Bolton 2-1 Arsenal – 24/04/11 – (Premier League) 25 April, 2011Posted by lasagnechef in Arsenal News.
Well that’s it; done. I’ve come to get used to the title race coming to the end but this year I really hoped we could go all the way and despite hoping and hoping after draw after draw it is finally over now after yesterday’s loss to Bolton. In a way it’s pretty relieving, no more hoping and dreaming, just whatever happens happens and we look forward to the new season.
It’s all very similar to the way it fell apart last season, a bad April month taking us from a great position to completely out of it in the space of a few weeks. It’s kind of depressing, but it was coming really. It’s been coming since we lost the Carling Cup final, since we drew 4-4 with Newcastle, since we lost a 2-0 lead to Spurs, since we lost a 3-1 lead to Spurs, since we scored against Liverpool in the 98th minute and didn’t win… I could go on and one but all of these games are examples of where our confidence has been absolutely destroyed, hence the terrible run in. Wenger keeps going on about our mental strength but it is our complete and utter lack of this that has been our downfall. I now can’t stand it when Arsene mutters those two words in the hope that if he says it enough it will be true, well it’s not – we’re in pieces and we need sorting right out.
However – all that needs to come in the summer though. I understand the frustration at the moment, that comes with falling out of the race for silverware but there’s nothing we can do at the moment. The summer is the time for change and I hope it is a very busy summer indeed. But we’ll leave that until then, all we can do now is try and enjoy the rest of the season as much as we can and just support them in the race for 2nd or indeed 3rd.
We started the game really brightly yesterday, we came out flying and it caught Bolton out a bit. I thought we should’ve had a penalty early on when Walcott was brought down but it wasn’t to be. We kept pressing though and we looked likely for an early goal. After time Bolton found themselves back in it; with every one of our misplaced passes and defensive slips the home side’s confidence grew as ours limped.
We had a few chances but the way things were going I wasn’t surprised when Bolton opened the scoring in the 38th minute. Sturridge the scorer from a corner after we failed to keep it out. They probably deserved their half time lead, we started well but that counts for nothing and they looked the more dangerous in the first half. Cesc had a shot blocked and I think we had one other chance but Bolton were almost through on goal a couple of times and really should’ve scored earlier than they did.
We needed to come out in the second half and sort it out but we nearly made it a whole lot worse. Djourou conceded a very soft penalty and it was up to Szczesny to keep us in it – and he did saving Kevin Davies’ poorly struck spot kick. If that had gone in then I fear what might’ve happened but we actually equalized not long after the penalty save. A nice drive towards the box, into the feet of Nasri who laid it off for Robin again who struck it low inside the post. A nicely taken goal and it looked like we had some confidence back. We spend most of the second 45 in Bolton’s half of the pitch, we were going for the winning goal and we were desperate for it.
However again just like the first half, every time we failed Bolton improved. They were catching us out on the break a few times showing us that we were still in danger of losing this one. Wenger threw on Chamakh in the 64th minute taking off Alex Song, there was no doubting that we needed to win.
Out best chances came to Samir Nasri. First he found himself clean through thanks to a great lofted pass from Cesc or Robin, can’t remember. I thought, ‘Goal.’ Had to be. Samir from earlier in the season would’ve stuck that in whilst already thinking about his celebration but he struck it right at the keeper and the demise in his form in front of goal epitomizes the dip in the whole team’s attitude. A few minutes later he had the chance to put it right when Chamakh nodded it down for Samir in front of goal but again he couldn’t put it away. I couldn’t fucking believe it.
We were desperate for a goal, I wanted us to score so much. Not just to keep us in the title race but to at least make next weekend’s game a bit more exciting. I had almost conceded the title after the Spurs game but I still hoped that we might keep the race interesting by beating Bolton.
Instead it was a 90th minute header from Bolton to put the cherry on top. There was no coming back from it, there was no way we were going to score two goals even in the 5 minutes of extra time and with that poor defending from yet another corner went our 2010/11 season.
So instead of hoping to at least keep next Sunday’s game versus United interesting I now find myself thankful that Chelsea overtook us so that United can’t win the league at our ground this weekend. God it’s fucked up being a Gooner.
The collapse since the Carling Cup Final has been incredible. I always said that winning that trophy would give us confidence for the rest of the season but the way we lost it ended up being a larger blow than anyone could’ve imagined. That last minute cock up between Szczesny and Koscielny has cost this season dearly and we all just need the season to just be over now.
It’s very sad to know it’s all over and I don’t see myself bothering to go again this season. It’s not that I’ve given up on them or anything like that or I can’t be bothered to go because we’re not in a title race. I just can’t really afford to spend that much money on a ticket, travel, food and drinks just to let down by the same mistakes time and time after again. It’s getting fucking boring and it’s making me skint!
I’m craving change; I’m utterly fed up of seeing us fall at the same hurdles every game, month, season. A change of manager? Who knows, to be honest right now I wouldn’t mind. A change of players? One or two positions still need serious sorting out and if Wenger can’t see it now then he really has lost it. Maybe something else needs changing, but now is really not the time. Lets just try and enjoy what’s left of the season because I know in two or three months I’ll be missing the bastards again!
Oh it’s tough being
a football fan an Arsenal fan. But we keep going and our next target is to try and end the season on some high with a win over Man United.
Thanks for reading.