It’s been a long week at Arsenal. When Vardy banged in that penalty in the first half, we all thought our title challenge will come crashing down like in previous seasons. Albeit this time to an unfamiliar foe. But Arsène had other plans. A man often criticised for waiting up too long to add substitutions first sent in Walcott and then Welbeck both of whom scored to tip the title race right unto us. The emotions an Arsenal fan went through after that goal from ‘That Guy’ cannot be put through in plain words. On the internet, there is a picture of a guy getting hernia due to celebrations after the goal doing the rounds. However, Sp*rs winning at the Etihad (I cannot even fathom how they got that penalty) put them above us again and that can only make us look forward to the crunch clash at the Lane in 2 weeks time.
Fast forward a week and we see Arsenal take on Hull City (our loyal FA Cup partner) at home while most people are already keeping an eye on the European night ahead vs some team from Catalonia (more on that later).
What is important for the squad now is not to be pragmatic and approach this game with all the seriousness it deserves. Yes, we won’t be having a full strength team but there is no reason not to send out a strong squad for this. The re-introduction of many a player looks to inject a breath of fresh air into the team. I particularly thought Chambers did a great job at Centre Back after being called back to action.
Koscielny (and Cech among others) looks set to be given a rest while Gabriel will miss the clash due to injury. Elneny and Welbeck are almost certain to start as stated by Wenger yesterday in the press. It will be a his 100th game in charge of the Arsenal in the FA Cup and maybe he can do one better and win it for an undisputed 7th time in history.
Talking a bit about the return of European nights to the Emirates, it’s just a little more than 5 years since Arshavin (God we miss him, don’t we?) scored the winner vs Barcelona here and the memory just runs through our minds as if it was tomorrow. Every bit of emotion that night is still etched on our memory. How the away leg ended is a different story altogether but we move ahead one step at a time. In a space of 4 days we are again set for a roller-coster ride and certain to experience another Century of Emotions. Make it a memorable one Arsenal. #COYG