By Tony Attwood
The headline relates to the goal attempts. No wonder most of us who were able to go, enjoyed the game. Arsenal 26 attempts Reading 5. Quite a score. The possession was 70% to us. It was rather nice to be there.
Except of course for the AAA and their eternal “Wenger Out” calls. Their numbers decline week by week, as the momentum sways even more (among those who attend) in favour of Mr Wenger. And we are getting a few fractious scenes in the stadium too, as the pro-Wenger majority stand up and be counted.
Actually talking of standing up Drew tells me that in the lower tier of the North Bank the stewards made a concerted effort to make people sit in the first half – maybe because all the Reading fans were seated (although I can’t be 100% on that because I sit directly opposite the away fans).
The AAA’s main problem was Gervinho, one of the players who they have barracked throughout the season. Yes he has had a highly inconsistent period, but still there are many of us who attend now who believe we should support our team.
But as you’ll know Gervinho scored the sort of goal which because of the speed of the arrival of the ball can go right over the bar off any forward’s foot.
Arsène Wenger said in the press conference after the game, “Our only regret was the number of goals. But I enjoyed the technical and creative side, and overall this is the basis for a good finish to the season.”
There were also complaints that Mr Wenger’s “stupidity” had left us woefully short of midfielders, and the AAA created “midfield crisis” talk before the game, but few were fooled.
We had Rosicky, Cazorla, Francis Coquelin, Arteta and Ramsey available today and the word is that Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere are not very far away.
The really key point that Mr Wenger made was this, “Gervinho lost confidence because he played in a very negative atmosphere for a period. Strikers need confidence, and with his game even more so because he takes the ball forward, always provoking. When he has his confidence back he’s a very dangerous player and for me he was the best striker at the African Nations Cup.”
It is rare for Mr Wenger to refer to the AAA even obliquely but it is clear that he has had enough, and I agree, blame should be put where blame is due. The problems the club has had have been exacerbated by the AAA’s ceaseless moaning.
31 March 1906: Arsenal play in FA Cup semi final for first time
31 March 1973: First appearance for Arsenal of Frank McLintock