Friday 29 October 2010

Arsene's pre Hammers thoughts

Arsene saw the first goal as the turning point against Newcastle, from that point Newcastle had to come out, it then left us with the space and the opportunity to kill the game which we did in style. Maybe I'm alone in this but I think it is very important that we rediscover our ability to kill teams on the counter attack, we have lost it a bit in recent years, in fact we have frequently become the victims of counter attacking football in recent seasons.

Szczesny was oustanding and Arsene obviously agreed that he put in a very solid shift. It is crucial that we tie down the young goalkeeper to a long term deal, the lad is a monster. RVP is close to full training, as is Ramsey, so returns to competitive action are likely in mid to late November. The squad for Saturday is going to be largely the same one that travelled to Man City.

West Ham will be boosted by the win against Stoke in midweek, and they will up their game for us, of that there is no doubt. It is not a bad time to be playing them though, their league form is poor. Arsene also acknowledged that you cannot be complacent at home, 'you need to fight for our points' sums up the fact that if you drop off the pace briefly then any team in this league can punish you for it.

Arsene's comments on the Ballon D'Or were interesting. He basically said that the nominations come down to the World Cup performances, and it's hard to argue with that. For me it shows what a farce the whole awards process is, the World Cup was low quality stuff really, the fact that it dominates the awards is grossly unfair on the players who have dominated the European scene over almost a year, as opposed to the flash in the pan that is the World Cup.

It was amusing that Arsene was completely unaware that he had been nominated for coach of the year! In typically modest fashion he pointed out that there were others in a far better position that himself to claim this award, not something the media would highlight I'm sure. The fact that Arsene backs retrospective bans for bad tackles and diving is hardly surprising, I just wonder how long the authorities can resist this for?

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