Its finally here…phew. The start of the season… phew. I have noticed I am breathing differently today. More relaxed. Well paced. Like the horses at equestrian. The anxiety of the summer seems to be under check. The roller-coaster summer which went from questioning the Giroud signing to accepting RVP’s direction. Still not quite over the Song story though. Smiles-in-the-pool to traitor-&-sold in less than 2 weeks!!
Back to the calm. Breathe. I like it. Many reasons for it. Our squad is stronger. 3 new signings who have had a little time to mingle with the squad. Arsene Wenger seems to be holding the mighty hammer of Thor this summer and I am so loving it. He is not mincing words anymore, he is showing the boot and showing the door. One of the smartest brains in world football who has had to use all his might & mind during our thin periods. Wonder what would he be like when the loans are over. A mouthwatering prospect indeed. Because flip your yearbooks right before the Emirates stadium deal and you will see pictures with trophies. No brainer right? So snap out of nostalgia. Let’s talk about today. And why am I calm about it.
Right so we added to the squad, but the squad list is far from final. We might see 2 more players coming in and at least 4 players going out. At the end of which, we’ll be left with a bunch of men with the talent to wear the Gunner’s crest and the drive to fight for it. We might not win them all, we might not win this league and we might not win a trophy this year as well. But fight we will. Like men. Hungry men. They are all hungry. Poldi is hungry for his time. So is Cazorla & Arteta. Sagna must be so hungry he could eat a horse. Vermaelen & Rosicky always look hungry. And I wouldn’t even begin about Diaby and Jack.
The other piece of brilliance is Arsene’s brilliant magic trick of removing the One man in the One-man-team each summer. Henry>Cesc>RVP. So now its just many equals and I love the average quality in the squad today. No more am I going to lose sleep over one player’s injury. Not this year.
I am also calm perhaps because I know, like most gooners (even if privately) that we are not starting this race as title contenders, not even by Bendtners fat imagination. No one is expecting us to. And I think we’ve lived the ‘no-trophy-this-year-too! taunt so long that it stopped bothering us. All I care is for us to play well. For us to enjoy football. For us to bring back the one-touch football, our beautiful football. For the kind of football for which you could be rude to your in-laws. Many say Arsenal is the 2nd fav team of most fans in England. They support their team for the score line, and watch Arsenal for the joy of football.
Perhaps I am calm because of Arsenal’s integrity during these trying Nouveau Riche times. I am proud more than ever to be a gooner today, and that kind of happiness is like drinking cold water on a hot day in Bombay.
May be I am just calm because I am one year wiser, or may be its the contents of this fine bottle in my hand.
But I know it wont last very long. The goals, the players, new kits, new faces, new heroes, new strategies, fans & flags, whistles & chants, banners and drums, hope & revenge all have lined up right behind the black of my television screen. Eyes on the clock. Hands on the bottle. I wait. Calmly.