Some perspective from @arsenalandrew
The notorious over-emotional toxicity of Arsenal’s online support is in stark contrast to most of the support in the stadium. Whereas online, Arsenal could do no right, in the stadium, a largely ‘flat’ crowd grew increasingly despondent at the sight of a rookie referee entirely out of his depth, a willing accomplice to the hateful Bruce’s brilliantly simplistic resort to time-wasting every single time Arsenal started to get momentum.
Truth is, Arsenal rarely look the best after an international break disrupts our natural but precise squad rhythm and the absence of so many first-teamers yesterday took its toll on our usual fluidity. From reaction online you’d be forgiven for assuming we’ve lost all our opening games but the reality is despite needing to bed in new players and accomodate the debilitation of an unenviable injury record, we are, as a side, hard to beat. The margins between these costly draws and the victories we seek are fine, and whilst we can’t simply point the finger of disappointment at the entire refereeing stable, at this level, and with such marginal differences, the impact of key refereeing decisions can not be lightly dismissed.
Online, it’s seemingly all about Arsene. The reality, however, is more complex.
And whilst I have no doubt this squad will come good I’m more concerned that the online poison will seep through to our matchday crowd making life easier for our opponents and ever-tougher for Arsenal. The gleeful joy of those attacking the club are as odious as the time-wasting of the fat one right out of the Ferguson stable, and as infuriating as the incompetent referees that allow him to get away with it.
Arsenal – and Arsenal fans – need to rise above this as surely as the PGMOL need to get a grip on their officials.
From pedantic george @Blackburngeorge
The danger is that we try to shift all the blame onto the referees, or that we are seen to be trying to do so. The reasons we find Chelsea with twice as many points as us are complex and there is a few of them. To absolve Arsene from all blame, without at least considering he is in some part complicit, is as ridiculous and narrow minded as laying all of the blame at his feet.
Well I have considered his part, and I think he has to shoulder some of the blame (if we have to apportion blame) I believe not only will he accept some blame, but he will put things right. In the last 10 years he has had a lot poorer players than these, playing a lot better than these currently are. I see no reason to think he won’t get this squad firing on all cylinders when circumstance permit.