I’ve just got some quick thoughts/feelings on last night’s game, which I’ll go into more detail on in tomorrow’s post:
The Aaron Ramsey injury was ridiculous and unfair. It cannot be a coincidence that we have had three players taken out by opponents in the past five years, ending in serious injuries. After ignoring the opportunity to put things right after Eduardo’s leg break, the FA need to sort things out quickly. Fortunately Ramsey’s country of birth should make it far more likely that something is done.
On a personal level, Ramsey’s injury reduced me to tears. I couldn’t believe it. A 19-year-old on the rise, in superb form for one of the best teams in the world and he gets taken out. One of Ramsey’s best attribute is his natural bottle and willingness to fight hard in the middle of the pitch and I do hope he can get that back.
I am sad for Ramsey but the fact that the team were able to go on and win made this the best game of the season for me. Our goals were terrific, we took our chances and were able to compose ourselves brilliantly after a period of shock after the injury. A complete team performance under incredibly difficult circumstances has left us just three points off the top of the table. Remarkable and a clear sign that we have the character and bottle to go on and win the title.
Cesc Fabregas’ contribution and leadership against Stoke was unbelievable. Not only did he dominate the centre of the pitch in his usual fashion, but produced four moments in the final 15 minutes that underlined his status as a cool, composed player and an inspirational leader.
First he scored the winning penalty under extreme pressure, knowing full well that a miss could have ended our title charge. Second, he set up Thomas Vermaelen for the third when it would have been easier to take a shot of his own. Third, he brought down one of the Stoke players from behind and followed it up by putting a finger to the lips to Tony Pulis, as if to say “We’re Arsenal and we will not be pushed around.” And fourth, he pulled the team together in a huddle at the end of the match to make them realise what they had achieved and underlined the fact that they achieved it together. Absolutely inspirational stuff.
Have your say on Arsenal’s 3-1 win over Stoke by leaving a comment.