Spurs’ fall is compulsive viewing

WHEN the Elvis tune ‘The Wonder Of You’ blasted out of the PA, prior to the teamstrotting out for our first home game, a couple of weeks back, I mistakenly assumed that this was merely a tribute, to mark the 30th anniversary of the passing of the King of Rock n’ Roll.

I pooh-poohed the suggestion that this was to be the Arsenal’s new signature tune, as I simply couldn’t fathom the reasoning behind such a barmy choice of songs. It seems to me that there are only two criteria for the choice of music to mark the entrance of the teams into the arena. Either it’s a song which has some specific association with the club concerned, or a stirring anthem that’s been chosen for it’s capacity to rouse the passions of the crowd.

Heaven only knows which category Everton’s ‘Z Cars’ theme tune falls into, but I don’t doubt that there are plenty of Toffees’ fans whose hairs still stand up on the back of their necks, when the first few bars of this somewhat bizarre choice of music, blare out at Goodison Park before a big game.

Then again if all I have to grumble about is a musical difference of opinion, then I guess we’re in relatively good shape, compared to some. Considering many of us have spent the past couple of months suffering the merciless ‘bon mots’ of our Spurs mates, as they took such great pleasure in teasing us about the demolition of each successive cornerstone of Arsène’s empire, there will be few Gooners who’ll have failed to relish the delicious irony of the footie media’s focus on the skullduggery of the suits at Spurs.

It was almost worth enduring all that rampant pre-season optimism from the wrong end of Seven Sisters Road, if only because it’s so much more fun, watching them fall from such a height, as the Spurs board manages to shoot themselves in the foot, yet again. I suppose he could always make them an offer they can’t refuse, but I have to admit to feeling some sympathy for their Dutch Tony Soprano.

Fergie was perhaps the most relieved man at Old Trafford on Sunday. If good fortune had instead favoured the visitors, it would’ve been ol’ Red Nose on the end of the Glazer’s hook, as the grisly bait for the piranha-like feeding-frenzy of those tabloid pariahs. Yet nowadays, sadly the demands for immediate success are such, or more’s the point, the dread of being drawn into the relegation dogfight and the risk of losing one’s place at the Premiership trough, is so potent, that almost every manager is only a couple of bad results away from becoming the bookies favourite for the sack.

Consequently, even in light of the recent turmoil and the loss of Dein, his right-hand man, I can’t envisage our own Arsène Wenger wanting to swap the security of absolutely ruling the roost at the Arsenal, for all the relative uncertainty of a clean slate at another club. However you only have to witness the anguish that many managers experience on the touchline, to appreciate that the intense pressure of Premiership management is hardly conducive to one’s good health.

Listening to the post-match phone-ins at the weekend, I was surprised by the proposition that we were the most in-form side. Even the most avid Arsenal watchers will admit that, to date, Arsène’s current symphony has appeared decidedly unfinished. In fact, following the groans of frustration that greeted the umpteenth over hit pass, I turned to the missus to suggest that if you didn’t know better, you would’ve thought that we were the motley collection of mercenary strangers, rather than Man City.

Nevertheless, few Gooners will moan, least of all me, if Cesc continues to conjure up an 80th minute winner every week. Yet Fabregas’s goal cannot mask the fact that apart from a rare individual effort, he has struggled so far to produce the sort of midfield promptings necessary for a significant impact on the overall proceedings. In my opinion, the influence of an in-form Fabregas is vital, if this Arsenal side is to truly come to the boil.

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