Tuesday 4th October 2011
From a neutral point of view, nobody can argue that we didn’t deserve to take something from Sunday's game. We have been going long enough to realise, however, that it's goals that count and consequently you don't always go home with what your performance merited.
Walking up Tottenham's High Road pre-match felt a bit odd this time round. Not just because of the uncharacteristic blistering heat but also for most of us it would have been the first time we have been there since the problems back in August. A number of recognisable landmarks are now not there or have visible scars, quite a sobering reminder of the troubles.
Once in the away end however, the enormity of a North London derby hit home with all the feelings and emotion that goes with it.
For much of the game I felt we had the upper hand but the fact still remains we conceded two goals. Gerv, Theo, RVP and Rambo all enjoyed first-half opportunities so to go in at half time behind was disappointing to say the least. Spurs' scorer looked like he handled the ball, TV replays have proved that, but in those situations sometimes they go for you, sometimes they don't. I get more frustrated at incidents where the officials have a perfectly good view and get it wrong. They are human and if they had seen it as we have on the replays, I'm sure it would have been disallowed.
For the first 20 minutes or so of the second period, we absolutely battered them, our one goal and the ensuing jostle being the least we deserved. It was at that time however, that we didn't quite press home our considerable domination.
As both teams tired in the latter stages it was going to take a mistake or a wonder strike to grab the winner. It came with probably an element of both but unfortunately at the wrong end for us Gooners.
Despite a late flurry in and around our opponents' box it wasn't to be and we came away with nothing.
Another disappointing away day of course but I cannot say I was disappointed with our effort, desire and overall performance on the day. Conceding goals continues to be our problem but we are all aware that the players are trying to eradicate that from our game.
That will prove a little more difficult of course, having lost Bac to injury. One of our best, most consistent and experienced performers, he will be missed and Jenks will have a tough job to fill his boots, a challenge I am sure he is relishing.
Before we go into the international break I thought I would give my slant on the 'chanting' issue that has come to the forefront of British football.
I genuinely am not going to single out any songs, clubs or players in particular but I do believe we have to be very careful as to what comes under the banner of 'tongue in cheek' football humour, be it aimed at others or indeed in support of our own.
We as fans are as responsible as anyone in deciding what is just 'funny' and what steps over the line but before there is a knee-jerk reaction to the current media coverage around the country, I would hope detailed discussions take place first as to what is wrong and what is right, involving the authorities, fans and the general public.
Enjoy the two week 'break'.
FrankCopyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 4 Oct 2011