Having just had the pleasure of watching Djibril Cisse score the winner against Spurs on his Sunderland debut, I switched over to the Liverpool/Boro game that I had been watching before.
And didn’t Middlesbrough come unlucky right at the end? Having battled all match, closing Liverpool down and playing some very good football, Liverpool came back to grab two late goals from Carragher and Gerrard to steal the match 2-1.
It’s not the last minute style of the win that just irks me – it’s the general cheating culture that has permeated Liverpool that everyone can see but for the Liverpool fans.
Scousers will no doubt cry out in protest, but the Kop are the easiest litmus test here: every foul is decried as some kind of attack on their players, every dive is a stone-wall penalty followed by chants of ‘f— off, ref’, ditto every offside decision…and maybe it was just the Fox Sports’ commentator’s ‘every now and then you need a bit of British’ rubbish spouted as always.
Almost every club does the ref-belittling, every club has its one-eyed supporters…but the Kop have made a religion out of it. And frankly, it’s vile.
Fulham up next, and we could see the return of Alex Song to the centre of midfield – a return of the prodigal son, in a way, after Song’s well known nightmare at the same ground some two years ago. He’s made a lot of strides since then, and I have high hopes for a player that has been treated disgustingly by Arsenal fans and some high-profile bloggers.
Update: Eboue will continue in central midfield, with Song on the bench. Toure will also replace Djourou in central defence.
Having slated Spurs and Liverpool, the football gods will look unfavourably on my scoreline prediction. It’s almost inevitable – but Arsenal should have enough in the tank without Fabregas to overcome Fulham 1-0.
Could we be seeing a scrappy game with a van Persie freekick to win it?
Ultimately, 3 points is all we want.