Arsenal 1-0 Everton: Van Persie creates new memories
Monday, 12th Dec 2011 19:16
Statue finding, brass band listening and hero applauding gave Arsenal fans an unusual and nostalgic pre match build up but there was a fear that the distractions and intimidation factor of a host of club legends applauding the team out could hinder a squad who are just beginning to find their own identity.
This may have been a justified fear as we never left third gear during the entire 90 minutes but we made enough chances in the first half to secure the three points against an unadventurous Everton side. Walcott, Gervinho and Ramsey all spurned good openings as our star finisher was struggling to get involved.
Our lack of full backs appeared to affect our ability to dominate the game as neither Djourou or Vermaelen were entirely comfortable in possession in the opposing half although the latter’s defensive ability was invaluable on a couple of occasions where Andre Santos or Kieran Gibbs may not have been able to clear ahead of the dangerous Tim Cahill.
The second half saw Louis Saha replaced by Sylvain Distin as David Moyes clearly indicated his intent. We struggled to carve open the opposing defence as they dropped deeper and it was left to the captain to produce the goal and the familiar score line that our 125thanniversary deserved. In the 70th minute with the crowd beginning to resign themselves to 2 more dropped points at home Alex Song drove forward and clipped a perfectly weighted through ball into the path of Robin van Persie who had timed his run expertly, learning from a handful of occasions in the first half where he had been caught out by the Everton offside trap. The inform striker ran onto the ball and without breaking strike, arrowed the ball into the far corner with a venomous volley. He connected with the ball with both feet in the air and the ball curled perfectly into the corner, firing off the post into the back of the net. It was the best goal of his season so far and cemented his position as the best striker in the world. A brilliant way to cap a great day at the Arsenal and enough to secure the three points despite a late effort from Everton which just evaded Szczesny’s far post.
Now we have a week to re-focus before an immense test in Manchester.
Photo: Action Images
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