You would have been forgiven if you had thought you were watching the Keystone Cops today at the back of Arsenals defence! They were caught cold twice in the opening quarter of the match by identical errors in their defence. These were not your ordinary mistakes, but two dreadful and schoolboy errors.
Firstly, the ball was threaded through the middle of the Arsenal defence, with Bale running along the back line; he suddenly accelerated around the back to meet the ball behind the defence. Not once did any defender look behind them, nor did any Arsenal player warn their colleagues about the manoeuvre. Bale had the easiest of tasks with just the goalkeeper to beat.
Only a few moments later, Aaron Lennon ran in from the right wing and again behind the back line of the defence without any defender even looking or noticing. He again, rounded the goalkeeper to score an easy goal. Arsenal managed to get one back in the second half when Mertesecker headed the ball goal wards from a corner. The ball skimmed off his head and deflected off Bale’s head into his own net. In truth, it was unjustified, but that is football. The match finished 2-1 to Tottenham.
Arsenal is now 7 points behind Tottenham for the fourth place in the Premiership and the Champions League place that goes with it. If Arsenal were to miss out, it will be the first time in Wenger`s reign that this has happened. Moreover, it will prompt even those neutral Arsenal fans into thinking that this season maybe should be Wenger`s last one in charge. The loss of revenue that comes with failing to get into the Champions League will be a massive blow to Arsenal`s hopes of buying any top players in the summer transfer window. Not only will they suffer a loss of income, but top players would expect to be playing Champions League football next season, not Europa League!
Arsenal have, for the last few years, always managed to avoid this scenario, however, it is staring them in the face this season. I think that there will be serious discontent from Arsenal fans at the next home game at the Emirates. I also would not be surprised to see a change in management next season.