By Walter Broeckx
I must admit when I looked at the team sheet before the match I did shake my head a bit. Ok no Per Mertesacker that was great. Also no Cazorla as I think he also was given a breather. But for the rest a rather strong line up with Özil and Ramsey and Giroud in the team.
Ok, it is clear for now Wenger doesn’t read Untold. Or follows my advice. But then again….why should he. I bow my head when it comes to knowing anything about football compared to him.
But nevertheless it took me the whole 15 minutes to get used to the idea of a in my opinion far too strong starting line up for this useless match. Each time a Norwich player came even near to Ramsey or Özil I jumped up and down in the sofa shouting at my computer screen: stay away from them!!! Shouting at Mason: blow the whistle you prick, blow it!!!!! Needless to say that he didn’t do it. As expected. Or certainly not enough. Özil gave him “the look” after some 15 minutes when again a foul was not given. I was shouting all kinds of things that better cannot be reproduced on the site.
In the first half I think that Norwich tried a bit to make it a nice farewell to the PL. And a shot from Redmond had to be pushed out for a corner by Fabianski who was given the start in goal ahead of Szczesny. But that was rather it for Norwich as far as I could see on my computer stream which I had to restart a few times during this match so I could have missed something. Sorry about that.
Arsenal had some great chances. Podolski with a one on one with the excellent Norwich keeper Ruddy (I rather like him as a keeper to be honest). Another great save from the same keeper when Giroud had a shot at goal that he turned over the crossbar. Whenever Arsenal moved up a gear we looked dangerous but no goals in the first half.
That changed in the second half. Arsenal dominated even more than before the interval and it was a matter of time before the Arsenal goal would come. And when it came…. my God what a goal. Some movement down the left, a ball to Giroud who looked up and spotted Ramsey on the right hand side. A perfect cross to Ramsey and and amazing split second later the ball was in the top corner and nothing Ruddy could do about that.
That was one hell of a volley. Unstoppable, precise in the top corner, a goal that you can admire time and time again. We do seem to have a habit of scoring exceptional goals against Norwich this season. I noticed in one of the replays that when Ramsey ran to the Arsenal supporters almost half of the Norwich supporters in the stands behind the goal from Ruddy even applauded that goal. Fair play to the Norwich fans. But this was pure football porn.
Not even 10 minutes followed another emotional moment for Arsenal supporters. And as Jenkinson is an Arsenal supporter himself from the days he knows the difference between red and white he celebrated as if just had scored the winning goal at Wembley.
Another attack from the left flank a low cross and Podolski his shot got blocked or his miscued his effort (don’t know – internet streams you know) and the ball fell kindly for the feet of Jenkinson how had joined the attack from his right back position to the middle of the field. The low ball hobbled past Ruddy and he ran off in wild celebrations to his co-supporters in the stands.
A moment that made me almost emotional. Nothing nicer than having a player who has been a fan whole his life and then scoring his first real goal in the PL for the club he loves and supports. For a moment I feared he would ran in to the stands but his mind took over just in time.
Then came one of the best moments of the match when Ramsey was taken off and I could be a little bit relieved. Still didn’t like the fact that Özil was out there but Wenger wanted him there obviously and who am I to doubt him.
And a few minutes later Diaby made his first appearance since March 2013. More than a year out. Finally back. The away fans cheered him on with lots of noise. Great work once again from our away supporters!
We could have scored a few more after that. But credit to Norwich as they never gave up and tried to score a last goal in the PL themselves. But Fabianski didn’t want to have his PL debut this season spoilt by a goal from the opposition. Or did he play in the PL this season? Not sure about that to be honest. Doesn’t matter he did a good job in keeping Norwich with nothing to celebrate.
So a rather easy win in the end. One great goal and one special goal. At first sight no injuries to our key players. Fingers crossed for a good training week with no new injuries. And then up to next Saturday. I will be there. Not at Wembley but in and around the Emirates. My God, can’t wait for it.
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