Who: Arsenal v. Chelsea
What: English Premier League matchday 6
Where: Ashburton Grove, North London, UK
When: 4:30am PST
Referee: Martin Atkinson
TV: ESPN2 HD (USA)
Announcers: Probably Ian Darke and that Liverpool guy who doesn’t like Arsenal much (Steve McManaman)
I hardly think I need to remind anyone, even new Arsenal supporters, that Chelsea Football Club are the scum of the earth. Every component of the whole that comprises Chelsea FC is rotten; the owner has corrupted the very fabric of sport in England — artificially raising the prices other teams pay for transfers and for player salaries, the players are dirty cheats who are captained by a man found guilty of racially abusing another player but who will still play tomorrow as he mulls over an appeal, their fans are horrible people who think that self same John Terry is a “national treasure”, and even their twitter account reads like it’s written by a Yob.
Chelsea are the exact opposite of Arsenal. We are their nemesis and when we beat them, it’s the rightful embodiment of divine justice. That’s why it felt so good to win 5-3 at their hovel last season.
It’s all come full circle for Chelsea. Prior to the match last October, Terry was embroiled in accusations that he racially abused Anton Ferdinand. He played anyway and I have to think that decision would haunt him, if he were a man with a conscience. The Stamford Bridge faithful before the match waived banners supporting their hero. And when he scored off a corner on the death of the first half, the crowd erupted with glee at the prodigal son returned.
And the match went back and forth with first Santos equalizing at 2-2 and then Theo taking the lead with a powerful run through several fouls. Then Lukaku threw Santos to the ground after a loose pass from the Arsenal fullback and there was no call. Unmarked, Juan Mata made it 3-3 with a wondergoal from 30 yards.
But then there was a simple back pass and John Terry pretended to slip (at least that’s what it looked like to some) because he knew he would be beaten to the ball by Robin van Persie. Robin rounded the keeper and put the ball in the net. If I were to signal any one point, I think that was the beginning of the end of Terry’s career. Since then he has seen a steady decline in playing ability culminating in what looked like intentionally having himself sent off in the Champions League semi-final so that he wouldn’t have to play in the championship game.
And now Arsenal host Chelsea and this week John Terry has been found guilty by the FA for his racist abuse last year. And again he will play despite the looming 4 match ban. You have to wonder what kind of sociopath could not only play football through that, but play in one of his team’s biggest games of the year.
John Terry is the face of that team, the captain, and the first name on the team sheet. He epitomizes the club, the fans, and the owner. John Terry is Mr. Chelsea. And that’s why beating them is so fun. Because they are bucket of cunts.
So while Chelsea are come full circle and are back under the cloud of racism as should happen with their nemesis, there’s a new and more positive energy about Arsenal.
Steve Bould has the players all talking about defense. Wenger even admitted that the system he plays doesn’t need a defensive midfielder because defense is (suddenly) everyone’s responsibility. Though I would argue Arteta is still the most defensive midfielder in the team.
Podolski is giving interviews where he says things like “I hope to play with Cazorla for the next four years”. And Cazorla is making people forget about the traces of Barcelona DNA that are still left in the shower.
Arsenal’s defense have only let in four goals, Gervinho is scoring goals playing as center forward, Olivier Giroud got his first goal against Coventry, and even Theo Walcott scored a brace. It’s a good time to be an Arsenal supporter and despite the fact that Chelsea are going to be our toughest test of the season so far, there’s a good feeling about the team and the club.
So, put away the stats for a moment. Put down the financial reports. Ignore the history. Forget about Martin Atkinson. There’s going to be high drama tomorrow at 4:30am and time enough to analyze everything to death after the game.