One can fully sympathize with Fiorentina's frustration at the clearly offside goal that gave Bayern their win. A draw had cruelly been snatched away by ignorant and obtuse officials. It would appear that Tom Hennings Ovrebo wants to remain controversial.
But what to do when a team shoots itself in the foot time and time again? Arsenal is the football equivalent of a Prince Phillip. A gaffe machine that gives endlessly. When do we call an intervention? It has been all season.
An own goal gift by Abou Diaby secures Man Utd a barely deserved win at home. Almunia and Clichy's horror show results in a shameful drubbing at the Emirates in the return encounter. Drogba's Arsenal killer reputation is kept alive by regular attacks of defensive dementia. Against Liverpool we clung on for15 minutes giving the ball away regularly with Steven Gerrard coming dangerously close to an equalizing PK.
This continued against Porto. By now Fabianski's horrific howlers have been discussed and dissected ad nauseum. Wenger's clueless choices in goalkeepers continues. But did you see how Sebastian Varela cut through Gael Clichy as if cheese, the soft creamy sort en route to that cross.
A premonition of sorts occurred before the bizarre sequences of events leading to the second goal as Sagna and Fabianski jawed about a mix up. There was just an absolute breakdown of communication at the back culminating in Sol Campbell and Fabianski's thoughtlessness. This is going to be a comedy classic that will be replayed through the years.
We have had street smart players in the past. Thierry Henry, Roberto Pires, Emmanuel Petit and Patrick Vieira come to mind. Players of undoubted talent but bringing to the pitch a certain level of opportunism. Remember Ryan Giggs quick thinking against Lille while their defenders were organizing the wall. Man Utd and Chelsea still have those players. We just don't have that with this team.
It has been a long series of lapses in concentration, defensive breakdowns, communication failures, and very little forward thinking that surface at inopportune moments. We have mixed the sublime and the ridiculous. And ridiculous reigns right now. We could have won at Porto but it proved to hard to let go of our Keystone Kops shtick. All the opportunities came in the first half as the second half degenerated into a dreary affair.
Having said all that, Arsenal did get an away goal and can return to the Emirates reasonably satisfied. The Porto outing makes Almunia look positively stellar in comparison and we should have him back for the second leg. William Gallas and Andriy Arshavin should return. A 1-0 scoreline in our favour should suffice. But this is Arsenal. We have a way of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
Here is a link to Prince Phillip's gems. Politically incorrect and appallingly funny at the same time >>