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September 23, 2018

I have no regrets over Arsenal dropping out of Champions League

FOILED: Liverpool’s Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez (R) vies with Arsenal’s French defender Bacary Sagna during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Arsenal at Anfield in Liverpool, northwest England, on February 8, 2014
FOILED: Liverpool’s Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez (R) vies with Arsenal’s French defender Bacary Sagna during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Arsenal at Anfield in Liverpool, northwest England, on February 8, 2014

As a Gunner I am not upset by the fact we are out of the Champions League. I expected it. Not because we were beaten 2-0 at Emirates in the first leg of the round of the sixteen, but because manager Arsene Wenger didn’t buy a striker in January.

Football isn’t a fluke, its preparation and Wenger failed to prepare. Am I upset generally? Yes I am but not about being beaten by Bayern Munich. I am upset at Wenger for thinking his mid level players like Olivier Giroud could deliver greatness.

Giroud is no better than any other key striker in nearly any English Premier League team, so why would he deliver greatness. To win trophies, you need special strikers and Giroud isn’t special.

In fact Arsenal doesn’t have a special striker. If Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain continues to progress the way he is; then he will become special; but something tells me that should he have a decent tournament in Brazil, then Arsenal will struggle to keep him in our ranks.

Theo Walcott is special but the regular injuries might spoil what could have been a great career.

His situation kind of reminds me of Michael Owen; one of the greatest strikers England has ever had; but with one of the shortest meaningful careers as a footballer.

Thanks to Wigan, Arsenal will win the FA Cup. And for someone whose been starving for nine years, I’ll take whatever brand of maji you have to quench my thirst! Arsenal as they stand now are an FA Cup winning side.

But if we are to win the big tournaments, then we need that one special striker to deliver for us. Let me bring in that dreaded phrase that is so common in March for Arsenal fans – “next season”. If Wenger does right by us in his summer buys, then we’ll look to win the League and/or Champions League “next season.”

One thing I am sad about already is how many players will leave the Emirates in the summer. Bacary Sagna is very likely to be on his way out over Wenger’s annoying rule that he cannot give an “over 30” a new contract that runs for more than a year.

Sagna has the African gene where you peak in your 30’s and he has become an even more reliable right back this season. Losing him now would be detrimental to Arsenal’s chances of winning a big piece of silverware next season.

Wenger, the FA Cup will be nice this year although we mustn’t think that Wigan will be a walk-over; but we must win at least the League “next season.”

Talk to me on @CarolRadull on twitter or www.facebook.com/CarolRadull

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