Happy Monday Gooners,
and if today is half as good as Sunday then we are in for a treat. What an
awesome day yesterday was. Not only did we start with Robin van Persie’s
Manchester United losing, but then we went ahead and choked the chickens before
putting them back in their shadowed pen.
And then to add to all the excitement, reports break that we
have bid £42.5m for Real Madrid midfielder Mesut Ozil; what an earth is happening?
Speculation also claims that we’ve all but signed Emiliano Viviano and are
still in for Angel di Maria as well as Abel Hernandez.
However, I’ve had enough of all this transfer nonsense and
literally cannot wait for the window to, as they say, SLAM SHUT! It’s been the
bane of my life over the past few months, full of ups and downs, so I’d rather
focus on beating our arch rivals who have spent £110m this summer. Is that ok?
I don’t care if it is with you because it’s my blog.
Back to the North London derby though and there were so many
positives to take from the match. Firstly, the crowd was absolutely superb and
made the Emirates an absolute fortress. The fans always raise their game for
the Spurs matches, but imagine if we could reproduce that sort of atmosphere for
every home game.
As well as the fans, the team also put in a top display and
earned a hard-fought 1-0 win against a side that believed that they would
embarrass us after spending £110m. Well who is laughing now? Of course there is
still a long way to go and Spurs could challenge for a spot in the top four in
the long run, but for now, here are my five positive points to take away from
our win over our neighbours.
Top 5: Positive points from the North London derby
5. Return of the
It may have come at the expense of Jack Wilshere coming off early due to
a stomach bug, but Sunday witnessed the return of Mathieu Flamini to Arsenal
action following his free transfer during the week. Many had been sceptical
about the Frenchman, one reason was due to the way he left the club in the
first place, and another was because he hadn’t played a competitive fixture
since May before being released by AC Milan.
However, Flamini’s display was one of the standout points to take away
from the match for me. He epitomised commitment, passion and leadership with a
warrior-like performance. He was given a warm reception onto the field and
straight away hurled himself into a challenge like he really wanted to mash the
Flamini put in a good defensive showing and was frequently firing up his
teammates, pointing, applauding and keeping the tempo high, and proved that he
is maybe worth a place in the team after all. Not bad for a free transfer
that’s for sure.
Welcome back Flaminal!
4. Giroud’s Hot
What can I say about Olivier Giroud that hasn’t already been said? I’m serious;
help me out because I have no idea. In which case, I’ll just repeat the glowing
tributes that this handsome fellow has been receiving.
To put it simply, he was immense. His goal was sublime. His movement to
drag Michael Dawson away before making a darting run that left the defender on
his ass before applying the most delicate of touches to prod the ball past the
impressive Hugo Lloris was first class.
Away from his goal, Giroud’s build-up play was remarkable. He frequently
battled hard to create chances for others and to bring them into the match and
you could see just how much the win meant to him at full time.
That’s three goals in three Premier League games for Giroud, and if you
include preseason matches, then he is 12 in 12 at the moment. Phenomenal
afternoon from the new fan favourite.
3. A Case for
Despite having the second best defence in the Premier League last
season, our back five has really taking a bashing from the media in recent
years. At times, it is very justifiable and none of us would disagree with
that. However, yesterday it was superb from the first minute until the end of
Having put in many special performances together last term, Per
Mertesacker was a leader and Laurent Koscielny an absolute beast at the heart
of the backline, with the hard-working Kieran Gibbs and Carl Jenkinson bombing
up and down for the entire 90 minutes.
However, the aspect of the defence I am most pleased by is the return to
form of Wojciech Szczesny. We all know how big a Gooner he is and what
potential he has. We know that he is a very good goalkeeper but that he didn’t
have a very good campaign last term.
However, that’s three clean sheets in his last four outings for the
Gunners, and he has made some wonderful saves along the way. He does need
competition and, if the rumours are true about Viviano, then he will get that.
Throw Lukasz Fabianski into the mix, and Szczesny will have some task at hand
when it comes to holding on to his number one spot. However, it is one that Sir
Chesney will relish.
London is Red
Is it just me, or did Arsene Wenger miss the memo about Spurs becoming
the cream of the crop in North London having spunked £110m on seven
international players? The amount of Spuds fans giving it the biggun before the
clash was unreal. Once again this was their time, they would be challenging for
the title this year while Arsenal would be struggling to secure a top-four
Well, Wenger clearly doesn’t care for Spurs running their mouths. It’s
always brilliant to have the bragging rights, and it was evident at the Emirates
yesterday just how much it meant to the manager, players and fans. Everyone
loves putting Spurs in their place.
And now without Gareth Bale, maybe Tottenham will think twice about
questioning our superiority of North London. On the flip side, the confidence
gained by the Gunners after a big win like that will do wonders.
1. Wenger’s Transfer
We all saw that massive smile on the face of Wenger as he was
interviewed by Sky Sports after the game yesterday, and the boss was in top
Firstly, he apologised that Flamini did not cost £25m after the reporter
praised his performance, before going on to say that he may have a surprise in
store for Gooners come deadline day.
Oh Arsene you tease.
At the time of writing, Ozil has agreed personal terms and is having a
medical in Germany after Arsenal and Real Madrid settled on a fee. Whether this
comes off or not remains to be seen, but today could be a crazy day for Arsenal
Please leave a comment or give me some feedback on
Twitter and let me know your views, I love to hear them.
And remember, never forget you’re a Gooner!
Matt has been the editor of the site since June 2012 and was born into a Gooner family 21 years ago. He recently graduated from Southampton Solent University with a degree in Sports Journalism and strives to work in the Sports Media industry. As well as currently working as a reporter for Sports Mole and TIBS News, Matt has been providing football commentary for the visually impaired since 2008 at Arsenal, Exeter City and Wembley.
His earliest Gunners memory is watching the ‘Boring, boring Arsenal’ VHS as a six-year-old on repeat, to the extent where he could recite most of the commentary from that season. Matt was lucky enough to witness Arsenal lift the Premier League in 2002 as well as being present during the last match at Highbury in 2006, and at Dennis Bergkamp’s testimonial a few months later at the Emirates Stadium. Matt’s favourite players include Bergkamp, Thierry Henry and Tony Adams, with the 5-3 comeback victory against Middlesbrough in 2004 the best match he has ever spectated.
Matt is an optimistic ’In Wenger we trust’, kind of guy and believes that the glory days are not too far away…
Apart from his editorial duties, Matt will also be bringing his Arsenal knowledge to a column called “Where Are They Now?” – which focuses on former Gunners.