How Does It Feel, Arsenal?
The Premier League table has a very pleasing and attractive look about it at the moment, for lots of reasons. But one the most enjoyable aspects of it, for me, is to see Arsenal sitting comfortably in sixth place with nowhere to go. You know; that place we occupied for season after season when we were not quite up with the best but a long way in front of the rest. We seemed to be in a league of our own; a league with just one team in it and it was a lonely place to be.
There are 11 more games before this season’s exploits are completed. Tottenham are seven points ahead of Arsenal and enjoy a superior Goal Difference. The remaining games that both teams face suggest that this situation is unlikely to change when the final whistle blows to end the season.
How times have changed. We have just completed a master-class performance against our neighbours which was by no means reflected in the 1-0 score-line. ‘For everything there is a season’ has never been truer. Last season Arsenal were below us. This season Arsenal are below us again. The power shift in North London is no longer something to be dreamed of. It is now a very distinct possibility. Of course we need to sustain our position ahead of the neighbours in the coming seasons for it to become accepted across the broader football community but, from where we now stand, this is no longer the unlikely dream it was for such a long time.
Until last season, many younger fans have never enjoyed the experience of finishing above Arsenal in the league, and have had to suffer the jibes aimed at them by ‘Red’ North Londoners. For years Arsenal took us for granted and, given the comparative performances of both teams, it’s not difficult to understand why. No matter how those years progressed there was always a cloud hanging over the Lane because of it. But now the sun has come out and the cloud has shifted down the road a bit!
Given the long history of our bitter rivalry with Arsenal, finishing above them, whatever else happens for the rest of this season, can be viewed as a successful outcome on one level at least. It could now be our turn to enjoy life the sun. How does it feel, Arsenal?!