This congested December schedule is causing some crazy results in the Premiership as tired legs and injuries start to take effect. Huddersfield destroyed Watford away, Crystal Palace murdered Leicester away, and Arsenal and Chelsea struggled to 1-0 wins at home to minnows, and Burnley were lucky to get a draw at Brighton.
But Arsene Wenger was just relieved to come away with all three points against Newcastle after three games without a win, which saw us leapfrog Burnley and Tottenham back into the Top Four. As usual Arsenal created hundreds of chances but only scored once, but it was just enough for us to win the game. Wenger said afterwards: “I would say we had plenty of chances we didn’t take. You could see that we wanted sometimes to force it a little bit, the fact that we didn’t score recently, the chances we had, played a little bit on our mind. But I would have loved it to have been a bit more comfortable on the scoreline but what was even more important was to get the three points and that’s what we did. Overall we had a serious game and you could see that we played three games in six days and the third game is a bit more difficult physically.”
“We knew before the game it was a game where we had to be well-organised on set pieces, long balls and counter-attacks but we are an offensive team. I think we had plenty, plenty of chances but as long as you are at 1-0 you know a moment in the game comes where you are under threat and they have a chance. It is like that in the Premier League. When you look around, Chelsea played at home against Southampton and won 1-0. It is their third game. We are the only team basically that played Sunday, Wednesday, Saturday.”
The good news is that our next game, on Tuesday, is against West Ham in the League Cup, and Wenger is certain to go back to his youth players and reserves so our first team can get a well-earned rest. David Moyes has got the Hammers playing proper football again so it won’t be easy but who cares whether we win or not as long as our first team don’t play?