I think I have some anxiety regarding the game against Man Utd on Sunday.
I just woke from a dream where Gabriel Jesus was sent off really early for a foul, but just a foul. It wasn’t even a booking but he got a red card and there was no VAR check which would have shown he barely even touched the man. Unfortunately for Arsenal, I was also playing in this game and was absolutely raging at this decision.
I decided the best course of action was to try and kick the absolute shit out of Antony. Which I was successfully doing until I too fell foul of the referee and got booked, probably because of his theatrics and not the fact I was trying to rip his ear off. Then, Arsenal got a corner and I decided this was the best chance we had to score. I turned to a teammate who was hanging back and told them, if United break, just stop it however they could. Make the foul. They nodded.
Which is how Sigourney Weaver, who was that teammate, got a yellow card just moments later. I woke up and still felt furious at the red card. Frankly Howard Webb should be brought to justice and, in my opinion, imprisoned on one of those island jails from which there is no escape. I don’t just mean because of what happened in my dream, I think this should be his punishment for presiding over this motley crew of so-called referees. Send him to the Isle of Man or Alcatraz or something.
I also don’t appreciate seeing Emile Smith Rowe linked with Chelsea. This simply cannot be allowed to happen. It would be worse than if there was a worldwide election for President of Earth and Phil Collins won it. I presume it’s just some online chatter rather than anything of actual substance, but you have to take into account the immutable rule of rumour: When it’s one you really want, there’s almost never any truth to it. When it’s one you’d hate, chances are there’s no smoke without fire.
Sort of like when you’re linked to Willian and you say to yourself ‘Nobody in their right mind would ever do that’, and then a week later there he is and you have to try and convince yourself intelligent people must have had a good reason to do it. Nothing like being gaslighted by your own football club.
Anyway, if Fabio Vieira has taught us anything, it’s that a good 30 minutes can completely change the way people think about you. He was excellent on Saturday, and he’s a player many people had significant doubts about. Obviously we need to see him do this with greater consistency, but his impact against Fulham was such that nobody is saying he’s very small and we should loan him to a league where he can play against farm-hands and oafs to toughen him up.
I wish, if Mikel Arteta really had to take Martin Odegaard off, he’d have put ESR on rather than Jorginho. Which isn’t a criticism of the Brazilian Italian, it’s more about how we approached the game when Fulham went down to 10 men. If you want to score five, six, seven goals, put on a player who might help you do that. Or, at the very least, don’t take off a player who scores and assists with the frequency of Odegaard.
Anyway, when his chances come, I hope Smith Rowe can do what Vieira did and give Arteta something to really think about. From a fixture in the first team he’s become something of an after-thought, which is a real shame, because he’s a player I love watching. And if there is any substance to this Chelsea stuff, I will be furious and I promise you I will take it out on Antony. Possibly with a length of copper pipe.
Right, I have to have some breakfast. For your listening pleasure, there’s an Arsecast Extra below, and we have an episode of The 30, rounding up all the Premier League action, over on Patreon.
Bye for now.