Auba Finds His Smile Just In The Nick Of Time! By Dan Smith
I wrote in my predictions post how Arsenal could do with a win to take some confidence into the Benfica tie. Essentially the two games with the Portuguese giants could end our season. So with a lot of pressure already on Thursday’s game, it wouldn’t have been ideal to have gone 4 matches without a win.
Suddenly it’s Benfica who might be thinking it’s a bad time to play us. In their last 8 matches the Portuguese giants have taken just 11 out of 24 points, are 10 points off top, been knocked out of the League Cup and lost The Super Cup. So the under-pressure Jorge Jesus won’t enjoy seeing the Gunners finally click at home.
The only way you improve self-belief is by winning and build from there. Think of our form heading into Boxing Day. Beating Chelsea 3-1 came out of nowhere and suddenly we went on a little run.
So in terms of squeezing out as much confidence from the Leeds fixture as possible, Sunday couldn’t have gone better for Mikel Arteta. Not just do we travel to Italy on the back of 3 points and 4 goals but crucially a hat trick from Aubameyang.
If there’s one player we needed to have a good weekend it was our captain. It’s too early to say it’s the start of a hot streak but if he feels like the Auba of last year, then he can be the difference between us staying in the Europa League or not.
It’s not just the lack of goals that have been uncharacteristic, but his work rate and body language has returned to what it was in the final months of Unai Emery.
Auba’s post-match interview confirmed he’s been dealing with personal issues off the field, something he’s grateful for his employers supporting him with. He wouldn’t want something as serious as his mother’s health to be used as any excuse, but he’s clearly a player who needs to be happy to be at his best and in his own words ‘it’s time to smile again.’
Why he’s so popular with the fan base is he’s relatable. Despite being a millionaire he still loves super heroes, comic books and Wrestling. He’s what I would be if I was a footballer and rich. Maybe he’s one of those artists where it’s all or nothing?
Some can use adversity to make them better, others need to be feeling positive.
I believe to win any trophy you need some luck that can be out of your hands.
Could we sit in May and say thank goodness that four days before the Benfica 1st leg, Aubameyang found his 😃?
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