Football FanCast guest columnist Ray Shepherd feels that
Arsenal success this season depends on a certain Andrey Arshavin.
During the Wenger years at Arsenal we have been blessed to see an array of
worldly talents ply their trade, firstly at Highbury and then the Emirates.
The roll call will list names like Henry, Viera, Petit, Overmars, Pires,
Fabregas and my personal favourite Bergkamp, but I have to concede that a
certain little Russian is driving his way up that list every time he dons the
Arsenal shirt; Arshavin has been an absolute breath of fresh air at the
football club and in may ways, a much needed one.
I understand Wenger has his philosophy and his great ‘masterplan' but
unfortunately it has brought with it an air of staleness that has certainly rubbed
off on the support, at the Emirates. A few people touched on the subdued
atmosphere that accompanied our 4-0 victory at home to Wigan and I have to
confess that I was less than enthused as well. Even Cesc looked far from
satisfied when he scored his goal and you do sense that there is a real lack of
life and energy in this Arsenal team, when Arshavin is out of the team.
The Russian not only seems to lift the crowd when he plays, but the team in
general and as many have suggested before, it would be great to have another
two Arshavin types within the team and bring some energy and excitement back to
the proceedings, not to mention a genuine cutting edge. I know the players
should always be motivated, but sometime you need that catalyst in there to get
it going and the Russian certainly provides that. I honestly believe our
success this season will solely depend on him, as he is one of the few genuine
match-winners at the football club.
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