I believe, the players believe and so should you: the Barca game was a success

Normally I don’t care about “moral” victories. But the barca game might just qualify. Yes barca was better, yes we lost Fab and Gallas. But the facts are, (1) we did not play our best, but didn’t lose, (2) we did not give up, and (3) we gutted out a draw. These are the games we need to go to the next level. Momentum is on our side because our players now know they can play with and beat barca. They believe and so should you.

First things first, the game met the hype. If all football could be played this way it would be better for the sport. It really is too bad these teams won’t meet in the final. I mean seriously, watching either team with the ball was an absolute treat for any person that just loves the game.

Anyway, the big challenge for Arsenal was mental. Our youth really weren’t sure if they could play with barca and it showed in the first half. But eventually we calmed down. Eventually we started to make them fear us -their back-line was desperate during our onslaught. And although it took nearly 70 minutes and 2 barca goals we found our strengths, their weaknesses; and, we found the confidence we need. Any doubt, go back and watch Song, Diaby and Nasri -no fear!

Don’t get lost in the hype. We exposed barca and our youngsters know it. Speed has never been a strength on the Peninsula and even with Messi, barca don’t have it. Frankly, if we connected on just 25% more of our midfield passes the game might have been quite different. I’ll chalk that one up to youthful excitement and inexperience.

So as we prepare for the next match, don’t let the boo boys get to you. We lost Arshavin, Gallas AND basically lost Fab as he hobbled around. But Barca could only get a draw. Re-read that. Diaby and Song played just like we needed, bossing the pitch. Clichy was all over the place and heaven help me, but Walcott and Eboue made the barca defense collectively pee their pants. Nasri is fantastic. If you don’t understand that. Go away now.

So yes, we only got a draw. But sometimes a draw is a victory. We have the heart and soul. Not only do I still believe, I’m looking forward to the next match. I love this team.

-the student


1 Comment

  1. Barca’s defence is very suspect against pace, as Arsenal’s first goal demonstrated. Arsenal will be kicking themselves for not exploiting it more in the first half.
    The sending off and the penalty were very harsh as the replays showed that it was Fabregas who actually appeared to kick Puyol.
    That said, the only advantage Arsenal have going into the second leg is the absence of Pique and Puyol. I still do not believe that Barca will be troubled at home by a side who were absolutely battered at their ground and who will be without their captain and best player.
    I only hope Arsenal don’t embarrass themselves at the Nou Camp and at least give something for their fans to cheer about.

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