Arsenal Fans Apologise
When you stood so fervently behind opinions you formed whilst angry and continued to espouse as the anger lingered for longer than it usually would, as a result of surrounding yourself with other angry people riling one another with obstreperous discord and irate agreement, it is understandable that apologising would be an almost impossible thing for your pride to allow.
Arsenal are through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup after a professional performance from the home side and whilst elation, and possibly relief, should be the dominating emotional response there are some who should maybe make a little room in their souls for a modicum of remorse and a simulacrum of shame.
It’s not my place to tell people how they should behave, think or feel but I believe that as a member of this Arsenal society I should be as vocal as the next person in expounding moral virtues such as “don’t judge a player before you see them play”. I should make it clear that not judging a player like Sanogo is not tantamount to declaring Wenger as the second coming whose mere gaze will turn Sanogo into a Drogba/Messi hybrid rendering the need for a world-class signing up front redundant. They are not mutually exclusive.
I do not disagree Arsenal require a “something from nothing” presence up front, much like Suarez who, were it not for Fabianski, might have score a few goals from such positions of seeming empty attack today. However, it is extremely obtuse to declare a match lost before a ball has been kicked because a young free signing who few have actually seen play and is coming back from injury is starting the match. Ironically, I am certain, that some of these narrow people will be screaming for him to start ahead of Giroud until the summer comes around. They might even be refreshingly original enough to proclaim his philandering is the true reason for them wanting him dropped; it’s a moral standpoint you see.
But on to the meat and bones of this post. I am a generous soul and I have taken some time away from my evening of jubilation to construct a letter of apology that can be used by those whose pride may not allow them to say what deep down they might feel they should. Only they can decide if this prefabricated missive is relevant to them.
I would like to apologise to you (the club, the players, the staff and the manager) for declaring your FA Cup journey over before a ball was kicked against Liverpool. I was wrong to believe that the league result last week was anything other than a freak result and doubting Wenger’s tactical ability was a fool’s errand that became apparent shortly into the match when I saw the defence sitting deeper and not exposing themselves against a pacey Liverpool side as they did the previous week by pushing up too high.
Contrition will be my side dish as I tuck into my nourishing supper of humble pie tonight having seen first-hand the raw potential the club saw in Sanogo and how impressive he was against experienced defenders in what was probably our most crucial game of the season so far. Watching a second-string Arsenal compete so thoroughly with a strengthened Liverpool side compared to last week was heartening and the belief I have so flippantly discarded every time we have had a set-back this season is something I promise I will try to cherish until May.
I cannot guarantee that I will not be disappointed or angry if we lose points or drop out of competitions and I know you accept that is part and parcel of football but I can assure you I will give my entire support in every game and afford you the patience your improved performances this season have certainly earned.
I shall also endeavour to appreciate that Wenger knows what he is doing when Arteta and Flamini play together despite me knowing it is not our best partnership but I now appreciate that not best doesn’t mean bad.
What seemed like prioritising the Champions League over our best chance for a trophy I now understand was a calculated risk that paid dividends. I shall not extenuate the squad before a ball has been kicked again and I shall endeavour to watch a few games before judging a player who doesn’t have a big price tag and look like a fool as I furiously back-pedal and pretend I always rated them like Morgan.
Thank you for today and best of luck in the rest of the cup.
Whilst I believe you shouldn’t judge a player before he has played or definitively declare a game lost before a ball has been kicked I respect the right of others to think however they bloody well please. I also reserve the right to disagree with them and snort as derisively at their views as they some of mine. If you have read this post and feel annoyed or reviled then I could say to you that I made the point of saying you choose how this post relates to you but I won’t, sort of. What I will say is, check the batteries in your humour radar, I think they are running low.
Just to be clear. I am not asking you to apologise. My “letter” was tongue-in-cheek. Do I think it is foolish to think some of the things I put in the letter? Of course, that’s why I thought it was funny. Do I think you should apologise? No, I do not. I am fully aware of the concept of evolving opinions.
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