Good morning Positive friends,
The roar was truly ripped in last night’s contest. If Friday night football is like this then I want more of it. I cannot remember opening league game that has had as much action, so much DRAMA, as we endured enjoyed in the course of collecting our three points against the Foxes. Much is often made in the Mainstream media of players somehow not being quite fit or ready for the start of the PL season. Last night I thought the game started at 100 miles and hour and rarely slackened off. A real ‘edge-of-the-seat’ performance the moment Lacazette headed his tidy opener after a minute to the final shrill of Deano’s whistle 94 minutes later.
Why was the action so electric ? Did anyone here really expect quite such a struggle against a Leicester side who last season scuffled away from relegation only in the final weeks of the season ? Not me.
Let me examine what happened.
- After the hour had passed, and when we were 2-3 behind, we tore the arse out of Leicester ( to use the technical coaching term). From the 60th minute on we passed with precision and moved with speed. The visitors finally could not cope and cracked, twice in the final eight minutes. Ignominiously falling behind for the second time in the evening we needed to switch to Wengerball and my goodness when the lever was pulled we had the players to put it into action. I thought until that point Mesut had been peripheral. In the final 20-30 minutes the German moved from the edge of the engagement to the pivot of all that decisive in our play. Aaron’s swift control and accurate finish levelled it, Larry’s strength finished the battle off. That final half hour was very, very good and no team in the PL, perhaps none but two or three in Europe, could have lived with us. It was not just that substitutions were made. The power was turned up, in my opinion. The performance bodes well.
- Leicester were a dangerous opponent. Fair play to them and the sharpness of Vardy and Okazaki stood out every time during that first hour. What possession they had going forward they used well and forced Cech to save and our defenders to scurry. Four chances, three goals. I salute Leicester for their contribution to the evening’s entertainment.
- Much has been made, by me among others, about the strength of our squad this season which is the best for many years, and I stand by the analysis. Nevertheless fate had conspired to forced us to take our first PL steps with not quote the first 11 we would have chosen, and with a back three made up of our new Bosnian tank, Nacho in the middle, and young Rob on the right side. To lose three goals at home is more than misfortune. Their lack of experience of playing together I am afraid caused the first Leicester goal. The second Vardy goal I thought was taken well so I will accept that. The third Leicester goal the defending was execrable ( a much under-used word I am trying to push back into circulation). Vardy had a free header, not an red shirt in five paces of him. Now I do not blame only the three central defenders for that abomination as I saw almost the same against West Brom in February. But if we want challenge for the PLM then ‘it’ needs sorting out.
That will do me nicely this Saturday morning. Enjoy your weekend one and all.