According to The Daily Mail, talks over a new loan deal for Henry are going well and a ‘debut’ for the old boy is pencilled in for January 6th when we face Swansea in the FA Cup. Doesn’t really take a genius to work out that that is our first game after the transfer window opens and the first one he’ll be available for does it? IF he joins us again of course.
Talking of which, there is another article in the same paper which is quite good, it really knocks the lazy Match of The Day pundits. It’s worth a read.
Today’s post about the League Cup.
I have very fond memories of league cup encounters from years ago, when it was still regarded as a competition worth winning. It’s always been the poor relation in terms of domestic trophies but it still got people excited when we had a sniff of winning it. I still smile when I think of Perry Groves dancing down the left wing and Charlie Nicholas trying to miss but still scoring to beat Liverpool to it. It was a huge deal then. Likewise when we did the unprecedented cup double. I went just as bananas with us winning the league cup as I did winning the FA cup a few months later.
Of course, the evolution of domestic and European competition has seen its status downgraded to the point that even small clubs are likely to field weak teams to rest their better players for more important league games. It doesn’t help that winning the competition only gains the victors entry into the Europa league which is another sad evolution in the domestic calendar. But that’s a different subject.
However, I feel the league cup is still a pot worth the effort. That victory against Liverpool in 1987 came in George Graham’s first season in charge. Given our woeful form before he took over it was the perfect platform from which to build up not only the teams confidence but also the hunger for more success.
Jose Mourinho did the exact same thing at Chelsea. After winning that league cup they went on win everything albeit not exclusively under the arrogant one. But it stayed with the squad.
That leads me to this question. If Arsenal were to win this seasons league cup would it have the same effect?
Given the manager’s tendency to use the competition as a platform for up and coming youngsters with a smattering of experience thrown in for good measure, just what would the benefit be in terms of pushing on?
Yes, the club would have won its first trophy in 7 years, shaking the monkey from off it’s back, but on the face of it it would only be good for the confidence of the young ones.
What would our first team players get from it? Reflected glory?
Would they feel the pressure to win a trophy lifted from their collective shoulders?
Personally, I doubt it. If I was one of them it would make me feel under even more pressure to do the same.
So what’s the answer?
Do we carry on with the competition priorities as they are or should we go for it first team style in the league cup and see if we can’t just get a little taste of success and the momentum that might accompany it?
What do you all think?
Written by Bendtnersgone.