First things first. United were the better team last night, no bones about it.
So, lets pick at the bones. We went 4-5-1 but without the one. Well, I say without, Adebayor was on the pitch, but to say he was going through the motions is an understatement of gargantuan proportions. There were only "token" efforts to run for the ball, challenge or win a header, a piss poor first touch and an inability to pass or hold up the ball. the guy was total waste of space last night. God only knows why Wenger waited until the 80th minute to drag his sorry arse off the pitch and replace him with Eduardo. With that clown up front, we were impotent as an attacking force.
He needs to go in the summer.
Diaby was also equally shocking last night. Poor first touches, an inability to pass and a love for turning into trouble in vulnerable areas made him a liability, while Theo Walcott struggled throughout with poor form, no real will to attack his man with pace and Rooney tracking back to double team him with Vidic, and not in a sexy double team kinda way either.
In a game when we couldn’t afford passengers, we had 3 in key positions.
F**k me I’m writing like Miles Palmer.
Wenger’s team selection was also poor. Playing Song ahead of Nasri and pushing Cesc into the hole? Might have worked against Boro, but they’re sh**e. Nasri proved in November that he’s a potent attacking force, why not use him as one? And having Bendtner on the right wing crossing to Adebayor? That a guy who can’t cross trying to cross to a guy who refuses to jump for headers! Madness!
Ok, enough of the negatives. Lets put some positive spin on last night. Almunia kept us in the tie with an astounding first half display. Kieran Gibbs is getting better and better, the lad doesn’t look like a 19 year old with just 5 premiership appearances to his name, he’s got maturity beyond his years. He frustrated the Ladyboy all night, who had to resort to diving (shock horror) and then promptly throwing all of his toys out of the pram. It was only when the tranny switched sides that he got a little more joy, that good was Gibbs last night.
In the second half we established ourselves a little more, and while because of that useless c**t up front and Theo’s shocker we offered little in attack ourselves, the Ladyboy’s howitzer off the bar and Giggs’ offside goal were all that the Plastics could offer. Defensively a massive improvement from the game a week before at Anfield.
But vitally, as little as we offered last night, we could have been out of this in the first half hour. But you know what, we’re not, it’s only one nil. We’ve got a second life, another bite of the cherry, another ride of the whore (is that a real saying Francis? Seriously? Fair enough…) Yes, one goal for them on Tuesday and we’ll need three, but I honestly believe, hand on heart, that last night was their chance to take this tie and put it to bed,and they didn’t.
I believe, next week, we’ll do them.
Sod logic, there’s a sense of destiny about this. Eighteen days shy of the 20th Anniversary of that night at Anfield (yeah, I’ve got goosebumps too), and we’re in the same position. Facing the champions of England and needing a two goal victory.
This isn’t over. This is just the beginning. Where we go from here, is up to us.
Sorry about the Matrix references!