Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Five Years Have Past;

...five summers, with the length
Of five long winters! and again I hear...
One of Wordsworth's finest comes to mind this morning, as it is just about that length of days since that most famous of Arshavin goals put Messi and co. to the sword at the Emirates.  And we were there to see it.  That game, and the memorable celebrations in the aftermath at the Gunners pub, surely one of the early reasons why I have grown so attached to this football club over the years since.  After the surprising win at Olympiakos in December, it felt inevitable that Barca would be drawn again, and when they were there was nothing to be done but ensure that I would make my way back over and inside the stadium for it once again.

It is the hope that inspires and the hope that kills.  Back in February '11, the match preview from Goonerholic called it the game the planet wants to watch, and the 'holic pound was wagered on a straight Arsenal win at 3/1.  This year the bet is the same, although the odds on the win are up to 4/1.  That sounds about right.  A difficult and mountainous task, but... whisper it... "it's not impossible." 

As I head out for the always enjoyable pre-match rituals, there are a host of things on my mind, but one in particular paramount above the others.  Here's hoping for some moments that will live as long in the memory as the last time we welcomed the best team in the world to North London.  You really cannot ask for anything more in the world than that.  It is truly special when you can honestly say that there is no other place in the world you would rather be at a specific point in time than exactly where you are.  That's when you know you are living your life right, as a friend once famously remarked over St. Patrick's Day pints of Guinness in Dublin.

C'mon you rip-roaring Gunners.  Let's do this.


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