As I was waking up this morning I lie in bed wondering what it was that I would write about, after all the last time we played Burnley was a stinging 2-0 defeat in the Carling Cup at Turf Moor. They aren’t quite the same team as that day and nor are we.
But then it struck me, they had won against Manchester United earlier in the year at Turf Moor, I wonder what their home record is…
Away from home it’s safe to say that Burnley are mostly (mostly) a pushover 0-1-7 with their only draw away coming at the hands of the draw masters Manchester City. Worse, on the road this team has only scored 8 goals and have conceded 27 to lead the league in that category. If only we were playing them at the Emirates.
But we’re not, we’ve got to go to Lancashire and get three points tonight, at Turf Moor where these pesky Burnley Bees* have managed a damn fine home record of 5-2-1 scoring 12 and conceding 7. The boss is right to say that the team cannot lose focus today.
Brian Jensen, the Burnley Beast will be between the sticks today and will hope to put on a similar display to the one he put in against the Carling Cup kids, blocking all shots and providing the solid wall for Burnley to spring their counter attacks from.
Arsenal, for their part will be sadly missing our third string left-back, Armand Traore. I told you to cross everything and you didn’t listen now did you? Look at what you’ve done, Traore is out for at least two games (Burnley and Hull). Meanwhile, the boss has said that Silvestre will get a chance to impress everyone with his left-back skills by exclaiming “that’s not good news for Silvestre!”
That’s it, folks, we can’t dip any deeper into the left-back bin than Silvestre, unless you want to play Vermaelen there and put Senderos in the middle.
Pray to your various gods that Silvestre stays healthy.
Meanwhile, starting center forward Andrei Arshavin is impressing many with both his goal-scoring prowess and his pain threshold with the boss exclaiming
I have not met many with his pain threshold. I’ve had a few [brave players] – the Nigel Winterburns, Bouldy, Dixon, Keown – they were tough boys. Andrey is a hard boy too, especially for a forward.
It’s about time we had someone in this team who would take a licking and keep on kicking. Look at the list of names Wenger touted, not a one of them are from this squad, except our center forward, and that’s a bit sad. Maybe his toughness will rub off on some of the others?
But that’s for the future and last night the boss warned everyone, pundits, journos, bloggers, and the players, not to look too far into the future. We need to stay focused on the task ahead, stay vigilant against complacency, and be up for today’s match:
The real message we have given out [after Sunday] is that Arsenal is ready for a fight and that we do not give up. But to think that we can relax would just demonstrate we are not very intelligent. I believe we are.If we have learned one thing from the beginning of the season until now, it is that every single team has to be considered very seriously and we have to be highly committed and focused. I am impressed by Burnley’s home form and it is another big game for us. But I am convinced that, with a great performance, we will come back with the three points.
Exactly right, 3 points are critical today to keep our title charge on track and to prove that Liverpool on Sunday was not a blip but a full on change of attitude in the dressing room. We will need a great performance to do it, the kind that we had during the second half at Liverpool, but I feel it in my bones, this team is ready to do it!
Right, viewing here in my town is limited, Doyle’s first showing today is at 3pm and I will be down there for that. Also, Doyle’s have London Pride on tap and that’s what I’ll be drinking. Stop by at 3pm and buy me a beer!
*I know they are called the Clarets but their mascot is a bee.