Thursday, November 26, 2009

Bergkamp wants to coach

"I would like to train and work in England. Not only as head coach, but as a member of the staff, so I can work with the strikers."

- Dennis Bergkamp, dead-set legend and wannabe coach

Dennis Bergkamp wants to come back to England and coach. He completed his coaching qualifications in 2008. He was trained in the Ajax system. He has perfect technique and vision. He is a thorough professional.

Any takers? 

I'm wondering how many great players become great coaches. I know there are very few great players who become great managers, but what's the strike-rate of great coaches? Off the top of my head, I can think of Martin Keown coming back to coach the Arsenal back-line to great success. Pat Rice has been at the club since forever, so he must be good. I remember from CM03-04 that Juventus has a couple of great coaches who were once great ex-players. But who else? 

The hardest thing with a great player becoming a great coach must be the difficulty in conveying instinct to other people. As a player, Bergkamp would pass and move and shoot instinctively. He wouldn't have known why he did certain things until after he did them. Those awesome passes and goals just came naturally to him. 

I can imagine him on his first day at London Colney, with an impressionable Theo Walcott and Carlos Vela in front of him: 

"Now, when Fabregas hits a 60 yard ball at you from the halfway line, what you should do is control it with your ankle, then shimmy past the opposing full-back, then pause for a split-second to weigh up your options, and then score the goal by kicking it off the side of your right boot," Bergkamp says. 

"Sorry Mr Bergkamp, but are you saying that you control a 60 yard pass with your ankle?" Theo asks.

"Yes, I don't believe in show-boating. Just trap it neatly first-time, don't expose the ball to the opponent," Bergkamp replies. "Now, when you're playing as the focal point of the 4-3-3, a common mistake is to only see moves two steps ahead of play. It's important to think three or four moves ahead, or otherwise you can't surprise your opponent." 

"You want us to make passes that no one else can see?" Carlos Vela asks. 

"Of course. Why else would you make them?" Bergkamp asks, perplexed.

Still, I think we should hire Bergkamp if we can. If anyone can make the leap from playing to coaching, Bergkamp can. It's a simple formula: Awesome player + awesome man = awesome coach. 

You can't argue with maths. 

Monday, November 23, 2009

An update on Placenta-gate

In an update to Placenta-gate, it turns out that Mariana Kovacevic, the physiotherapist who's injecting bits of horse placenta into van Persie's ankle, is on the run from Serbian police and is wanted for tax-evasion. 

She has at least three aliases and as many as four different addresses in Belgrade. She constantly changes her style of dressing and her hair colour to avoid detection. If anyone sees her, they should be warned that she's armed, dangerous and liable to inject you with a syringe full of horse placenta if you confront her.  

As the Daily Mail reports:

"In a case which is developing the sinister trappings of an underworld operation, Kovacoevic has disappeared without a trace. The players she is currently treating are also being kept hidden form view by a bewildering combination of subterfuge, private jets, fast cars and eagle-eyed surveillance."

Kovacevic is currently treating Robin van Persie, Glen Johnson, Fabio Aurelio and Frank Lampard. It's really quite exciting to imagine her stashing those players in various safe-houses across the city. I've been to Belgrade, and the city's a collection of Stalinist shtick with a Blade-runner sensibility. It's the perfection environment to imagine Spy-vs-Spy escapades involving highly-paid footballers, shady placenta-injecting physiotherapists and the Serbian police. 

I can just see van Persie and Lampard holed up in a battered shanty on the banks of the Sava River. Police have surrounded the house and are approaching with guns drawn. Suddenly, there's the sound of thunder, and a vintage 1950s Aston Martin bursts through the flimsy wooden wall. Lampard's in the driver's seat and he's gunning it, while van Persie's standing on the back seat firing an Uzi at the police, who cower under their cars as they become riddled with bullets. 

I just hope van Persie takes care as they're speeding off in the Aston Martin with a clutch of police cars in hot pursuit. And when Lampard crashes into a fire hydrant and van Persie's thrown into a shop window from to the impact, I hope he avoids hitting anything too hard. And when van Persie's running over the roof-tops of Belgrade with the portly police commissioner in hot pursuit, I hope he remembers to look down and not twist his other ankle. 

The last thing we need is for him to be out for another couple of months. 

