Arseblog: Saturday 10th April 2004

april 10th

Arsenal did the business yesterday, Thierry Henry silencing the doubters (you have to wonder what it was about his previous 31 goals this season that had them that way to begin with) with a  stunning hat-trick, and another goal from Robert Pires (17 so far this season for him) added up to a 4-2 Arsenal win.

A nice way to put the disheartening defeats against United and Chelsea behind us. It’s Newcastle next up on Sunday, and it’s hard to see how much the boss can change the team around. Gilberto came in yesterday and did well, and while the common consensus was that Henry would only play one game over the Easter weekend, how do you drop/rest him after his performance yesterday?

Yesterday showed the spirit and togetherness in the squad. They worked so hard, Vieira put in a real captain’s performance, they got there through sheer determination. Hats off to them and the crowd at Highbury who sang and supported and I’m sure that made a difference to the players. Proper Arsenal stuff.

There’s no doubt the squad are feeling the pinch of all these games in such a short space of time. Thierry said afterwards “I don’t know how we produced that second half and I don’t know how we’re going to play at Newcastle on Sunday because we’re exhausted. But we were determined not to give up on our whole season. I’m sure people thought we were gone at half-time but we showed just how much we wanted it.”

We’ll wait and see what happens at St James’ Park then, and team selection is the AW’s problem. Maybe the likes of Wiltord, Kanu and Alaidiere might come back, and with Martin Keown getting a few minutes at the end, he might renew acquaintances with Alan Shearer.

On another note this is going to be last arseblog for a little while. Due to some family issues I’ve got to back to Ireland for a week from tomorrow. I’m not sure whether or not I’ll have the time or the inclination to update the site, so fingers crossed everything goes well for Arsenal, for you, and I’ll talk to you when I get back.

Take care.

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