Stand up if you love Arsenal

Be prepared for an onslaught of gloom and doom tomorrow if the Arsenal don’t come up trumps with a resounding victory tonight, my fellow Addicts.

The early lessons of this season are that there seem to be a hell of a lot of pessimists who are just waiting to pounce on their keyboards with ‘sack Wenger’ and ‘sell to the highest bidder’ motives.

But personally, I don’t buy it.

Just a week ago we were all smiling triumphantly about the Young Guns demolition job on Sheffield United in the Carling Cup, but a few days later the knives are being drawn, waiting for a slip up in the Champions League to match our disappointing loss to Hull at the weekend.

Anything less than a win tonight and, mark my words, there will be talk of a crisis at Arsenal and numerous trees will die with the newsprint it takes to question whether Arsene still has what it takes.

Don’t get me wrong, a win tonight is important, but right now I’ll settle for 1-0 to the Arsenal. Job done. There are those out there who expect us to bounce back by wiping the floor with Porto, but they are a good team – as were Hull on Saturday – so in a week when the first team is being accused of complacency, I’d have to level the same accusation at a section of the Arsenal faithful.

A win tonight will keep our Champions League campaign on course. A loss would be bad, but would it mean I stop supporting the club? No, of course not.

The old adage rings true: form is temporary, class is permanent. If you need proof of that, just glance at the bottom of the Premier League table to see the plight of Tottenham.

Of course I want to see Arsenal win silverware this season, but I have to admit that if we end up trophyless once again and that results in some of the plastic fans changing allegiance to the Chelskis and Manchester Citys of this world, then I won’t shed too many tears.

Football is a game of ups and downs and you stick by your team through the good times and the bad. If there were only good times, it would be a very boring game indeed.

As for tonight, I predict a 2-0 win for the Gunners, but any scoreline that sees us netting more goals than Porto will do, as long as Le Gaffer’s team can keep playing the kind of football we’ve become so spoiled by at Arsenal over the past 12 years.