12 February 2016

Putting Leicester on lock-down: how can Arsenal fetter these fleet Foxes?

When the fixture-list first came out to start the season, we all looked ahead to this late-season match, one that could very well decide the winner of the Prem. Coming so late in the season, and between two such presumptive favorites, this clash shone like a beacon over all preceding weeks as well as the precious few that would follow: City. The boys in blue. The Foxes. Those—hold the phone. If anyone had suggested that it would Leicester to whom we would refer as City, and it would be this matchday and not #37 that might decide who wins the Prem, they'd've been carted off. And yet here we are.

11 February 2016

Arsenal have Leicester right where they want 'em...

After positively thrashing Man City at the Etihad last weekend, Leicester lept from impossible underdogs to presumptive favorites, and why not? Not only was the quality of their win off the charts (only a late Agüero goal spoiled a clean sheet for the visitors), it stretched Leicester's undefeated stretch in the Prem to seven, a stretch during which they'd conceded just three goals. The only blemish of late, an 0-2 loss to Tottenham in the FA Cup's third round, might in fact burnish the Foxes' Prem credentials—they now have only the Prem to focus on. Five points clear of the pack and just thirteen matches to play? Yeah, I'd say they've got an inside track. They're now favorites. Perfect.

10 February 2016

One *cataclysmic* weekend coming up in the Prem...

There are just 13 matchdays left, and the fox with an inside track has far-fewer distractions than the hounds chasing it. Leicester—henceforth known simply as "City"—hold a five-point lead over its more-pedigreed pursuers, each of whom has League Cup, FA Cup, and European commitments to distract and degrade their ambitions. It's one of the craziest Prem seasons in living memory, and the top four are separated by just six points. With each passing week, City lay waste to persistent doubts about their legitimacy. With each passing week, the gap between the top four and those chasing them widens. Madness. Let's get to it...

07 February 2016

Ramsey's Barcelona trial fills with hot air after bossing Bournemouth...

After a series of dispiriting performances saw Arsenal slip from first to fourth, knives were being sharpened and expectations deadened. Four straight setbacks had journos penning post-mortems on Arsenal's title-tilt, on Arsène's tenure, on the squad itself. Against this backdrop, it makes all too much sense for other clubs to come sniffing around, kicking the tires and finding a deal along the lines of van Persie to Man U or Fàbregas to Barcelona. Speaking of Barcelona and of central midfielders, Sunday saw a resurgence of another coveted but mercurial midfielder: Aaron Ramsey. His performance against Bournemouth did just enough to tantalize us about what's possible. Will Barcelona beckon? That will have to 'til the summer. Between then and now, there are trophies to be won.

Bournemouth 0-2 Arsenal: Vote for Player Ratings and MotM!

First-half goals from Mesut Özil and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (his first in 16 months) powered
Arsenal to an early lead that they would never relinquish. Even if the 88 seconds between the two might have augured even more scoring, the result is good enough to close the gap on the increasingly impressive Foxes, who thrashed Man City at the Etihad. Bournemouth did have a few too many chances to call this a convincing result, but after four straight setbacks, a positive result is important enough not to look askance at. We've overtaken Man City, gone level with Tottenham, and closed the gap with Leicester to five. At the end of the day, that'll have to be good enough. We have a dramatic chance to close that gap next weekend. For now, though, get down to the poll to rate the lads!