All we need now is the huddle to cap Arsenal's resurgence


Being a bit of a pessimist, I'm still yet to be convinced that we've got what it takes to win consistently and overtake Scouserpool (who will fall away) and Ch*vski and M*nure to win the title.

But, while the development of our young squad continues, the most important two elements seem to be making a comeback.

We can't do anything about injuries, dodgy refereeing decisions or world class finishes by opponents (Geovanni's goal for Hull, for instance).

But as long as we're grinding out results as we did on Sunday, confidence will start to flow back to the squad and we'll play the sort of sexy football that relies on that confidence in order to win matches.

But there's something else that the Arsenal team require, and it's something that has been missed lately.

The players have stopped having their regular pre-game huddles, embracing each other and showing that they will fight for each other in quite as pronounced a way as they did last season and before.

Maybe those who whispered that the team spirit wasn't quite as strong as it used to be had a point.

I've worked closely with football clubs in the past and one thing is certain: if there are too many cliques, too many players who don't get on, it spills into their play. One particular team I followed as a local reporter actually got relegated.

Players are not all as chummy as we may suspect, and like every workplace, people have those they get on with better than others. But the stronger the bonds, the better the chances of team success. It may sound obvious, but with Premiership millionaires, it's a tricky conundrum for a coach to control.

One of the problems, which may or may not be integral, is the relationship between Nic Bendtner and Manu Adebayor.

We all know about their spat at Sh*te H*rt L*ne last season and, while I don't think Ade is an angel, I suspect it had more to do with Bendtner's attitude.

He has not been one to clap the fans, or wait around after matches and generally seems quite a loner who wants to be on his own despite playing a team sport.

Remember when Ade didn't pass to Bendtner to seal the game against Birmingham last season? Maybe that was the beginning of the end of our season in more ways than one.

So when I saw Bendtner and Adebayor exchanging passes in one attack yesterday, it filled me with glee. The hatchet seems to have been well and truly buried.

Not only that, but Bendtner ran over to his strike partner and helped haul him up after the Togolese forward's shot had gone abegging. He could easily have left Adebayor to pick himself up, but that he ran over to him speaks volumes of the progress in their relationship.

Time will tell if the rift has well and truly been healed, but the more the team gets on, the better chance we have of winning something this season.