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunderland 1-0 Arsenal

"We can only fault ourselves. Some players were not at their best and we gave a goal away at a set piece that provided Sunderland's only opportunity to score. That sums it up perfectly; the game was there for the taking."

- Arsene Wenger, refreshingly frank about the match

Okay,  Eduardo as a lone striker isn't the answer. I think it was worthwhile to give him a chance in the position, but we've to go regard it as a failure. Eduardo a poacher and he'll give you a few dinky little passes, but he needs someone to play off of. He doesn't have the qualities to be the main man himself. 

Then again, thinking back over the last few years, and I'm wondering what is the answer to yesterday's performance. We played poorly against Sunderland, and we lost. We conceded a weak goal on a set piece and we lost. We lost key players in the previous international week and we lost. As much as we'd like to deny it, Arsenal lose matches in circumstances like this, and there's not a lot to say about it. It's just a fact of life. 

I think we can say that thing will be difficult until Bendtner comes back next month. Bendtner can play as a lone striker. van Persie can play as a lone striker. I'm not sure about the rest of the strikers. I think we're going to keep rotating strikers for the next few games, hoping that one of the combinations click. 

So what's going to happen next week against Chelsea? Who are we going to plonk up front against Terry and Carvalho? I'm thinking Wenger will stick with Eduardo. However, I hope he decides to gives Vela a chance up front. Vela has amazing potential, and it'll be nice to see him get a few starts. He's fast and clever, and he can lead the line better than Eduardo. 

Actually, I'd like to see Walcott start on the right wing, Arshavin on the left and Vela up front. It would be like playing three Mighty Mouses together. Terry and Carvalho would be like ponderous elephants trying to stamp on tiny, speedy rodents, and our attacking trio would be biting them, and slipping past them, and stealing all their cheese. And then the elephants would get so upset at their stolen cheese that they'll refuse to eat leaves and then they'll get hungry, and malnourished, and then they'll die. That's what I want to happen to Terry and Carvalho next week (except the dying part, because that's a bit extreme). 

The other thing that bugs me about the Sunderland game was the soft goal. Until we get serious with defending set pieces, we're going to continue to conceded weak goals. It might not matter when we're scoring 3 goals a game, but last night showed us that we're not going to score 3 goals a game every match. This lax defending is going to cost us the points that will cost us the title. And until we do something about it, we can forget about winning the title. 

Friday, November 20, 2009

Hand of Henry

I've been very colour co-ordinated today. Currently, I'm wearing brown cord pants, brown tan shoes and a coffee brown T-shirt. The remarkable thing is that I dress in the dark, so most days I don't know what I've got on until I step out of my bedroom and into the light of the hallway. The fact that I managed to put on clothes of all the same hue today is a remarkable coincidence, and one that I'm not going to question. 

When things go well like that, it's best not to look too carefully into it. 

You could say the same thing about Henry's handball and France's qualification to the World Cup final. Understandably, Ireland are distraught. It was a remarkable bit of cheating. Ireland have even demanded that the match be replayed. France, on the other hand, have a guilty little smirk on their face and are busy trying not to look at the video replay. C'est la vie, and all that. 

The revelation that Henry is a cheat is supposed to pose something of a moral dilemma for Arsenal fans. Can we still love Henry now that we know he's just another dirty foreign cheater who steals World Cup places from hard-working, plucky, salt-of-the-earth teams from the British Isles? After reading a variety of blogs about this issue,  the common consensus seems to be: 

1) Henry's still a legend and one handball doesn't change his status
2) Henry was wrong, and Arsenal fans don't condone cheating
3) Ireland can't complain because all footballers cheat
4) Ireland had chances to finish off the tie, so they can't complain 
5) Isn't Robbie Keane a total cunt?

There's nothing wrong with these points. However, I think the more pertinent question is why do we think Henry should be faultless? Aside from his footballing skills, Henry is a man like any other. He wants to compete in one last World Cup, and is desperate to go to South Africa. So when the opportunity came along, he handballed to win. It's not an attractive quality, but it's a perfectly human quality. 

The thing is that these things happen. Footballers cheat. Referees miss handballs. Wrongdoers can succeed. Unless someone does something sensible about it, like introduce video replays, there's not a lot you can say about it. Footballers are going to handball balls into the net if they think they're going to get away with it. It's unfortunate that Henry did it to Ireland in a very important game, but it's a bit like me pulling out clothes at random and ending up with a colour co-ordinated outfit. 

