By Avenell Dave
I got a strong sense even before Sunday's win over M*nure that Arsenal would win the game, if only because with the pressure off, the players could play their natural game without the 'handbrake' that Arsene Wenger often refers to.
How M*nure would have performed had the timeless excellence of Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs been on the field is anyone's guess, but there was plenty to be cheerful about from an Arsenal point of view.
Woijech Szczesny was outstanding (even if his kicking was a little off in the final few minutes), bringing confidence to the defence and taking charge of situations. Anyone who thinks we need a new keeper while he is fit is simply mad. Why the tabloids keep linking us with Neuer is anyone's guess.
Aaron Ramsey. Forget the goal - memories of Stoke alst season have long been forgotten and the Welsh captain showed the tenacity, bravery and purpose that we need in midfield.
You get the feeling that Ramsey has all the ingredients to be a superb player -and the eye for goal is a bonus.
Some may say that he is the future if cesc Fabregas leaves and that may be true, even though we need some able deputies.
But the abuse I saw Cesc getting for saying that he would be in training on Monday was nothing short of shameful.
Did Wenger leave the Spaniard out because the weight of the captaincy or his recent split from his girlfriend had affected him? Or was it simply that he had indeed been injured on Saturday?
Either way, to start accusing him directly of ducking out of the game or being party to a lie does no one any favours.
Cesc is one of us and I firmly believe that he will be our captain next season. He has fallen away in recent weeks and to a certain degree, given the amount of football he has played in the last 18 months, that is understandable.
Take note Jack Wilshere - we all know you want to play as often as you can, but just look at how much it can affect you even before you reach 25!
Jack had another fine game and we have to hope he gets some shooting practice in during the summer months (while not taking part in EVERY tournament he has been slated for).
Of course there were aspects to be concerned about - we were lucky once more not to concede what would have been our fourth penalty in as many matches, even though the game may have changed irrevocably if Vidic had been sent off for the handball as RvP stole in.
We still lack a clinical goalscorer with pace and I hope Wenger brings one in during the summer so that RvP can drop back to his more natural Bergkamp-esque position.
Even at his age, the Addicts i spoke to yesterday said that Didier Drogba would be a superb signing for a couple of seasons.
But the fact remains that while the squad needs probably half a dozen new faces and as many departures in the summer (which won't happen), the main ingredients are there.
Doing it week in, week out, rising to challenges rather than fading meekly in the face of adversity, is the main element we need to develop and I don't know how you go about that.
Those who want to demonstrate at the Villa game would do better to get behind the team and do any complaining at the AST meeting in June, where their voices can be heard and concerns can be discussed in a civilised manner. The risk of gatecrashers causing trouble at a march will remain.
We are the Arsenal. Be proud.
As a post-script, Addict has been sent a couple of photos of the new kit - which many on the blogsphere have spoken about over recent weeks.
I like it - and I hope that our 125th season is a momentous one.