Jenkinson’s Hairy Tales, Confidence Is Key And Another Transfer Target Shot Down
A fairly lethargic midweek for Arsenal fans, nothing of major importance coming up in terms of news associated with us. The players had a couple of days off too, a consequence of us not being involved in any competition other than the league.
While all concerned wish Arsenal were still a part of the Champions League, the time off should help relax the players. Expectations of a third place finish are building, so complacency is not an option, but you feel they have deserved this mini-break after the intensity of most games in this seven match unbeaten run.
Everyone seems a bit cheerful this last week. The doomsday precogs amongst us have long since stopped spewing forth the venom of late August and early February, some even grudgingly admitting that actually, Arsene does know, and the rest unable to pick many holes in recent performances. Of course, I am waiting for all that to change with the first dropped points, but the sound of silence on that front presently, is quite pleasing.
This good nature all round is reflected in a report on Arsenal.com regarding the serious issues faced by the squad due to, wait for it, the haircut of Carl Jenkinson. It’s quite funny really, with Robin van Persie and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain somberly giving their views on the right back’s bizarre trim, and a word with the offending defender as well.
A month ago, such an effort at joviality would have been heavily chastised. The fact that the players and fans are now able to thoroughly enjoy this little bit of silliness, is proof of just how quickly our fortunes have reversed. Confidence is running high.
And according to Nigel Winterburn, confidence has been vital to the clubs current run of success. The legend spoke to Arsenal.com thus:
Confidence plays a big part when you are on a good run of form. You just never think you are going to lose, even when you go a goal behind. You always have the belief that you will come back and that the minimum you will get is a draw.
Some supporters were angry earlier in the season because they want this great club to be challenging for trophies. But now the team is on a terrific run and what they need to do now is keep that going until the end of the season, make sure Champions League football is secured and then get ready to challenge next season.
Considering the situation we found ourselves in after the first seven games, third place would be a fantastic achievement and something to build on for next season.
One player who definitely will not be joining us in the summer is Mario Goetze. The young German playmaker has inked a contract extension with Borussia Dortmund, which will keep him at the club until 2016. Talented as he undoubtedly is, we have our own riches in the centre of midfield with Wilshere, Ramsey, Rosicky, Diaby and even Oxlade-Chamberlain vying for a spot or two there. Also, Dortmund would have wanted ‘silly money’ for him, and we wouldn’t have paid that.
The German deciding to stay on is welcome news for us; it stops the unnecessary speculation leading to the inevitable disappointment at not signing a player we were probably never bidding for anyway.
Reports suggest we will offer a revised contract to our own highly accomplished midfield maestro from Cameroon. Alex Song has definitely earned it over the last two seasons. If he does sign, he will join Johan Djourou, Thomas Vermaelen and Tomas Rosicky, who have all penned new deals this season. It is a proactive step on the part of Arsenal’s management to secure the long term interest of the club, at the same time rewarding Alex for his increasingly influential performances.
That’s it for today. Before I go, just a reminder that ArsenalDepot has now taken the leap into the big bad world of Facebook. You can participate in the inaugural poll question here. And today’s poser is – would you play Koscielny at QPR or save him for City?
Until tomorrow, take hair…erm, care!