I often find Player interviews on ATVO offer something interesting. An insight into a player’s psyche, thoughts on the spirit within the dressing room, opinions on various issues, or even some personal tidbits; there is something in these that we don’t get from regular media coverage. And after listening to his last few interviews, Wojciech Szczesny is fast becoming one of my favourite players.
There is absolutely no doubt about the youngster’s talent but I also love his honesty, confidence, and maturity. The lanky Pole’s from that extremely rare breed who make you believe they belong at the highest level just by their presence.
Speaking to ATVO after the defeat at Old Trafford Szczesny made some interesting comments. When asked about Arsenal’s say in the title race the Premier League debutant said,
We have a belief that we are the best side in the Premier League. If we put in the right performance and if we get a little bit more luck than we did today then we’re capable of beating anyone. So we feel we have a chance in the title race.
Now I don’t know about you but I really like to hear that from the players. If they are to win the title, they must believe that they are the best. Of course, there can be an argument that the recent results against the main rivals don’t support this theory but if the players let it affect them the situation will only get worse.
Sometimes while watching the games I do get the feeling that the players lack the belief they can beat the best. But I’m more than happy to take Szczesny’s word on this issue. It could be that what I sense as a lack of confidence is more a hesitation borne out of tactical adjustments and forced changes to the starting line-up. After all, despite all the criticism, no one can claim that we’ve had a stable back four or midfield all through the season.
This confidence has to be backed up with performances and the Polish custodian has no doubt what is needed against Stoke at the weekend.
We’re good enough. Surely, we are good enough to recover from this game and get the three points against Stoke. If you think about winning the title this year we’ve got to recover and get the three points. It’s as simple as that.
It really is as simple as that when we talk about it. Actually doing that on the pitch will be a little tougher but we just have to break our trend of losing two in a row. Even a draw will be a poor result. More on this before the game.
What I liked most was the youngster’s assessment of his own performance and the matter of fact manner in which he talked about his two crucial saves.
I must admit and I actually said to Wayne after the game that I was a little bit scared when he took that shot on because I knew he saw me a little bit off my line and that he was going to do it. But I don’t think he connected very well so it was a rather easy save. The first one he [Anderson] pretty much hit my chest. There wasn’t a lot I’d done. I just spread myself and he hit me. They weren’t very good saves but they kept us in there so I enjoyed it.
Szczesny had a decent game even if his positioning and distribution was a little off. I doubt if he’d agree with some writers on the internet who thought he was fantastic even though he had very little to do.
I find it rather strange and somewhat unfortunate that Fabianski get’s criticized for his distribution when he has such a game while this kid is hyped up. Nothing against Szczesny but it does highlight the inherent prejudice in many of the opinions we see or hear.
I don’t know if Fabianski will be back for the Stoke game or not but I wouldn’t mind seeing Szczesny face another big challenge and one where he will really be tested.