Capello’s “Yea Gods” Moment & Final Chelsea Thoughts
International fortnights are painful at the best of times; following a defeat they are even worse with the chance to rectify problems on the training ground banished to the four winds as the squad traverses the globe. For Jack Wilshere, his performances have been recognised and a return to the full England squad completely merited.
That said, he might have been totally miffed had he not been called up for if Kevin Davies can get an international call-up, the barrel is being well and truly scraped. In fact, we went through the bottom when Capello tried to get Emile Heskey to reverse his decision to retire from international football. I didn’t realise that he had done so in the summer for he gone missing in so many England performances since that night in Munich, I thought he had gone a long time ago. Lest anyone be in any doubt, I am mightily unimpressed that the most booked player in Premier League history is in the England squad. I am sure it could be worse but quite how escapes me at the moment.
Which means the navel gazing is left to us. The squad are hurting after the defeat, disappointment tangible. Which is a good thing. Andrey Arshavin was, as you would expect, the most direct in his thoughts,
arshavin.eu: What did Arsenal need in order to win or at least not to lose?
AA: Goals. Two, at least.
It’s a theme he had touched on early, noting that ‘the one who scores more, wins the game‘; a philosophy which is hard to argue with. Some arguments have been put forward – prinicpally in The Guardian – that lessons have not been learned from past defeats. Too much emphasis is being placed on this somewhat spurious theory, ignoring the circumstances such as injuries and suspension, surrounding the matches that were chosen as examples. In fact, the relevance of defeats at Blackburn, for example, in the context of a defeat at Chelsea is glaringly ill-conceived, especially when victory has already been achieved at Ewood Park this season.
That Chelsea are a bête noir at the moment, reversing the position we had in the past, indicates that there is a hurdle to overcome. Previous seasons has seen them overpower Arsenal but that did not happen on Sunday, the defeat due to lax tracking of an overlapping run and a poorly constructed wall. Lessons to learn? Concentration; lapses are punished by good teams. Is this a lesson for the manager to learn? Yes but more responsibility falls onto the players.
Bacary Sagna re-emphasised Arshavin’s point about scoring,
We have to learn from this game and we have to score goals because we had the opportunities to do it.
There were opportunities to open the scoring before Chelsea did so, crucial in the context of the match. Koscielny will probably score the next ten headers in that situation, proving that it was a freakish occurrence. That does not change the outcome of Sunday though. Had few real opportunities been created, there would be real concern about the paucity of performance. Too much of the good work is being forgotten in the aftermath. Rightly so, mistakes are concentrated but the negatives must not be allowed to direct the future. In equal measure, keep doing the good things, eradicate the bad.
The gap to the top is seven points. As Chelsea has already proven in the last fortnight, winning your home games against the top six is going to be the order of the season. Anything away from is a bonus. Last season, an eleven point gap was overhauled. It can be done again, especially at this early stage of the season. Belief is all.