I heard a disgruntled Hammer bemoaning his attendance at The Emirates on TalkSport earlier. Having attended the game myself, I had some sympathy with his sentiments.
Team selection last night was, to say the least, curious. Substitutions in the second half were even more so.
Why was there no Diame, no Joe Cole, no Jarvis? With no game at the weekend, we surely weren’t resting them? Without them, we offered little threat and even less width. Cole was isolated up top as usual and our midfield was played through in the second half with embarrassing ease. To concede 4 goals in 9 minutes was nothing short of a humiliation.
Nolan and Noble were, for once, out of sorts. Vaz Te was utterly dreadful and, worse, lazy. If he should have been selected in the first place, which he shouldn’t, he absolutely had to be taken off at half time for arguing on the pitch, petulance towards the bench and failing to make any sort of showing whatsoever. It was a disgraceful performance.
Then, to warm applause from the Arsenal faithful, Diame is put on with the score at 5-1! Even odder, Allardyce thinks that at 5-1 at the Emirates it would be a good idea to give young Dan Potts a run out. He wasn’t to know what was about to happen of course but it was a daft thing to do under the circumstances, surely?
So, the tone is set. This season is a reversal of last. Allardyce seems intent on scraping the points required via the home form, expecting little or nothing away. I think we’ll be ok but the heady days of eulogising over a top 8 finish are surely long gone now? (Not that we at C&B ever did).
Best news for a while? Apparently Diame is happy at the club and wants to stay.