A brick wall is a fucking brick wall…. how can you get through it? Perhaps Steve could do it with the Kango he used to demolish Leeds Castle.
Hull City came to the Emirates with one thing in mind, defend and go home with a draw, sometimes a team can perform beyond their normal capabilities against a better side and this is what happened yesterday. I don’t think we could have asked more from our boys, they performed admirably and the eleven shots they had on target would normally have given us a goal tally of at least 2 or 3, but on this occasion they were saved by a keeper on top form.
We had nearly 70% possession and 24 attempts on goal, some of those shots were wayward and on another day would have gone in, it just wasn’t our day. The Tigers were tigerish in their defending and for most of the game had nine or ten players packing their defence, not a lot you can do about that tactic in my opinion.
There were also two clear penalty appeals turned down by Dean, that was expected when it was announced he would be the referee for the game. At the end of the day we had a brick wall to try and get through and a ref who wasn’t going to do us any favours.
The only way I can look at it is to give credit to Hull for the way they fought tooth and nail for the result but don’t blame the Arsenal for failing to win the game, it wouldn’t be fair on our boys. There were a couple of outstanding performances from Gibbo, and Elneny in particular, the Egyptian fits into our midfield similar to Cazorla, he controlled and distributed, tackled and won the ball back and overall, had a very good game.
Welbeck and Theo both had good games and on another day would have been on the score sheet. The only question mark I had was Sanchez when he came on, he seems to have lost some of his sparkle since his injury, he was wasteful and failed to make an impact. Perhaps we’ve become used to his normal game and therefore, there is a larger contrast when he has a bad day. I hope he finds his usual zest soon.
Anyway, that game has to be put behind us, we didn’t lose and we have a chance to put it right in the replay. The team now have to focus on Tuesdays game against Barca, which will be much more open and allow us to play our normal attacking style.
The replay will add to our already busy schedule but I’ve looked at the fixtures and I think the game which will be moved is Swansea at home, so it won’t be a major upheaval.
Therefore, I say to all those who may be disappointed about yesterday, don’t blame the boys in red, but instead, praise Hull City for sticking rigidly to a tactic and gaining a commendable result.
Bring on Barcelona…..