Friday The 22nd 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…
Gunners Town would like to welcome Anders (@BergkampSpin) to this week’s review…
-~• HERO •~-
A shout out to a person/organization that you feel has done something praiseworthy in the past week.
Anders: Ospina. Saved a great chipped effort by Fletcher, kept us in the game as Sunderland searched for a goal. Koscielny gets an honourable mention for being rock solid at the back; his anticipation of danger always puts him a step ahead.
Andrea: David Ospina received some criticisms following the goals conceded against Swansea and Manchester United; I agree he could have done better to keep Gomis’ header off the line, however Herrera’s first-time shot came from a very close range, it would be harsh to blame the Colombian. Fair or not, I liked the way he replied to those criticisms with three great saves against Sunderland: in a very quiet game, he stayed focused and reacted quickly to preserve the score. Well done, Dave!
Dave: Only 3 bright sparks from the embers of a fire going out – Ospina, Bellerin and Koscielny. I found myself actually in awe of how superior Kos is to anyone else. I would go as far as to say he is the only consistently world class player we have currently
Matt: Slim pickings but I think Theo Walcott this week. We’ve been turd in front of goal over the past week, but we look far more likely to score when he comes on, which must do his confidence the world of good too.
Paul: Ospina. For going from zero to hero in a week, (and beating Ramsey and Giroud’s records in the process). A couple of vital saves that saved some serious blushes against the mighty Sunderland.
Omar: Pantimillon. Is that how you spell it? He kept Sunderland in the Premier League when all hope was lost. Save after save, much to our displeasure!
Alex: Giroud for standing up to Henry’s criticism. The man has a much better mentality than I thought!
HERO of the Week: David Ospina
-~• VILLAIN •~-
A shout-down to a person/organization that you feel has done something shameworthy in the past week.
Anders: Thierry Henry. Great player, terrible pundit this season. He needs to hit the books and stop throwing the team that gave him everything under the bus.
Andrea: Olivier Giroud wins this not-so-coveted prize this week: the guy looks jaded, he can’t convert the few chances he’s provided with and seems to lack confidence; he’s not very lucky neither but he’s not helping his case with misses like the one at Old Trafford. Time to step-up, big Oli!
Dave: Wenger for playing obviously out-of-form and jaded players, and not offering tactics with any width until the last 15 minutes of games. Seriously pissing me of…
Matt: Don’t really have anyone to blame for Arsenal, so the FA for reducing Cesc Fabregas’ ban for what was the moment of the season.
Paul: Me. For urging Ozil to “Shoooooot!” week in, week out. Now I know why he doesn’t. (He’s not very good at it, is he? That said – he’s not much worse than Wilshere. Or Cazorla. Or Giroud. Or Gibbs. Or Sanchez. Or Ramsey.)
Omar: Cesc Fabregas – what on earth he was thinking when kicked that ball into the WBA player’s head, only he knows! Stupid, stupid act.
Alex: Henry with his clichéd, untimely, unnecessary and downright wrong comments. If Thierry keeps up picking on our players he won’t be greeted with open arms at the Conley and he can just forget about the managerial position.
VILLAIN of the Week: Arsenal’s Shooting Prowess
-~• HIGHLIGHT •~-
The most memorable or poignant moment of the past week. Typically an event, rather than a person/organization.
Anders: Giroud putting Henry in his place. He may lack confidence on the pitch, but never off it.
Andrea: Theo Walcott didn’t impress me at all against Swansea but the quick turn and shot he took against Sunderland was sublime; a very welcome hint he still has something to offer, that extra pace so useful to open tight defences. He might not be a regular starter but he could be a lethal weapon from the bench.
Dave: Can’t recall one…
Matt: Louis van Gaal forcing applause for the saxophone player. He may be the United manager, but it is hard to not warm to him at times
Paul: Brunt. For bearing the brunt of Fabregas’ foray into the theatre of the absurd. (That was a pretty amazing shot, to be honest. Bizarre. But brilliant.)
Omar: Close call between Fabregas being sent off for something that silly and Chelsea getting beaten 3-0!
Alex: Wenger basically saying Mourinho can take his opinion and stick it where the sun doesn’t shine. Closely followed by Van Gaal’s drunk speech. Closely followed by Sterling’s agent calling Carragher a knob.
HIGHLIGHT of the Week: Louis Van Gaal
-~• LOWLIGHT •~-
The most forgettable or disappointing moment of the past week. Typically an event, rather than a person/organization.
Anders: Being linked to Raheem Sterling. He’s a good player, but nowhere near a priority. I prefer Chamberlain.
Andrea: The third goalless outing at the Emirates Stadium, hands down. We had plenty of chances yet we could cheer one single goal in the last 270 minutes of football at home; I didn’t really counted them but we had something like 55 efforts against Chelsea, Swansea and Sunderland combined, it ‘s unbelievable we couldn’t convert one.
Dave: Too many to list…
Matt: The Twitter outrage. All of a sudden a whole heap of Arsenal players are not good enough when a few games ago they were world beaters. Easy.
Paul: All the tweeple that jump down my throat when I make any comment that vaguely criticizes Ozil. He’s even more of a sacred cow than Wenger.
Omar: Draw with Sunderland. Chances created, as versus Swansea, unable to convert. Historically, in such games, the Gunners tend to find a goal in the dying minutes, that hasn’t been the case recently. Cause for worry? Hopefully not!
Alex: The disgusting treatment Raheem Sterling receives from the manager, the Club and the former players. He should leave and I’m not saying it because there’s a good chance he can join us in this case. I’m saying it because Raheem shouldn’t tolerate the way he’s being treated
LOWLIGHT of the Week: Angry Twitter
-~• 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…
Anders: Jack Wilshere completing the better part of 70 minutes. Certainly not a sparkling performance, but I think Jack did well considering the circumstances. The real headlight here is what’s to come from him next season. He’ll have to be incredible to get into this team.
Andrea: Let’s not fool ourselves; no-one gives a single duck about the home game against West Brom: our heads, hearts and guts have taken a seat at Wembley already. The second FA Cup final in as many years is the event we’re all looking forward to.
Dave: I am convinced that someone will play on Sunday, shine and force their way into the Cup Final 11. Head says Jack, heart says Mozart.
Matt: Watch out for Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil bringing their dogs on for the lap of appreciation following the end of the West Brom match, rather than kids. [Lap of appreciation – get it? -Ed]
Paul: If we fail to score (or worse – LOSE) against West Brom, then the herd of butterflies I already have in my stomach may very well be the death of me. You see – I just spent $1700 on a plane ticket to go to the FA Cup Final. Losing would just suck such massive eggs, it’s not even worth considering…
Omar: Headlights of the WBA bus! Though some are of the opinion that Pulis will set his team out to play in typical Pulis manner, so let’s see!
Alex: One eye on the FA Cup final as the Gunners play West Brom. Badly need a win in this last game to finish on a high (just not like Livermore), coupled with at least one goal for Ollie Giroud. This way both him and us will go into the final with some confidence…
HEADLIGHT of the Week: Lap”Of Honour Dog Alert
Special thanks to this week’s contributors: