By Chris Toronyi
The magic of the FA Cup is what we're told. Does it exist? Well, the result yesterday certainly added to the magic FA Cup kettle.
But I must say, was it really magic or was it a team that mentally refused to give up? OR a team that still has difficulties with set-pieces and crosses into the box? It's probably a bit of all of those and there is nothing wrong with that. The result is what matters.
Look, the reason I write this blog is to communicate my emotions, how I feel, not to dive into the possession details, tackles won, etc. So, with that said, was I boiling when we went 2-0 down just before half time? Yes! I had left a couple minutes early to walk to one of our coffee shops beforehand, listening to the match on my phone when they screamed "another goal at the Emirates!"
Surely it was for us! But yet again, we were countered. It happens. When you press like we do, you're going to open yourself up to a wider field to defend. And sometimes we'll pay. We did. Obviously.
When I returned home for the second half I couldn't have been more proud to be a Gooner. (But yes, I had to place all my kits back in the dresser as I was about to have a bonfire in the backyard.) We pressured, we played forward, we were Arsenal. As we all know, when you press, make the other team think, and play out of the comfort zone, good things will happen.
And boy did they. Two penalties and a wonder goal by Theo. Kidding about the Theo goal, but I will say that the aggressiveness of his play was rewarded. All three goals were the result of aggressive, forward play.
Is there an argument that it was two games within a game? Sure. But sometime that argument makes no sense at all. We played 90 minutes of football on Sunday - some of those minutes we love seeing at Arsenal, and others we'd rather not see again.
It was Arsenal. It was somewhat magical.
On this week's Arsenal America Podcast we'll have Duncan Castles, writer for The Sunday Times, The National and blogger 7amKickoff. Next week's podcast will have Matt Law from The Daily Express and Misha Sher, formerly of SoccerEx, now at Rangers. You can find it in the usual places on Thursday evening.
'Stateside Gooner' Chris Toronyi is a longtime Arsenal supporter and the host of The Arsenal America podcast, available every Thursday evening at ArsenalAmerica.com. You can read more of Chris' thoughts on Twitter.
The views expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect those of Arsenal Football Club or Arsenal Broadband Ltd.31 Jan 2012