It was just dumb luck. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

van Persie and his witch doctor

"I will meet with the female doctor who helped Danko Lzaovic. She is vague about her methods, but I know she massages you using fluid from a placenta. I am going to try. It cannot hurt and if it helps, it helps."

- Robin van Persie, seeking state-of-the-art medical treatment

You never know, it's unusual treatment but it might work.

Civilisations from ages past have all reported favourably on the great medicinal benefit of slaughtering livestock and then rubbing bloody bits of it over your body. However, the chicken gizzards on my temple floor told me the other day that van Persie's doctor should also burn a fatten calf as an offering to Baal, say three Hail Mary's and then dip van Persie in the River Styx to make him invulnerable.

But I'm pessimistic about his chances with this doctor. Personally, I don't trust someone who's "vague" about their methods. And I can't see how a topical agent is going to be effective to treat ligament injury. I'd suggest that if they're using that placenta for the stem cells, he's better off injecting that thing straight into the ankle. It might turn van Persie into a half-cow freak of nature, but that might be an improvement - I've never seen a cow get leg injuries during international matches. 

Anyway, van Persie's out for at least six weeks. Nothing we can do about it now. Instead, we've got to figure out who'll baby-sit the pointy end of our 4-3-3 until he comes back. Bendtner's the obvious choice, but he's out for a month. Walcott's out for about the same time. Eduardo's a bit small, he's out of form and he's more of a poacher than a central striker. Playing him in a 4-3-3 is like playing an old Michael Owen as a lone-striker - it's just wrong. 

The thing is, do we need a striker? 

We were going fairly well before van Persie hit his stride, so I'm wondering if the loss of van Persie will mean much to our goals output. As long as we get someone who has his range of passing, we'll be okay. Actually, we could do worse than adopt Roma's 4-2-3-1-0, with Arshavin as the Totti-esque supporting striker. They play a fluid, graceful style of football, with wonderful little triangles and with very little end-product. Until Bendtner comes back, that's what I have my money on. 

Let's just hope we don't play Diaby in that role.

Monday, November 16, 2009

History repeating

"You're still going to do it, aren't you? It's the funniest thing - even after talking about it tonight, you're going to go ahead and do it anyway. You don't learn. You know it's a bad idea, but you're still going to go after her."

- my friend, a couple of hours ago. 

It's not a good idea to go after a friend's hot sister.
I know it's wrong to go after her. It's very, very wrong, and there are so many potential pitfalls that my head reels. Intellectually, I can grasp that it's a bad idea. Emotionally, I can understand it. Even viscerally, I get a bit queasy as I think about her, and I realise she's not for me. I've been down this path before, and I have no desire to go back down it, but then again... 

There must be a special sub-section of Hades reserved for people like us. Sisyphus rolls his boulder up the hill all eternity. Tantalus bends over for a drink from the pool, just to watch it disappear from his grasp. I keep chasing girls I really shouldn't be after. And Arsene Wenger cobbles together a potentially championship-winning side, only to watch it crumble through injuries.

It's all so clear when you're on the outside looking in. Take the Arsenal and our current run of injuries to our strikers. Before the weekend, Bendtner and Walcott were out, Vela wasn't not match-fit and Eduardo's in rather sketchy form. We were doing okay with that. But now that van Persie's out until Christmas, we're left with just one fit, poorly-performing striker for at least a month.  

The tragedy is that it was pretty obvious this could've happened. 

We sold Adebayor for £25 million and didn't feel the need to replace him. Instead, we relied on van Persie being fit for a full season. van Persie has had one injury-free season in all his time at Arsenal. Odds are that he wasn't going to last the season. They say he's out for six weeks, but you know with van Persie that those six weeks can easily stretch to three months.

Why did we do that? Why did we put our faith in van Persie's dodgy hamstrings and frail ankles? With that £25 million, we could've bought an Aguero or a Benzema or even a David Villa. We could've got a striker of van Persie's quality, but without van Persie's injuries. But we didn't.

It's happened before, and we're all a bit bemused by it. Losing Vieira, we dallied around and never bought the DM we needed. Losing Lehmann, we prevaricated and never got the great 'keeper we required to win the tight games. Losing David Dein, it took us three years before we got our act together and hired Ivan Gazidis. 

