Martin O'Neill Gutted
Luckless Villa v Arsenal Whingers?
Arsenal, on their day, are a sight to behold, they stroke the ball about like nobody's business, they have skill and athleticism to burn, so why why why do they have to resort to time wasting, diving and faking injuries? This is not what any of us want to see in the British leagues and the quicker it is stamped out the better.
Martin O'Neill said after the game, a match in which despite losing 1-0 it is difficult to fault any Villa player as they truly did give all they had and did us proud tonight:
'Arsenal should have played the last 70 minutes with ten men.'
Adding: 'We lacked a little bit of luck and I hate to use that word. But they scored a lucky goal and I'm told there was a suspicion of offside. At the other end John Carew looks like he's just going to score - he's at least going to have a shot on goal - and he's brought down. It was very, very close to being a penalty, but I'll accept that it was just outside. What I don't accept is the fact that the player stayed on. He should have gone.'
'I know the referee would argue that Gallas was making an attempt to get across, but he was not going to get remotely close to him. So that was a goalscoring opportunity and he should have gone. You never know though, maybe we'll get a bit of luck on Sunday and things will work in our favour. It's bitterly disappointing to have lost that game and I felt we deserved at least a point for the way we piled on the pressure in the second-half.'
'I can't really fault the performance and I'm absolutely distraught we haven't taken anything from the game. Overall I was very pleased with the way we played and with just a little bit of luck, we would have taken something from the game.'
Luck, one of these days ours will turn. We deserved something out of that game tonight but at least the players and fans can walk away with pride. The Arsenal on the other hand walk away with 3 points but as usual lacked sportsmanship and dignity.
Mark Atkinson if you are a Premiership standard referee then I'm Brad Pitts body double in Fight Club.