The direction of Arsenal’s seasons in recent weeks has been one of an uncontrollable, free-wheeling bike ride downhill with disconnected brake cables. Yet when the club found something to be truly happy about bitter fans and media trolls have lambasted both supporters and players for their jubilation.
Arsenal’s inexorable season meltdown had threatened to reach a genuine watershed moment as the Gunners found themselves 1-0 down to Wigan in their FA Cup semi-final, only to rally late and win the game on penalties. The celebrations represented a side who not only acknowledged the magnitude of the occasion, but also an outpouring of relief. A loss would have been immeasurably disastrous for their season. But triumph kept dreams alive. If you can be mortified at defeat, you can be jubilant in victory.
For many of these, the facts have been overlooked.
Roy Keane: “These Arsenal players need a reality check. They’re celebrating beating a Championship team.” pic.twitter.com/qcGcTvaja4
— Football Quotes (@FootballQuote_) April 13, 2014
A word on yesterday’s game: the celebrations from the Arsenal players after scraping past Wigan on pens wasn’t the behaviour of winners. — Alex Hess (@A_Hess) April 13, 2014
Anyone stopped cringing from the Arsenal players celebrations yet? How the mighty have fallen after beating a Championship team on pens.
— School of Science (@SOS1878) April 12, 2014
Watching those Arsenal celebrations was like seeing a kid do a lap of honour for getting a B in his mock exams.
— Geoff Norcott (@GeoffNorcott) April 12, 2014
The idea that a group of top level professional footballers don’t have the right to celebrate progression into a major cup final is ludicrous. And to criticise a team of not being winners because they celebrate victory is quite frankly embarrassing in itself.
Every single one of these players have reached this level in their profession because they all possess a voracious appetite for victory. The day they no longer enjoy victory is the day they lose their competitive edge. And furthermore, to belittle the Arsenal players for celebrating the victory is to belittle Wigan Athletic; something nobody dared do after their victory over Man City at the Etihad.
But just to make sure, next time a team wins, make sure to run it by these critical folk before enjoying it.