I think Wenger has this idea that we can keep recruiting from within: Diaby can replace Vieira; Song can replace Gilberto; Walcott can replace Henry; Bendtner can replace Adebayor; and so forth indefinitely, like a Fibonacci sequence that keeps on expanding. It works to a degree, but it doesn't. We drop too many points and lose too many games to ever be good enough to win the league this way. 

The problem is that we never learn. We like to think that we're creatures of logic, but really, we're still governed by chemicals and tiny, hard-wired electrical signals that don't give a fuck about things like logic and rationality and good common sense. Wenger might go into a transfer period resolved to make a clean sweep and buy the players we need, but the minute he steps out on the training pitch he sees his proteges, his heart surges with pride, and he wants to give them one more chance. 

Hope springs eternal. This time might be different. You never know unless you try. There's always one more season to gain experience, and one more unsuitable girl to chase. And after all, she is very attractive. 

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Cesc Sera, Sera

"I don't know what will happen either tomorrow or in a year or in five years."

- Cesc Fabregas, philosophising about stuff

In a sense, Cesc is right - you never know what's going to happen tomorrow. Life is such an unlikely event that even waking up in the morning should be considered a minor miracle. We exist because oxygen is soluble in blood and binds to haemoglobin, because our hearts beat in a constant rhythm from the day we're born, and because we can somehow derive consciousness from the connections between millions of fatty sheathed neurones in our heads. We take it for granted, but when you think about it, you realise how unlikely the whole set it is. And when you think about that, the idea that you can plan for something to occur in a week, or a year or five years seems absurd. 

Then again, some things are immutable. van Persie getting injured during an international match is something that's as constant as the sun, taxes and that queasy bellyache you get after eating too much KFC. van Persie injured his ankle in a match against Italy, and he's going to be out of for a few months. It's a shame, because he'd just adapted to the lone-striker role at Arsenal. 

But most things in life are ever-changing. Take the Arsenal - our season's in a state of flux at the moment. If we can improve the defence and compensate for van Persie's injury, we've a great chance of winning the league. If the kids improve, we'll have enormous depth on the bench. If we strengthen in January, we can finally paper over the weak areas of our team. But if we don't do any of it, we're likely to slide out of contention by February. It'll take a cleverer man than me to predict the trajectory of our season with any sense of confidence. 

As Cesc intimated, and as Doris Day once sang, what will be, will be. The future's not ours to see. For example, take my nephew George:

He's a bright kid. He was born a month premature, but he's already mouthing words at 4 months of age. He's also got good taste - he only wears Huggies nappies. He's also already got a very Arsenal name (and I'm wondering if it's possible to get a vintage kid's size Charlie George shirt for him). On the face of it, he'd make a perfect little gooner.  But in light of his intelligence, I'm not so sure. 

I've been speculating about the right time to turn him into an Arsenal fan, but I'm starting to doubt my persuasive abilities. He's a very smart baby, and by the time he's able to comprehend what football is, he'll probably realise that Barcelona are a much better prospect than Arsenal. Why should he follow the second most beautiful football club in the world when he can follow the best? I can hope that he'll come around to support Arsenal for sentimental reasons (his Charlie George shirt and all), but I'm not so sure.

So what'll happen in the future, in one year and then in five? I'll influence him the best I can. But while he might trot around in a Charlie George shirt at 3 years of age, he might've switched to a Messi shirt by the time he's 7. I don't know.

As Cesc puts it, I don't know what's going to happen tomorrow. 

Saturday, November 14, 2009

New Zealand at the World Cup

Where's the justice in this?

When Australia were in Oceania, our last four World Cup qualification play-off opponents were Argentina, Iran, Uruguay and Uruguay. We lost marginally against Argentina. We were 20 minutes away from qualification against Iran. We lost to Uruguay under Frank Farina, and we won on penalties against them under Guus Hiddink. We played some genuinely tough games, in some of the most partisan locations imaginable. 

One of the main reasons we switched to the Asian Confederation was to get a fairer World Cup qualification route. It's fairer to play in two home-and-away groups for qualification, rather than a sudden-death play-off position every four years.  But now that we've left Oceania, we've given that rather tough qualification scenario to New Zealand. And so, what does New Zealand have to do to qualify for the World Cup? 

