What an insane game of football. An incredible tempo and pace that saw both sides throwing the kitchen sink, washing machine and dish washer at each other for the whole ninety. There was controversy, there was frustration, but I don't think anyone can really complain about the heart shown by the players today, they fought and gave their all, and in my opinion they were more than a tad unlucky not to come away with all three points.
Walcott scored before some had taken their seats, a slick finish having been slipped through neatly by Cesc. Tottenham then struck back through Van der Vaart, Diaby let him run free and his touch and finish were pretty damn clinical. Nasri then struck a cracker, Gomes didn't even see his stunning twenty five yarder. RVP then gave us a cushion, his initial header from Walcott's delightful chipped cross was acrobatically saved by Gomes, the rebound was dispatched with interest.
The pivotal moment for me was Tottenham's rather fortunate second goal just before half time. The ball broke outside the box and Huddlestone hit it first time, it could have gone to row Z or the corner flag, it flew towards the bottom corner, possibly taking a small deflection on the way through. There was technique I know, but Huddlestone could hit another ten of those and not score a single one. The loss of the two goal cushion before half time was pivotal.
Having said that we could and probably should have made the game safe after that, with the score at 3-2 we looked dangerous on the break and there was plenty of space to exploit. Theo came close and was always a threat, but we never quite had the conviction to bury the game. So when Lennon was played through in the inside left position and Szczesny charged out, I feared the worst, Lennon was barely touched and went down like a sack of spuds, Atkinson duly awarded another soft penalty against us. Van der Vaart made no mistake.
The game could have gone either way after this, both keepers made some fantastic saves, RVP had a goal wrongly disallowed for offside, it was particularly annoying that Van der Vaart was offside several times but the linesman let him get away with it. I have to mention Martin Atkinson, he is just not a very good referee, it was the little decisions that he got wrong time and time and time again. Tottenham players were consistently not playing the ball and obstructing Arsenal players, Atkinson just couldn't see this all night long. At least Atkinson didn't get sucked in by the pathetic Modric's blatant diving. Arsene's substitutions were poor, Bendtner and Arshavin did little, I would have left Theo on.
The league was not lost tonight. Tonight we saw an excellent performance from a side that worked terrifically hard and played for each other. There were also some much better individual performances. One has to give a lot of credit to Tottenham as well, they never gave up, although their approach was rather direct, they showed a lot of character to come back from two goals down. It was a great game of football all round and we should concentrate on this. There's no doubt if we had played this well against the likes of Sunderland, Liverpool and Blackburn, we would have quite a few more points than we do now.