Arsenal may have gotten another new admirer in Michael Owen, who has often been hesitant to admit Arsenal’s top four credentials during his spell as a football commentator because of the new air of a resurgent Arsenal, blowing all over London and England entirely. Owen was full of praise and kind words for the Gunners as they thrashed Manchester City, the Premier League winners of last season 3-0 in the FA Community Shield game at Wembley on Sunday. While commentating for BT Sport during the match, the former Manchester United and Liverpool attacker, on Alexis Sanchez, said: ‘‘They have finally got some pace in their team. He certainly looks like the signing of the summer.’’ Later on tweeter, Owen went on to give his opinion on what is required for this current Arsenal crop to make a strong impression, he said: ‘‘Another defender and a sitting midfielder and Arsenal could be in business. City just need their stars back’’. He also tweeted: ‘‘Enjoyed today. Arsenal fans have got every right to be excited for the new season. Wouldn’t be at all worried if I were a City fan’’. – Michael Owen (@themichaelowen).
The 2014 FA Community Shield game between Arsenal and Manchester City on Sunday, saw a confident and impressive Arsenal side, without Ozil, Mertersacker, Podolski and Walcott; thrash a clueless Manchester City side, which had Nasri, Toure, Navas and new signing, Fernando . The match, which ended in a 3-0 victory for the Gunners, saw Santi Cazorla, Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud hitting the back of the net in both halves. The super strike from Olivier Giroud in the second half of the game obviously stole the show as he was handed the Man of the Match Award on a sunny Sunday afternoon at Wembley. The confidence boosting victory for Arsenal has done enough in the past few days as former players and top pundits have taken time to praise Arsenal’s impressive display on the day.
Arsenal had over the years been the subject of jeers, banters, abuses and criticism for their lack of trophies and silverware in close to a decade which had the team celebrate mediocre achievement like a 4th place finish. A popular perennial under achiever and a subject of public ridicule in England and Europe, Arsenal struggled through stringent finances and fought for relevance in those years, where top players of the club were sold to have some financial leverage. It may be too early for a review of the 9-year trophy drought, but a reminder of how pundits and football observers perceived Arsenal as a failure of a team is necessary to understand how money and success changes situations. If kind words can be extended to Arsenal ever in this life, one would never think of them coming from a Michael Owen, who was always a rival from his playing days till now. It only says one thing, the dirty image that the Gunners had amassed, is about to be, and almost totally laundered.
Michael Owen has now joined Usmanov, a 30% shareholder at Arsenal and Cafu, a former Brazilian World Cup winning Captain, in saying good things concerning the affairs of the club, on and off the pitch.