By Avenell Dave
Well I can’t say I’m delighted last night’s result – who would be?
But at the same time, I suspect it may be seen as a point gained at the season’s end.
Whether that’s enough for us in the title mix, time will tell, but evening matches against northern sides under floodlights have always been banana skins for us.
We should have been home and clear by the time referee Mike Dean awarded a soft penalty for Thomas Vermaelen’s challenge on Andre Bikey.
Losing Cesc Fabregas with a hamstring injury was an obvious turning point and showed how much we rely on his vision and invention, especially away from home.
Aaron Ramsey and Abou Diaby just don’t quite offer enough and Samir Nasri, although busy, needs to get a few more shots in on goal than he has done since his return from injury.
On the subject of shooting, I’d like Le Boss to urge Alex Song to have a shot a bit more often.
He’s a tricky player and often gets himself in shooting positions on the edge of the box but always elects to pass – even if he shoots over occasionally, the openings he makes should reap bigger rewards.
Yet again Theo Walcott failed to show why he is so revered – and I’m beginning to agree with my fellow Addict Graham McNorthbank that he’s just not good enough.
A home game against Hull will give him another chance to show what he can do but you can’t dine out on an England hat-trick forever.
Is it his lack of football pedigree? Being rusty after injury or just a lack of ability? Whatever the reasons, I’m not sure the formation helps him much – it’s too much for him to work out.
One chance presented to Theo which he skied over the bar said it all and hopefully Arséne Wenger realised he needs some more firepower or creativity.
A tall striker is a must but even a playmaker such as Rafael van der Vaart might have picked his way through the dogged opposition defence.
At the other end, Manuel Almunia again showed what a clown he is and how crazy Wenger’s words of support really are.
Time and again when the ball came across, defenders looked to head it rather than let their keeper come for it.
And one back pass almost put us in trouble as well as panic set in.
But the worst example was a cross which somehow Almunia allowed to drift underneath him before Burnley put the ball in the net. Thank God for offside flags.
Pundits will say that this proves our lack of credentials in the title race but I disagree.
M*nure lost at Turf Moor in the summer, remember and to be fair to Owen Coyle’s side, they were disciplined and played decent football which will win them a fair amount of home games.
Will be interesting to see how bad Cesc's injury is, but it's vital we get three points on Saturday to keep things interesting before the big one against Villa.