Football can be such a cruel game sometimes.
There was I telling the world, in my match preview, that the best we could hope for would be a draw when in reality I should be sat here discussing the joy of winning.
But like I said, football can be such a cruel game!
Prior it this game, we`d never won, away at Arsenal, in twenty-five attempts, but yesterday (Saturday) we came within 11 minutes of doing just that.
A superbly marshalled defence, some astute tactics allied with a slice of luck had kept the game all square at 0-0.
Then, just when you were praying that we could hold out, midway through the second half we took the lead.
Having a great game, Murphy chipped the ball into the danger area, the ball bounced off of Riise, hit the unfortunate Vermaelen and trickled past the stranded Arsenal keeper, Szczesny.
Suddenly we weren`t looking at a draw we were looking at that elusive first win.
But, just as you started to get those hopes up, along comes a disaster.
With Arsenal pushing forward, their villain became a hero. Eight minutes were left on the clock when Vermaelen met a cross from Walcott and headed home past Mark Schwarzer.
It was a cruel ending to a game that many will remember for a long time.
We`d gone to Arsenal fearful of their Dutch scoring sensation, Robin van Persie, but we`d tamed him.
Only once did he get a sniff and on that occasion Chris Baird was on hand to clear off the line.
Was Saturday evening the moment Jol`s team matured? We can only hope so!
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