Is Bendtner just a super sub or is he finally showing what he is really made of?
Written by Chris on January 18, 2009 17:15
I wanted yesterday’s win badly to avenge last September’s defeat at the Emirates, so much that some of my posts showed Arsenal playing at home rather than away. But oh well, maybe that was just a lack of concentration or plain stupidity(grin).
Joking apart, I was gutted before the match started as I honestly thought that Aston Villa, Manchester United and/or Chelsea would have dropped points. As it turned out, none of them did and it’s harsh that whenever we don’t deserve anything we don’t get it but other teams do, which in a way is part of the reason why we’re so back in the title race.
Some of you guys thought that the 10/10 I gave him for yesterday’s performance was a bit too much, but in great honesty, can you mention one thing he didn’t get right? I can’t, those 20 minutes were just pure perfection and have to be fairly rewarded especially when I think that only weeks ago, he was being booed by our own supporters. Wenger went back to the basics with him, dropping him on the bench and using him sporadically and I’m not sure if the boss believes he can really become a regular on that right wing where Eboue is not convincing at all, but if he can keep the Bolton and Hull City performances up, then he may really be a contender.
Similarly to how you judged Nicklas “10″ as a bit too much, many of you raised an eyebrow or two for Robin’s 6.5. Now although I never expected such an aggressive reaction for a badly-given rating after an important away win, yes, thinking twice, it was “harsh” of course and maybe I was too excited with Bendtner’s performance when I put down the ratings. But one thing we surely agree on, injury-free Robin has finally hit top form and is delivering the way we want him to. We have to accept that Cesc will not be back for months and although I believe that Nasri can be as equally good as a provider, the same can be said of Robin, who with his assists is turning more and more into a Bergkamp.
It seems no Arsenal match can be archived without spending a word or two on the midfield. From the start, I thought Wenger made a mistake in keeping Song on the bench and starting with Denilson and Diaby as both of them clearly struggle when retrieving and defending has to be done.
I firmly believe that the midfield problem is being overlooked and may come back to haunt us. Wenger had time to shuffle his cards, with Ramsey, with Nasri in the center, with anyone who calls himself a midfielder, but he stuck with Denilson week after week and we should consider ourselves lucky that we’re winning despite the anonymous performances by him, Diaby and also Eboue.
Now you all know the midfield I would love to see: Nasri-Ramsey in the center, Vela on the left and a new signing on the right. But as I don’t believe Arsene will completely revamp the midfield during this part of the season, let’s just hope he drops Denilson for Song, keeping Eboue on the right and Nasri on the left and giving green light to Diaby to orchestrate the midfield. Maybe Abou will deliver if he plays alongside a true, holding midfielder.
The consecutive wins we enjoyed lately are not the only positive sign of this Arsenal side. Also to underline is the fact that the likes of Nasri, Sagna and Van Persie are now delivering in every single match. These three, but also other players, have struggled during the first part of the season but if they can keep this form up and others join them in being consistent week after week, then we will have plenty to smile about. I still believe there are areas where not all problems have been solved, but we’re getting there. If I look at our opponents in the title race, it’s not that I’ve been THAT impressed by them. Liverpool and Villa have had their share of luck, Chelsea are winning ugly(no flash news there) with United maybe the only side which really is as strong as the table reads. So although it’s very tough, I still want to believe for the title.
Cardiff City away from home in the F.A. Cup is next. Needless to say, they will give 101% to delight the home fans and with Everton only three days after that, I believe some rotation has to be done by Mr. Wenger.
As for the Premiership, at the start of the month I said that we had to win all our January matches to stay in touch with the rest, and half the job is done. With Walcott, Fabregas, Gallas, Silvestre, Eduardo and maybe Rosicky all coming back sometime during the end of the season, I agree with Wenger and believe they will be as important as any new signing can be. But in the meantime, of course, we have to hang in there and keep on collecting important points hoping that next time, those above us in the table will be less lucky than they’ve been yesterday.
As always, don’t hope, but believe.