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Arsenal's Winter Games In 7 Words Each

We’re nearly three weeks into what most people who use the Gregorian calendar would consider a new year. By this point, most of you have probably already given up on those pointless “resolutions” you pretended to care about in the start of the year, and have reverted back to your old ways of comfort.

Good on you.

I morally oppose the concept of New Year's Resolutions - mainly because people start trying to convince me off of my sofa - so I never actually made any. I considered writing a blog that just consisted of me making resolutions for every Arsenal player to compensate for my lack of personal resolutions, but all of them just ended up being different variations on "Don't get injured so much." Perfectly reasonable, but perhaps not the most interesting read.

So instead, I guess I should do what I'm here to do and talk about Arsenal. My impromptu winter break has been far lengthier than it should have been, which means I've got a whole lot to cover. I'm a man who appreciates efficiency, so for the sake of my own sanity and your precious time, I'm going to sum up each game (and maybe a little more) in exactly seven words.

Arsenal 1 - 0 Southampton

Dominating, wasteful, Forster incredible, Alexis being Alexis

Cavemen 3 - 2 Arsenal

Thugs, abysmal first half, not enough second

Galatasaray 1 - 4 Arsenal

Great when we don't have to be

Arsenal 4 - 1 Newcastle

Brilliant Arsenal, sh!t Newcastle, Mason + Tiote = twatfest

Liverpool 2 - 2 Arsenal

Played sh!t, nearly won, typical Arsenal defending

Arsenal 2 - 1 QPR

Solid performance, Rosicky and Alexis rocked it, and I'm breaking my seven word rule to mention that this is the first game in a long time that I was able to go to (since I live in America and all that). Fantastic experience, cried a little bit. Merry Belated Christmas.

West Ham 1 - 2 Arsenal

Played well, should've been way more clinical

Southampton 2 - 0 Arsenal

Awful all-round, Wojciech grabbed a smoke

Arsenal 2 - 0 Hull

Solid showing, Alexis quality, Coquelin thoroughly impressive

Arsenal 3 - 0 Cavemen

Still thugs, Alexis absolutely brilliant, f*ck Arnautovic

Manchester City 0 - 2 Arsenal

Hugely impressive performance, learned from past mistakes

cazorla

Overall Review of Arsenal During DNArsenal's Winter Break

Referees appalling, Arsenal's form having mood swings

Overall Review of Arsène Wenger During DNArsenal's Winter Break

Please just get a new coat, Arsène

Overall Review of the Majority Arsenal's Fanbase During DNArsenal's Winter Break

Fickle, obnoxious, crack wider than a pornstar's

Overall Review of DNArsenal During DNArsenal's Winter Break

Lazy, excessive chocolate oranges and Jaffa Cakes

And we're up to speed. It's almost like I never even took an irresponsibly long break.

So, a surprising amount of ups and downs over an eleven game period, except for the fact we're Arsenal, and it really isn't that surprising. Oh, what I would do for a long spell of consistency.

Having said that, we might just be approaching such a period. With seven wins, a draw, and a loss from our last nine games, our form isn't looking too bad at all, especially considering one of those wins was an utterly brilliant performance against Manchester City.

One of my biggest criticisms of Wenger has been his seeming inability to change his tactics when needed. Luckily, he proved me totally wrong on Sunday, and I am incredibly glad he did. The discipline we showed in stifling any City attack sent our way was more beautiful than any of the free-flowing attacking football that we've seen so much of over the years.

Coquelin has already proven himself, in my eyes, as a quality solution to our infamous holding midfielder problem. I understand he may not be particularly effective on the ball, but the way he's dominated the middle of the pitch in every game he's played has just been awesome. For now, he's quelled the need for a big signing in the defensive midfield position. Whether or not we'll look to bag one in the summer is largely dependent on how well he plays for the remainder of the season. If he keeps playing as he did against City, I don't think we'll need anyone else.

Cazorla was even more impressive, not only providing a ridiculously skillful catalyst of breakaways, but also putting in a shift in defence, with two tackles, three interceptions, and five clearances to show for. It was a rugged, yet simultaneously beautiful showing from the little magician who seems set on making Ozil's comeback as difficult as possible.

I’m so glad that he’s in such scintillating form, especially after the doubts surrounding his quality last year. He’s even better now than in his first season at the club, and that’s not an easy feat. If you have any hint of dislike towards Santi hidden away in a cold, dark corner of your heart, just watch this.

Putting aside the individual displays, the team itself looked more united than it has for a very long time. The constant organisation and reorganisation throughout the game serves as evidence of the focus that such togetherness can bring to a side, and it's what helped us survive 90 minutes at the Etihad with a clean sheet.

However, we wouldn't have been able to win the game if it weren't for our skill on the break. It's one thing to be able to defend the absolute sh!t out of a game, but it's another to be able to do it and score two goals. The balance between attack and defence was completely spot on, as were the tactics and team selection. Overall, a fairly brilliant day that's put me in a wonderful mood.

 

With Walcott, Ozil, and Wilshere all on the verge of a return, it does appear as if Arsenal is on the up. With one or two defensive signings in the next couple of weeks, I think we'll be able to comfortably land in third place. If we exit the transfer window with a 17 year old Pole as our only signing, well, I'll let you decide what could happen.

 

The only significant news I missed during my winter break was the Champions League draw. For once, we got what looks to be the easiest opponent available, so you can be sure we'll balls it up.

 

Other than that, I don't have much else to say. Next Sunday is another stop on the road to keeping the FA Cup, this time at Brighton. We should win, and it could be a chance to see some of our youngsters in action, which is always interesting. Potential new signing Krystian Bielik might even feature to make his debut. He looks good on YouTube, so he must be world class.

 

'Till next time.

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Tags: Arsenal FC, Cazorla, Goonersphere, Wenger, Arsenal Football Club, Coquelin

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