The Table of Doom Update
Arsenal Current 78 Max 90 Man City(a) Newcastle (a) Brighton(h)
Man City Max 94 Brighton (a) Arsenal (h)
Man Utd Max 81 Brighton(a)
Newcastle Max 80 Arsenal(h)
Brighton Max 73 Man Utd(h)Man City (h) Arsenal(a) – kept because they play key matches.
The Table of Gloom
And so it is the Table of Gloom now. City destroyed us and Arteta is now useless, the players mediocre and we will be relegation candidates next year. Oh, woe is me!
Jesus and Zinchenko - overrated?
Nonsense! Rubbish! If I had said at the start of the season we would qualify for Champions league in April and still top of the league in May after beating Chelsea, plus fighting with City for the title close to the end, people would have said typical Gus optimism, never writes about reality. The reality is this week we have had a reality check and that we do need to strengthen, and maybe get rid of some players that are loved by Arsenal fans. Am I the only one who feels that Guardiola knew what he was doing when he dumped Jesus and Zinchenko? And that Xhaka still has a tendency to implode? And Partey seems to be playing with an injury? But despite all that, another win and we are guaranteed second, and in fact, we may already be second as the 2 Uniteds need close to maximum to catch us.
We wouldn’t care that City thrashed us if we win the league
In fact, before the start of the season in July, I wrote a comparison between City and us in which we came out badly. I had compared a possible top City 11 against a possible top 11 for us plus rated the managers and gave 11-0 to the Citizens. I gave only one draw which now looks ridiculous. On the basis that some players fail in the Premier league and Jesus was proven, although never a great goal scorer, I gave him a draw with Haaland. I did say I didn’t really believe that but I was trying to be optimistic. I predicted I would probably look stupid giving Jesus a draw. And so I accepted that City are better and on that basis should win the league. But I also said this:
“Judging player by player doesn't win championships - confidence, form and a winning mentality does.
We need our players to step up, to play without fear, and take the game to the opposition. We need a bit of luck, we need momentum, and a good consistent start. “
We did all that, except we have had some bad luck, particularly with VAR and injuries. I feel we need, at the minimum, a killer striker and centreback and midfielders not injury prone like Partey or capable of blowing up like Xhaka. And I am not happy with both Jesus and Zinchenko seemingly allowed to do what they like and ending up way out of position. They are not good enough players to do that. They should do their primary jobs, respectively score goals and defend, first. I, for one, would be happy to see them in their City role, warming the bench. But replaced with better players, whether bought or from the Academy.
We have hope in our hearts
Cancelo would be a great addition
Despite all that, we could still win the league, we have had a great season and tremendous support from the fans. We have excellent reasons to be cheerful, our players are the youngest in the league and should get better. We have several times come back from setbacks and shown character in scoring late. I feel Arteta knows all this, he knows he has moulded a team capable of challenging even the mighty City. It is his job to make any improvements necessary, and plan for the seasons ahead. I am confident he will.
As would Declan Rice
There is talk of Cancelo and Rice. I would be very happy to see those two. Also Mane if he will come. He is only 31 and could have a few more years. Those 3 and improvements from the young players as they get more football wise plus one or two Academy players pushing for places means we have tremendous grounds for optimism.
A cohesive winning collective can be accomplished by cleverness
City are a giant who have owners who are far more concerned about whitewashing their public image than making a profit. They have unlimited money and the recent spike in oil prices has made them richer. The Kroenkes, by contrast, are in it for the money, their public image seems secondary, and they are running it as a business. It means that Arteta and Edu must be clever, they must nourish what they have, and be ruthless in discarding those who are not of the class to create a long-term winning team.
Sheik Mansour - City's owner wants to make the UAE look good
Wenger did it against Manchester United, putting a priority on developing the players rather than buying big. United were the City of that time, big moneybags with top players in every position. And yet, despite all that Wenger went toe to toe with them, picking up trophies which Man Utd had easily won before then. United were hated by most opposition fans, just as City are now. Anyone remember ABU? Anyone but United. That would be ABC now. That seems to gel with what City are doing, they do make things look as simple as ABC, at their best.
Stan Kroenke runs Arsenal as a business
I believe we will, as long as we stay hungry, be capable of getting in the faces of City and anyone else who emerges. We could be Arsenal, the team who sends others home crying. The team with class, with tradition, and a fighting spirit which makes us greater than the sum of our parts. Forget the Table of Gloom or the Table of Doom, we have had a great season. C’mon the Arse!.
The true Table of Doom and Gloom
Everton were champions nine times
On a different note, at the bottom, it will probably be 2 former champions who go down. Leicester, Leeds, Everton and Notts Forest have all had their glory days. Southampton, who look doomed, have never won the league. But if they somehow manage a miracle, it will be 3 former champions heading for the door. I will feel most sad for Everton as I grew up among many Everton fans. They are by far the longest team in the top flight after us and I have always been happy they survived the several scares they have had. This year is harder, though. I suspect something like 36 points will be necessary. That is 7 points from 4 games and they haven’t come close to that this season. We play Forest and we could help them a little but they badly need to win and they are running out of time. I suppose they will bounce straight back up but their proud record will be gone.