Young Guns On A Learning Curve

Arsenal’s young guns played exceptionally well last night in the Carling Cup quarter-final against a  Manchester City packed with international stars.

And yet they didn’t win. All it took was one break-away goal by City in the closing minutes, to seal victory.

2011–12 Football League Cup

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The young gunners were full of spirit and played with real passion, out-classing their more illustrious, mega-expensive opponents for most of the game. But the lesson they need to still learn is that fine, even exceptional performance does not win games – goals win games.

And taking your chances when opportunity presents itself is something this talented bunch of youngsters needs to get to grips with. That little bit of extra effort that does not materialize at the end of a superb passing movement, kills the sequence and frustrates the fans. Also, to be honed is the skill of making that split-second decision when to lay the ball off, or go for the shot.

But these skills and the extra effort will come; let’s hope sooner rather than later.

For now, it just gives me great pleasure to watch the making of greatness. Go Gunners!

Dear Mr Wenger, I know I said I wouldn’t, but…

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Granted. You’re probably the most revolutionary manager/coach in World football today. You’re a purist. You teach your players to play a style of football that is most pleasing on the eye – like poetry in motion.

But, what an embarrassing disaster on Sunday in the Carling Cup Final against Birmingham!

It’s great that you have eleven players on the field who all want to drive forward and score goals – yes even your goalkeeper [but not Chamakh – he still looks afraid to score]. You saw how eagerly Szczesny came way out of position in the game on Sunday. But seriously, the world is not ready yet for this exceedingly adventurous style of play. Defending is still an essential part of the game.

You need to have at least 4 players defending at most times. Please restrain their eagerness to behave like strikers. Maybe you need to get some big burly guys at the back who will be loath to venture forward due to the tiredness this causes.

Please get your defence sorted out. Take them to the Fireman’s Academy; teach them NOT TO PANIC!!!

There is much work to be done before your team can hold some silverware. But first they need to hold their nerve.

I trust you will do the right thing.

Your faithful fan,