Normal service resumed. Nice and Easy. Training session. It’s against the supposedly weaker teams that we’ve failed this year. And losing in the Cup to this lot helped. It meant that not even Arsenal could going into this game expecting an easy game (which it actually was). And I’d take 3 points in exchange for a loss in the FA Cup any day (though I’d prefer to have the option of winning both).
We now have a manageable scheduled that is focused on one thing – finding a way to not win the league :). Sorry, meant to say, winning the league. Well, we know there’s no shot at that. Some of the team are playing for their future at Arsenal whereas others are just playing.
The contrasting fortunes of Oh-B-One and TW14 are quite stark. Nearly 8 years in difference, it’s not clear who is the more experienced reader of the game – well, actually, it is. And thankfully OB1 started and helped shape our overall performance. We started with some energy and urgency, went into a little lull and then woke up to dominate and put away a very disengaged Watford.
I always feel bad for Campbell when I see OB1 starting ahead of him. I still don’t get how he lost his place. And then to come on after TW14? But it’s hard to argue with when you a performance like that though. It feels like OB1 mirrors Ozil too much; that they might be too similar and occupy each others space. And OB1 causes us to play a much narrower game. But when he’s playing along with DW23, the pace of our side changes. The movement improves and the passing speeds up in the final 1/3rd. Some of our play in the first half (again, on the right) was sharp and incisive. In a way that we weren’t in previous games. And largely due to the added edge that OB1 provides. But also because Alexis found his touch.
The right hand side literally purred in the first half. It’s a though AS17 went back to Chile to rediscover his true self. This was much more like the Alexis of last year. Switching Alexis to the right seems to have helped and create space for OB1. It’s also funny to see DW23 drift out of the center position; there were times when we have very few players in the box. But he’s so much more mobile than a tortoise or Giroud. It’s just a shame he does not have that Aguaro scoring touch (though if he did then I’m sure MU would not have sold him to us).
Again, the defensive balance in-front of our defense was pivotal. Elneny and our Coq seem to have found a good balance and both honour their defensive responsibilities. I wish though they would get closer to the center halfs when we have the ball and are playing out of defense. We never want to see Koz and Big Ears playing the ball out. But both of them (Big Ears and Koz) were untroubled while Ospina had little to do. They had the odd chance but were second best the entire game.
By the time we dominated in the 2nd half, after the third goal, it felt like we’d found our mo-jo after 3 months of suffering. Of course this was because Watford were as damp as a mildew rag. Even then we tried to gift them a goal. But instead our Theo managed to smack the back et of the net. It was noticeable how ineffective he was when he came on as opposed to Campbell – who worked so hard. It was suprising that Theo came on first but I think – as I’ve said previously – that both he and Giroud are gradually working their way out of this team. Neither seem to really fit as this team evolves. They both have roles for them but that role is way way back on the bench. Cambell is a better option that Theo. And Giroud is, well, just a ponce. A classic French primadonna (shutup – I know that’s Italian).
Though I’ve only mentioned him once so far, it was noticeable how Ozil grew into the game and controlled it from deeper than normal. Maybe that was because of OB1. Either way, as the game wore on he excelled. It just sucks he’s not eligible for the assist on that last goal after such a long distance, precise pass to Campbell.
So, an easy, relaxing, stress-free game. Apart that is for those of us watching on TV where we had to endure the most fucking retarded coverage in ages. What is it with these camera men or their directors. Why oh fucking why do we have to see them show each trivial incident replayed ad nausea when the game is continuing and we’re missing the action. Or those obligatory shots of the crowd or the manager that, again, linger for so long that we can’t actual see the action of the game? This “trend” seems to be getting worse. It’s like these directors feel the need to juice up the coverage – add the “human” element or something equally crass. Why can’t they just follow the game? It’s not a recent effect. I’ve been screaming at the TV for the last 5 years about this. But it seems to be deteriorating. Soon we’ll be watching various shots of the crowd to be interspaced with the odd goal. Is it because they think the game is boring and needs livening up? It’s the most popular sport in the world and this is the most popular league. They don’t need to do anything but just show it as is. Don’t mess with it. Leave our game alone.