That's it.

They've done the hard work and drawn 0-0 against Bahrain away. Bahrain took the unusual step of acclimatising for a chilly, wet Wellington in a heat-wave struck Sydney. All New Zealand have to do is show up in front of 35,000 home fans, keep it tight at the back and score a goal. It's not exactly difficult. They just have to practice the dour, negative football that they showed at the Confederations Cup. 

I've got mixed emotions about this. 

Part of me thinks that they're going to get through this too easily. World Cup qualification should be hard, dammit. They have to be earned. You have to endure early morning defeats and the chilling reality that it'll be another four years until the next chance comes around. You can't expect to rock up to a World Cup by playing Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands, and then a play-off with Bahrain. Where's the brave 1-1 draw in front of 120,000 fanatical fans in Tehran? The rioters at Montevideo? The cynical antics of those bastardly South Americans? It's not a World cup qualification unless you've faced all of that for 32 years. 

Part of me wishes New Zealand well. I realise that it's politically correct to barrack for the Asian side. We are in the Asian Confederation now. But I can't help but wish New Zealand makes it. It could be their only realistic chance of qualification for a long, long time. I can't imagine FIFA like the prospect of New Zealand getting through from such a weak route. 

But most of me is really, really excited by the prospect of a World Cup group featuring Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and England. If that happens, I think it's a realistic possibility that we can knock England out of the World Cup. England don't travel well. South Africa are at home and, despite being a basket-case, should cobble enough points to get through. New Zealand won't win anything but they'll try their best to hobble England's players. And Australia are awesome. 

So it's possible. If there's one thing better than qualifying for the World Cup, it's doing over England while in the World Cup. That's the whole reason the World Cup was invented, after all. All these countries want a chance to thump England in a meaningful match. And come next year, it might be our turn.

But first, New Zealand's got to win tonight's match.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Song's right - running is hard work

Lately, I've taken up running. I've never done it before, and it's hard work. I've downloaded a series of podcasts that's designed to turn me from a couch potato to a decent runner in 9 weeks. It's challenging. So far, I get about 8 minutes worth of actual running in a 30 minute period. The rest of the time is spent walking, gasping for breath and wheezing in a sickly manner.

Which brings me to Alex Song. 

I admit, I was one of those people who got on his case for not running around on the pitch. It upset me to see him loping around in a casual manner while we were being over-run in the midfield. It offended me to see him walking around while Flamini, his predecessor, would've been pressing and harrying for the full 90 minutes. But maybe I was being too hard on him. Running is hard work, and running around for 90 minutes a game might be asking too much of a 20 year old with more important things on his mind. 

But hopefully, Alex Song will start running again soon. I hope he does, because he's a good player when he does. I was shocked late last season when Alex Song started running around in midfield. I think around the time of the CL semi-finals, he was close to being our best player. He was pressing, and positionally aware, and bossing the midfield with his physique. That's the kind of player we all want Song to be. 

One DM to whom we've been perennially linked, Yaya Toure, has been - surprise, surprise - linked with us again. Now, this is a guy who Song should try to emulate. He's strong and good in the tackle, he's positionally sound and he drives forward, and what's more important, he can run. There's very little chance we'll buy him (the main reason we were after him was to reunite him with Kolo) but we need someone like him to protect the midfield and give a physical presence. Despite all the artistry on display, we need a midfield warrior to boss the opposition. 

I think Alex Song can still be that warrior, but he's got to start running again - even if it's hard work. I know it's tough. The first few weeks will be spent wheezing, choking and gasping for breathe. But we'll be a better team for it. 

Sunday, November 8, 2009

(I didn't watch) Arsenal 4, Wolves 1

"A personal reservation about this phase of Wenger's game-altering reign in English football is that he may have taken a brilliant idea to an unworkable extreme, and left Arsenal short of warriors to pick the team up and drive it forward, as Patrick Vieira and Emmanuel Petit did."

- Paul Hayward, saying it for all of us

How good is this Arsenal side? 

3-0 against Spurs. 4-1 against Alkmaar. And 4-1 last night against Wolves last night. I didn't watch it, though. I had a nap which, unfortunately, went on for the rest of the night. Still, I can't help but feel cheered by the result. We're developing a real momentum now. The frustrating Arsenal of previous seasons (lots of possession with no goals) seems to be a thing of the past. 

