Arsenal walked away from Villa Park with a point or rather 2 points dropped, however you want to look at it. We were slow to get things going in the first few minutes, but managed to to settle down as the match progressed.
To be honest we never really posed Villa any threat until Fabregas hit the post, and the resulting rebound found it’s way into Rosicky’s path, but Aaron Ramsey’s lack of communication meant the chance went begging. The second half saw both teams try to go for it, which made it a more open game with each team creating half chances.
Clichy had a torrid time defending Ashley Young, as the latter gave him fits all night running at him. Vermaelen hobbled off injured, and will have an x-ray today to determine the extent of his injury. I hope and pray it’s just a nerve and nothing serious as we lack ideal cover in that position. Sol Campbell performed admirably, but you can’t expect a 35 yr old who has barely played consecutive games to play back to back crucial games. Alex Song could play as a CB but that leaves us a bit short in DM, since Denilson has shown no interest in making the position his own. Whatever Wenger decides to do should be very interesting, might he even dip into the market to find cover?
On his thoughts following the Villa game, Wenger said…
“I believe we dropped two points because we had clear chances but on the other hand it was a difficult game. They stopped us from playing when we had the ball and they played a long-ball game and closed us down, so it was difficult. We didn’t always find our passing game. We know when we come here what we get and we were not disappointed. [The result] keeps our unbeaten run going. If you put all the games together I believe it maintains the positive vibes. Overall, you have to win any game at the moment. Compared to Chelsea who won today, we dropped two points.”
Martin O’Neil however didn’t see it that way even though the same article mentions the manager’s respect for Villa and his hope of them going on a run. But i suppose when your team can’t score in 4 straight games you will do anything to get the pressure of them. The next step would be to prepare for Manchester United, and judging from the current form of Wayne Rooney, I’d say we could be in for a battle. The lads clearly want to prove something knowing full well we outplayed them at Old Trafford and we were quite unlucky not to come away with the win. A win Sunday will do the whole team a lot of good with an away trip to Chelsea a couple days later. Win and we go 2 points clear of United.
Get well soon Vermaelen, maybe this finally forces Wenger to get the checkbook out of storage.