There were suggestions from the TV pundits after Arsenal beat West Bromwich Albion on Thursday evening that it was something of a hollow victory, not only because our chances of the Premier League title are realistically over but due to the fact that there is no longer any pressure on the players to perform.
One good thing you can say about Arsenal since we last won the Premier League title is that, unlike other big clubs like Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man City, the Gunners have always finished in the top four and have always secured a place in the elite European competition that is the Champions League.
There were a lot of things that Arsenal needed to do right to stand a chance of overturning the home leg defeat against Barcelona when we met again in the Nou Camp tonight. As well as Barca not being at their best, the Gunners had to perform at our own top level.
From the Arsenal team selected by Arsene Wenger for the away leg of our Champions League tie with Barcelona, it looks liike Arsene Wenger was torn between giving it as good a go as possible in the Nou Camp and accepting that our chances are negligible and keeping some first team players fresh for the trip to Everton in the Premier League on Saturday.
I really hoped that the two goals he scored as Arsenal beat Hull City in the FA cup last week would spur the French international forward into the sort of form he was showing in the first half of the season, but Olivier Giroud was so ineffectual against Watford yesterday that he may as well have been at home watching it on TV.
Okay Arsenal let two goals in and that has left us with a mountain to climb ahead of the second leg of the Champions League tie with Barcelona. But it could and would have been so much different if only our attacking players had some sort of clue about how to put the ball in the back of the net.
The big question for Arsenal fans today was about who was going to fill the third forward position for this massive Champions League game against Barcelona, as the team selection of Arsene Wenger for the Hull game away int the FA cup had all but told us what team we would see tonight.
In his press conference ahead of the Arsenal v Barcelona match in the Champions League, Arsene Wenger spoke yesterday about how tough our task will be against Barcelona, the current holders, in the Champions League. As reported by The Mirror the Frenchman was full of praise for our opponents and especially their dangerous attacking trio of Messi, Neymar and Suarez.