellmington: Bafetimbi Gomis – for giving us a reality check, I believe we needed
Andrea: Well, in a week that saw us dropping three points at home against Swansea it’s hard to find a hero. It’s been quite a depressing week but I have to name one and I pick Mesut Özil. His technical qualities are well know, however seeing him fighting to win the ball back and take the leading role in midfield in the final minutes of the game was very reassuring. He can be a leader and a fighter, he’s starting to realize that…
Matt Cotton: Jack Wilshere. For not picking up an injury despite playing a good 25 minutes of football on Monday night.
Alex: Alvaro Morata for scoring a goal which eventually knocked his club out of the Champions League. Banter of the highest order when a club with a 200 mil front three crashes out to a goal of their academy gradute. Also, kudos to Pep Guardiola for going for the win until the last second
Awolowo: Arsene. For keeping faith with the same XI for the 1st time in his Arsenal career. Has to count for something.
Omar: David de Gea. Hate to highlight a United player as a hero but let’s face it, he once again kept the opposition at bay with a string of how-did-that-not-go-in saves and spared his team’s blushes. For some reason, Manchester United are still in the race for Top 3!
HERO of the Week: Santi Cazorla
-~• VILLAIN •~-
A shout-down to a person/organization that you feel has done something shameworthy in the past week.
Daniel: Our Goalkeeping staff. We’ve been having slight errors, injury problems and a host of other problems with our goalkeepers since Jens Lehmann left the club. I like both David Ospina and Wojciech but our goalkeeping staff need to solve these issues. That Swansea goal wouldn’t have counted had Ospina been a little bit more aware of the situation.
Wellmington: Bafetimbi Gomis – for making us look at reality
Andrea: I don’t like naming names but Theo Walcott has been quite disappointing against Swansea. I’m not worried by the chances he didn’t convert, what really bothered me was his apparent lack of involvement; in such a tight game he didn’t show the desire and hunger that his teammates were transmitting. It sounds like he doesn’t really want to grab a starting spot in the team – or maybe he already decided to leave.
Matt Cotton: David Ospina. If he wasn’t so short, he would have saved Bafetimbi Gomis’ header. Petr Cech would have kept that out…
Alex: A whole lot of Arsenal fans who started chastising each and every player (and also Arsene Wenger) for our loss. They started looking for reasons and scapegoats, when they should have just accepted that not everything is in our power and that freak accidents do happen sometimes
Awolowo: Santi Cazorla. Not allowed to score from open play, which finally cost us on Monday.
Omar: Cristiano Ronaldo. Criticism has been leveled at Bale for his spurned opportunities but considering you have, apparently, one of the world’s best players in your side, you’d expect him to turn up in the semi-final of the Champions League! Ronaldo’s shortcomings were plain in sight Wednesday night and for a star man, it was not a star showing when it was most required.
VILLAIN of the Week: Cristiano Ronaldo
-~• HIGHLIGHT •~-
The most memorable or poignant moment of the past week. Typically an event, rather than a person/organization.
Daniel: Gary Neville talking about how important it is that Arsenal finish second and retain the FA Cup. Finishing second gives the whole team belief that they will compete for the league next season and Neville was right, going from fourth to second and grabbing a second FA Cup in two years is progression. Arsenal’s time is coming…
Wellmington: Watching The Arsenal @ 7am in a bar in Fiji (work trip)
Andrea: Well, again – it’s hard to find a highlight for this week. We were missing that final, scintillating piece of skill that would have won us the game and none has been able to produce it. My highlight of the week has happened elsewhere and is Robert Lewandowski’s goal against Barcelona: a combination of flair, technique and merciless finishing. Go and get him, Arsène!!!
Matt Cotton: I guess it’s nice to know that the goal technology works. It’s just a shame it had to happen against us.
Alex: Ronaldo’s tears after Real got knocked out. Hate his arrogant guts and his ability to make tap-ins and penalties look like the greatest goals the world has ever seen just because HE scored them
Awolowo: The confidence brewing within the team and fans alike before the Swansea upset was refreshing.
Omar: Juventus. It has to be doesn’t it? Historically one of Europe’s giants, after many years not only progressed through the knock out stages but actually made the final. No one would have predicted it. It’s a glimmer of hope for the Serie A and from a history/tradition perspective, it’s certainly nice to see them back!
HIGHLIGHT of the Week: Highlight with Most Votes
-~• LOWLIGHT •~-
The most forgettable or disappointing moment of the past week. Typically an event, rather than a person/organization.
Daniel: Our defeat to Swansea City. So disappointed. We dictated the whole game, practically had 85% possession and couldn’t score a goal. With players like Cazorla, Ozil, Sanchez, Ramsey, Wilshere and Giroud we should have scored at least one goal in the second half. Not good enough if we wanted to win the league next year.
Wellmington: Watching The Arsenal lose @ 7am in a bar in Fiji
Andrea: Gifting the second place so easily was my lowlight of the week. We had a very good chance to finish there and it was all in our hands, now we’re virtually sure to finish below Manchester City. Winning the remaining three games would put us on par with Pellegrini’s men but the goal difference is hugely against us – we should have done much better.
Matt Cotton: Realising at 8.30pm on Monday that you knew exactly how your night was going to end up, and then still watching despite 10 goals going in on the other channel.
Alex: Arsenal’s unbeaten run coming to an end. Quite unexpectedly, highly untimely and very painfully. Now the second place is no longer in our hands. Hope we at least bounce back against United on Sunday and then we’ll wait for slip-ups from City
Awolowo: The upset even critics didn’t see coming.
Omar: Arsenal of course. Sure, as fans, we went into the game with a bit of caution because it’s Swansea but could we be blamed for being confident for a win? People say same old-same old but the positive was that we did create enough chances, but they were all hit at the keeper! Same-old was the manner in which we conceded the goal, and that was the LowLight for me. We just might have to settle for 4th again!
LOWLIGHT of the Week: Swansea Loss
-~• HEADLIGHT •~-
A prediction or warning for the week ahead. Perhaps a banana skin that we need to look out for; the return of a player; something you are looking forward to…
Daniel: The game vs. Manchester United at Old Trafford is a huge one, win that and we guarantee a top three finish. Lose it and it could turn into a nightmare for Arsenal. I still believe we can clinch second place. It will be really sad if Arsenal don’t get anything out of Manchester. Anything but that Champions League qualifier!
Wellmington: Beating Manure & securing second
Andrea: Old Trafford on Sunday. We have a golden opportunity to prove our home defeat against Swansea was a slip, securing the third place in the meanwhile. We won there in the FA Cup so we have the mental ability to go there and grab the three points, it’s up to the lads to prove something. If we don’t get a good result, get ready for a tornado of “it’s the same old Arsenal!” stories.
Matt Cotton: A draw would not be the end of the world at Old Trafford. A defeat would be horrid.
Alex: But of course the visit to Old Trafford. Should get as many walking wounded back as we humanly can, cut out that crap with Ramsey on the wing and just do what we did in March. This time we’ll have the privilige of Ospina in goal
Awolowo: A chance to bounce right back at OT. Probably the perfect game.
Omar: Old Trafford. Though we beat them last time out, luck seems to be on their side. Nevertheless, it’s the one to look forward to and THE game that matters more than anything else. It’s going to be a close encounter and I hope we score the first goal. LvG is unlikely to park the bus, he didn’t do it last time, so that should give us a good opportunity!
HEADLIGHT of the Week: Old Trafford
Special thanks to this week’s contributors: