By Eduardo Maisonet, III / @edthesportsfan
Some could look at Arsenal’s 0-0 tie with Sunderland as a positive.
“Hey, at least we got a point. Right?”
That person would probably get thrown off a cliff if he said that around enough Arsenal fans.
It would also sound like someone who didn’t actually watch Saturday’s opening contest of the 2012-13 Premier League season. Yes, Arsenal did what they always do. They thoroughly controlled possession (70%) for the majority of the game, they put up a ghastly number of shots (23) at the goal and nullified any counter-attack by a hapless Sunderland side. Yet, per usual, Arsenal was unable to actually score a goal on Saturday and the double zeroes on the scoreboard meant another terrible draw at Emirates Stadium.
“But hey, at least we got a point. Right?”
Ha, ha, ha. Hilarious.
What truly is hilarious is the post-game reaction from Olivier Giroud, the imported striker from French club Montpelier, who was fed a beautiful pass right on his foot in the waning moments of the contest. Giroud, whose prolific goal-scoring lead to a club title for his side last season, told reporters in his post-game presser that he wants the fans to “be a little patient” with him as he settles into his new role.
“It was a game ball, but the coach told me that I had not to worry about it. This could have been the dream start, but in Montpellier, I did not score for my first game, so I am not worried. Here, I will have plenty of chances and I will score. Last season was wonderful here for Robin, but before that, he took time to settle. I am just asking people to be a little patient with me. I am not here to make people forget Robin, because he has made beautiful things here, but I just want to bring something new. However, I am under no more pressure than that, because if I think about that when I go onto the field, I will play with the handbrake on. I know Arsenal is a great club and needs a striker ready and efficient quickly. I need games to get confidence, and it is up to me to succeed.”
It truly and honestly is a fair thing to ask. Heck, its the first time he’s ever played in a game at this level and he’s being asked to replace last season’s leading scorer in Robin van Persie. I get it. We all get it.
However, he doesn’t get it, and it’s not his fault.
Even Giroud pointed it out to us, “he (Robin) took time to settle.” Which he did. RvP did start off a bit slow, but once he found his rhythm and his role in Wenger’s system, he flourished at the highest of levels. Goal scoring became much more of a certainty versus a big question, it seemed like he did it in his sleep.
Of course, once RvP began sleep-walking into goals, he then started looking past Arsenal to greener pastures. His inking with Manchester United was just another sign of Arsenal serving as a feeder program to the other “big boys” of the league. Another one that truly, got away.
So Giroud, you might be right in asking for patience, but you’re dealing with a group of people that doesn’t want to be patient. Not anymore. Being the feel good story of the league is a tired feeling. You know what feels good? Trophies do. Helping the Gunners win one before you consider bailing might be in the best interest of anyone involved, be it fan or management of you yourself.