By Walter Broeckx
Today the new fixture list was made public. And believe it or not… we will have to play each team twice. Once away and once at home. Have you ever seen anything like this before?
Of course you did as this is how it always goes. Well not for each team all the time of course. Because there might be teams that don’t play at home each match. In fact in Belgium we had such a team in play off 1 that had to change grounds in the play offs because a part of their stadium was demolished in order to get the new stands ready for the new season.
And in the near future we might see the same happening to the tiny totts and to Chelsea when they are rebuilding their stadiums. So in a way yes it is normal to play each team home and away but it is not written in stone as one might expect.
The opening fixture is a big one. Liverpool!???? at home. The day that the fans and pundits of Liverpool!??? will once again be saying that this will be their year before the match starts and then when the last day of the season comes they will be probably where they have been most of the time in the last 10 years.
Somewhere between 4th and 8th.
Of course this will not be decided on the opening day of the season but will be based on what might happen. But as Liverpool?!!!! was already being talked about in nothing but superlatives since the arrival of Klopp we will see more of the same. In fact I have lost count of how many people came on Untold and said that Liverpool?!!!! would be the team to beat because of Klopp. Curious to see what really happens with them. But it is a great match to start the league with as it is a classic big match. Oh and I wouldn’t be surprised to see Taylor as the ref for this match.
Our next match wouldn’t have caused much attention if Leicester had not won the league last season. So yes after the pundits favourite team (Liverpool!???) to win the league each season before the ball is kicked we will visit last years champions. And favourite by those same Liverpool!??? pundits just 12 months ago to go down. With that useless Ranieri being their manager.
So first Liverpool and then Leicester…. one could say that is not the easiest start for Arsenal. Our third match takes us to Watford to make it 2 away games in the first 3 matches. And then… we get the first ruin-our-players match again with the qualifiers for the world cup in Russia. Time for me to go on a holiday in the south of France. Hope the hooligans are out by then.
In September we only have 3 PL matches thanks to Fifa and of course we will start our CL campaign. The biggest match on paper is facing Chelsea on the 24th at home. Let’s hope we can stay on the pitch with all 11 players for once. Other matches are against Southampton at home and Hull away.
And so the season will carry on like the water runs to the sea with no real top matches in October. But November starts rather interesting with a match against the tiny neighbours in the Emirates. And then a little international break again and then we will face Manchester United and Mourinho at their ground. Only 3 PL matches in November but some big and important ones. But then again… they also have only 3 points at stake.
December will be a very busy month as usual. We start by “paying” a visit to the tax payers stadium and their tenants. And halfway through December we will go to Manchester City to another state funded stadium. As if they did it on purpose. In the busy Christmas period we will play WBA on boxing day and Crystal Palace at the last day of the year both at home. And to open the year we will go to Southampton…. oh no wait a minute… not this year…. they found another town at the coast to send us to so we play Bournemouth away. No Southampton away this time and that for the first time in …. well it looked to be one of those fixed fixtures in the last seasons.
No other spectacular matches in January against big teams with all respect to Swansea (our bête noir at home lately), Burnley and Watford.
At the start of February we go to Stamford Bridge to visit Chelsea. Other matches are Hull at home and Southampton away at the final weekend of February. That is if our young kids didn’t bring us to Wembley to play the final of the Capital One Cup on that day.
In March we march on to Anfield Road to meet Liverpool. And we get the then still reigning champions at our ground when Leicester visit us on March 11th. The usual difficult trip to WBA comes then before we have another Fifa-corrupt break in the season.
The month of April looks a big month. We start with two home matches within 4 days against Manchester City and then against West Ham. Crystal Palace, Middlesbrough and Sunderland then are an intermezzo before we enter the real crunch time of the season in the last weekend of April.
Yes the calendar maker has chosen April 29th as the day we should go to the lane. I rather like us playing there near the end of the season. It has given us great memories. So just imagine for half a minute we would win the league there (or wherever they play at that moment) again.
Because if that would be the case we only would have 3 PL matches to go. Just imagine us winning the league at WHL (or…) and then the next match and first match of May in the PL would be our home fixture against Manchester United.
Can you imagine Man United and Jose Mourinho having to make a guard of honour for Arsenal and Wenger… I had better stop it now as I feel something warm and wet in my pants (not really of course but well… wouldn’t that be sweet? ) Hell yeah that would be the sweetest PL title ever.
And then we have the thugs of Stoke to visit in their stadium before we finish the season against at home against the other team from Liverpool : Everton.
So the fixture list is out. We can start to make plans to visit the Emirates in the next months with our supporters club. Bring the new season on I would say, just bring it on!
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