As the title suggests, the 3 points was won mainly thanks to the heroics of Lukasz Fabianski. Barracked for his part in the Andy Carroll goal at the weekend, he put in a storming performance against Wolverhampton. If he in the past that mistake would’ve dented his confidence and cause his form to deteriorate in the subsequent games, this time around it is different.
Wolves gave a good account of themselves and peppered Arsenal with shots and headers. Fabianski was on hand on almost all of those occasions and when he wasn’t, Tomas Rosicky was there to clear off the line. The Pole’s last minute save was even greater given the fact that he saw the shot at the very last minute. With the ball coming through a crowd of players, it needed quick reflexes to get down and stop the ball. That he did and his early throw out to Rosicky helped set up the clincher for Arsenal.
That goal was the second Marouane Chamakh scored yesterday and 90 minutes of football had gone by in between his strikes. I can’t remember a game where a team scored in the first and last minute of the game but that is what happened for Arsenal. Rosicky was the catalyst for the first one, spunning around his marker and release who else but Alex Song on the right flank. Don’t ask me why our defensive midfielder is doing in a winger’s position.
Song delivered a delicious cross for Chamakh to head home. The Moroccan struggled on Sunday but show today just how valuable he is to the Arsenal cause. Arsene Wenger was quick to note just how decisive Chamakh has been this season. He has been involved in either scoring, creating chance or winning penalties. The last bit erred on the diving side but he has surely contributed his part to the team.
The contribution of Bacary Sagna to the win must also be celebrated with the same vigour. He was a rock in defence all night. His block early in the second half was just superb. Had he not reached there, Wolves would’ve tied the game. After our performance on Sunday, you can imagine heads dropping if the ball had went in.
I am a firm believer that everything should be equal in this world. We can argue about rough house tactics and bad tackling all day. However when we are the ones committing those senseless tackles, we cannot stand for those players even if he is the Arsenal captain. Cesc Fabregas walked a tight rope and scything down Stephen Ward. He could easily have seen red and I wouldn’t argue about the decision.
He did not have to make any contact with the player and could just as easily made the tackle blocking the path of the ball instead of going in on the player. You could say that he is not that type of player but it’s a lazy excuse we’ve heard far too much. Malicious or not, intent or not, only the player knows. Such acts cannot be condone at our club and I hope Wenger has a good word with him.
Credit to Fabregas and Wenger though, that they did admit fault for that foul and immediately said sorry to Ward. I’m also pleased to hear that Mick McCarthy has accepted those apologies and chose not to dwell on the topic. Though the same cannot be said of their captain, Karl Henry. He made another stud high challenge on Andrey Arshavin and should have also been sent off.
When something like this, you just know that the media will be baying for Fabregas’ blood. Just watch MOTD and you’ll understand why. They showed only the Fabregas challenge and yet totally ignored the fact that Henry did the same. It’s just another sign that prejudice of the media towards Arsenal. The fact that Lee Dixon was on the show and did not highlight the Henry incident is also very disappointing.
With Chelsea also winning their game yesterday, it was imperative that we got a victory as well. Strength and character were very much on show for Arsenal yesterday. The same kind of commitment must be shown in every game and not only when the team is being questioned or after any loss. It’s still a long season to go but if we can display the same determination like we did at the Molineux, then it augurs well for our ambition of lifting a trophy.