It was a Long, Long day yesterday for Gooners. First, we had to wait all day for our game at 19:45 and then the 90 odd minutes took a Long time to be over.
Shane Long, hardly played this season for the Saints but totally terrorized our two centre backs. I was embarrased as to how easily Per and Kos were dominated by the Southampton forward. It was only the third game he’d played the full 90 minutes this season.
After such a superb win against City last Monday I had very high hopes that the confidence and team spirit would continue on the South Coast, but we were truly toothless…. what a contrast. How did it happen? What went wrong? and what do they now do about it?
There are some blaming the referee decisions and I think rightly so, Wenger stated after the match:
“We lost too many challenges and that explains why we lost the game. But that’s one aspect, so well done to them.
“The second aspect is that on the first three goals we were really unlucky with the decision of the referee. The first goal was offside, the second goal was a foul and the third goal was a goal kick, so if you’re a bit below par and on top of that you have the first three goals against you in the decision-making then it’s even more difficult.”
The main reason is that the Saints dominated mid-field, Wanyama had a superb game, bullying and winning balls…. perhaps he wanted to show Wenger what he can do in the hope that we’ll sign him in January…. on last nights showing I say “Yes please, get him asap”
Blaming the referree and his assistants doesn’t excuse our boys from their responsibilty on the pitch. Could they have been tired from Monday nights exertions against City? Possibly, because Wenger did say the boys were “… a bit below par”. However, if it had just been one or rwo players who were below par we would still have won the game, no, the whole fucking team were below par, they just didn’t play…. I can’t even pick out one player who had a good game, Monreal perhaps, but that’s clutching at straws.
Southampton, to their credit, were up for it and got their tactics in mid-field spot on…. they dominated and pressed high up, and we had no response. Then Martina and Shane Long happened and it was all over, we capitulated and let them get on with it… the banana skin had done it’s job and we couldn’t get up off the floor.
I’m hoping it’s just a glitch in our push towards the title, at the end of the day we didn’t go top but we stay second, one point above City so no real harm done. We can recover from this setback, the title is still there for the taking and it really is ours to lose. However, a couple more performances like yesterday and we’ll get our usual 4th spot. The worrying thing though, is that the Spuds could end up third. Now that would be a nightmare.
So come on boys, recover from this small setback and get back on track. It would be nice if you can do it against Bournemouth tomorrow.