The Premier League returned this weekend and with it, a healthy dose of Arsenal-induced heart attacks.
In the end, it could be argued that Arsenal won a game they probably wouldn’t have last season and did so with a huge slice of luck. But that’s life, or, rather, football, and it’s nice to be on the right end of that sort of circumstance.
So what did we learn?
Some of the press are frothing to label Lucas a flop
Lucas didn’t enjoy the most lively of debuts, but given he’s playing in a new country in a new league and with a team of players, many of which he only met a day or two ago due to international duty, who weren’t playing that well either, he hardly warrants singling out.
The only #Arsenal fan happy with Lucas Perez's debut will be Olivier Giroud.
— Matt Hughes (@MattHughesTimes) September 10, 2016
This might seem like an innocuous tweet, but it’s not. It’s from a Times journalist and it lays a foundation on which they will gleeful build should he not rock the world in his next game.
They did the same with Giroud and look how he is treated four years after his debut.
Bobby Madley is an awful referee
Yes, he might have given us the penalty that won the game, and for that we will be eternally grateful, but how much did he miss?
For a start, there was the foul on Shane Long in the build up. Then there was leaving Laurent Kocielny lying on the floor for an age while he clearly had a head injury. There was the constant niggly fouls and incredibly lightweight Saints players falling to the pitch at any given opportunity.
All a yellow card for timewasting tells a keeper is that he's now free to timewaste as much as he wants for the rest of the game
— Lee Hurley (@HLeeHurley) September 10, 2016
Koscielny gets the best and worst birthday presents
A goal that any world class striker would be living off for years (Rooney’s against Manchester City was a total scuff and he’s undroppable because of it) and a kick in the face.
His face will heal. And the goal videos will remain. Overall that’s a positive return for the birthday boy.
Santi is a small man but a massive player
We didn’t learn this on Saturday, but it needed mentioned again. An absolutely epic performance from the little magician and the nerve he showed after the long wait before his penalty was what we’ve been crying out for from the spot for a long time.
Mesut Ozil is human
If you had to rate Mesut Ozil’s performance against Southampton out of 10, you’d probably give him the lowest rating he’s ever had in an Arsenal shirt. It was an afternoon to forget for the German. Luckily, he’s awesome so often, it will be quickly forgotten – by Arsenal fans at least, if not the media.