Good morning Positives,
Another road-trip, another defeat. And the 3-1 loss following a spanking victory at the Emirates a few days previously. The story of the first five months of 2018, play, pause, rewind, play.
Of last night’s game it was likely to be a ‘tricky’ fixture with Leicester’s players and beleaguered manager seeking salvation after their humbling at home by Moyes’ mighty Ammers at the weekend. Another limp display and Puel was gone (and may still be gone). Add to that spark in the home side our injury roster of Kosc, Ozil, Santi and Mrs Wilshere gulping down gas and air, and or other lads earning a deserved rest, and it was a proper football contest in prospect.
Early on I thought we had the game under control but slackness in GETTING RID OF THE F******** BALL WHILE IT BOUNCED AROUND THE BOX + lax marking allowed Iheanacho in for the home side’s opener. Dinos then messed up and was dispossessed by the same player a minute later and off he went. Looking at the red card incident again on TV it was arguable that Holding could/should/would have got across if Dinos had let the striker go but that was not the way referee Scott saw it.
For a few minutes we wobbled alarmingly at 11 v 10 and the Foxes probably should have got a second. We did however steady up and gradually got back into the match by half time. The second half we came out and took control gain and duly equalised after some skilful and determined wing back work from AMN.
Our 10 pressed forward with Mhki, who was excellent all night, Ramsey and Xhaka all pressing high up the pitch, all prominent. Kolasinac in his turn gave a further display of what an attacking full back should do. Quite a left foot on him that boy.
And then, just as I was unpacking the bunting for the victory parade as AFC roll back to N5 with the three points, further self inflicted calamity. Another slack clearance, Mhki made a challenge he did not need to make, from an angle he should never have made any challenge from and Scott pointed spot-ward. At the time it looked like a horrible swing from Mhki, and actually it still does present as a real haymaker, but how much contact was there on Demari Gray ? I have watched it half a dozen times but even from several angles it is difficult to pick out on 2D what can only really be assessed in 3D. I shall leave you, gentle reader, to ponder the evidence;
I recall something very similar with Hector and Musa about two seasons back, and on that occasion I breathed a sigh of relief. Vardey blasts an unstoppable strike into the top corner and even with 15 minutes to go I sensed our players had runout of steam. We pressed forward again but not quite with the same conviction or purpose.Eddie can on with five minutes to go but he did not have a sniff of a goal. Mahrez caught us out again and Leicester comfortable by the final whistle.
Twas ever thus.
So enough of is gloom – a festival in prospect on Sunday for Arsene’s last game. Le’ts enjoy it and intend to have a bit of a party to see him off. I do not know if any of you contributed to the banner flypast I put a link on here for a couple of weeks back but the fan running it @Orpheus79 got enough cash together in £5s and £10s largely for the plane to fly over Huddersfield on Sunday so keep your eye out.
One more game to go – Roll on Sunday, roll on next season.