But the question remains, can we win anything with this side?

On the whole, I'm not convinced. We conceded a weak goal last night in the last couple of minutes. While it didn't effect the result, it's a worrying sign. Defensive lapses are habit-forming. If we don't take pride in clean sheets, then we're going to keep conceding easy goals, and it's going to hurt us in the end. Just think back to West Ham a few weeks ago. If we don't tighten up at the back, there are going to be more West Hams this season, and it will cost us in the end. 

There's a good article by Paul Hayward in the Guardian about this problem. The Arsenal bandwagon is the prettiest bandwagon in the Premier League. When the team's on a roll, supporting the Arse is the easiest thing in the world. It's only when the bandwagon loses steam, fucks up at the back, loses points and ends up empty-handed at the end of the season that you feel you're getting jibbed. 

What I really want to see in January are a couple of purchases: a good goalkeeper and a defensive midfielder who can fill in at centre-back.  Almunia's been reinstated as our 1st choice 'keeper, which I feel is the wrong decision. He's solid 90% of the time, but it's the other 10% that's going to kill us by the end of the season. And we need someone to take over from Song, at least while the ACN is on. I have nightmares that Diaby will be playing as our holding midfielder in January. Wenger needs to understand that just because a man looks like Vieira, he's not necessary going to play like him. And anyway, Diaby doesn't look like Vieira without the shaved head. 

It's not going to happen, though. I'm resigned to that. Arsene Wenger is a purist. He doesn't believe in defending. He believes in passing, movement, technique and selecting players that look like other players. So come January, Almunia's still going to be around, and he'll concede a couple near-post goals and then talk to the media about our "new-found resolve". And Diaby will be a holding midfielder who can't tackle. I hope he shaves his head so that, at least, he'll bear a passing resemblance to Vieira. That'll help. 

Still, if the goals continue, this may be bunk and Arsenal may win the league this year. And if that happens, Arsene Wenger will probably take it to another extreme and play a 1-3-4-1 next season to accommodate the freakish talents of Vela, Wilshere and Ramsey.

I'd stay up to watch that. 

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I was wrong, Arsene Knows

"We have certainly not had so many creative options before. This was without Nicklas Bendtner, Theo Walcott, Carlos Vela and Denilson while Eduardo and Tomas Rosicky did not start. That's why I was always amazed people told me to buy, buy, buy."

- Arsene Wenger, sticking two proverbial fingers at me

I was wrong. Arsene Knows. We don't need to buy. After thumping Tottenham last weekend 3-0 and thumping AZ Alkmaar last night 4-1, we're don't need to buy. We have the requisite creative options already. 

van Persie is purring in his role as a central striker. We don't need a big centre forward who can handle two defenders on his own, play with his back to the goal and run the channels. We just needed someone like van Persie with good touch, good vision, and a left foot should be donated to the Louvre once van Persie's career has finished.

Fabregas has scored 3 goals in 2 games, and he's been brilliant. Great goal against Tottenham. Two goals last night. He was a prolific scorer as a kid, and now he's showing that he can be just as prolific as an adult. He doesn't have to play deeper to be truly effective. He's seeing less of the ball now, but his possessions are now more decisive. 

Vermaelen is the ballsy, steely, tough-as-nuts defender we've been missing. Just because he's a couple of inches under 6 foot, doesn't mean he's crap. And he wades forwards to score goals. It just shows that you shouldn't dismiss short, pasty-white Belgians as useless until you've seen them in action. 

We've still a creaky defence. We still need a better 'keeper. We still need a defensive midfielder to take over from Song when he goes to the ACN. Without those reinforcements, we're going to have more West Ham moments. One needs to keep that in mind in the midst of all the hyperbole. But still, if we can keep thumping in the goals in like we've been doing all season, how much does it really matter? I think we've been averaging 3 goals a game in the league, and has anyone managed that and not won anything? 

I know that in Championship Manager, it's pretty difficult not to be a dominant force if you're scoring that much every game. Typically, I finish a season with about 95 points, 100 goals for, 30 goals against. I lose 1-2 games a year and maybe draw five. We're on target for a season like that. It would be incredible if we don't finish in the Top 2 if we keep up this scoring. 

It's going to be a fun season, whatever happens.