Good morning Positively Arsenal,
A genuinely good contest last night, which is unusual for Monday night. Very much the “game-of-two-halves” for Arsenal.
The first 45 we played in patches and, for my second surprise of the evening, the visitors set about us with a bit of quality. For various reasons that were debated to death last night we may have been slightly lucky to go in with a 1-0 lead at half time. “I’ve seen ’em given Ron, I’ve see ‘em given” et cetera. If it had been Deano rather than Bobby Madeley last night the penalty count might have been 4-2 (to the Arsenal obviously). If I was looking for a decisive moment in the half it was Nacho’s kung fu clearance from Rodriguez’s header. If the Baggies had gone level at that point, and they were playing well, it would have rocked us hard.
The second half there were no patches in the Arsenal display. Cech barely touched the ball and Mustafi and Kosc had a leisurely time at the back. We controlled the ball and pinned the Baggies back. The second goal seemed a long time coming despite our dominance and until it arrived the visitors were still in with a slight chance. From the 67th minute however the points were assured. I was hoping for one more but we slightly eased off the tempo, perhaps with Thursday night in mind.
For us as has been said elsewhere on here Nacho was in his element last night. Decisive in defensive and on two occasions he could have scored, with only a bobbling ball and the grasp of Nyon defeating him. His left side partner Kolasinac also had another good evening, an uncompromising physical first half and a much more fluid attacking second. And finally on the podium this week I place Alexander Lacazette. Two chances, two goals. The first a classic ‘predator’ six yard line finisher goal. If you look at his penalty thought it was even better. Foster dived the correct way and any less power or careful placement of the shot he would have had a hand on it. An important penalty, and they all count.
For West Brom I was impressed with Krychowiak and Rodriguez. Both were at the heart of the expansive first half effort were they attacked us hard and in numbers. It is interesting that the Baggies have the profile to attract a player as good as the Pole on loan, and Rodriguez I have always liked. Nice to see Kieran get in 90 minutes last night too. Good lad. Whether it is the influence of the new Chinese owners or Pulis has seen the light I don’t know. Watching two quality ball players must be a tonic for the Hawthorn’s regulars though who for years have had to put up with some dull stuff. I can see a top eight finish for WBA if that progress continues.
Anyway that is me done this morning. I will be missing on Thursday evening, and on my way to Wroclaw (Ryanair permitting), but back on Sunday so if anyone fancies a little post match delight from Byelorussia speak now !!
Enjoy your Tuesday.