'Burnley fail to rain on Arsenal's parade'

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Thankfully, I gave this one a miss. We rarely take a battering nowadays, but if ever the circumstances pointed towards it occurring, these ones did.

6th May 2018

Arsene Wenger’s swansong fittingly featured a dominance in home possession, and incorporated traits of the Arsenal performances ‘The Professor’ will be best remembered for, as a Burnley side already assured of a place in Europe uncharacteristically sauntered their way towards the final whistle.

The Gunners bested Burnley from the off, and completely blew us away from the minute Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang fired them into the lead from close range.

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This was a feel-good afternoon for the hosts, whose slick passing and quick movement has seldom been seen for such large proportions of a fixture throughout the latter stages of Wenger’s reign.

Whilst the game bore no real significance for either side, there was a slim chance that the Clarets could beat their hosts to a sixth-place berth with victory here, though the scarcity of that reality bought our players more credit with supporters than their performance here deserved.

I can’t pretend to be in any way angered by the display, especially considering that I myself had wrote this game off as a likely defeat, particularly once news had filtered through that it would represent Wenger’s last at the Emirates.

But to call our showing lethargic would be extremely kind – we were not at the races, and for the most part looked content to play second fiddle to the surrounding celebrations.

Whilst Sean Dyche would never tolerate an attitude of that nature, I’m certain he’ll understand the toll an occasion such as this, coupled with a lengthy season in which his men have accomplished so much, would have impacted on their efforts in north London.

Had Alexandre Lacazette not doubled the hosts’ advantage just before the break, we perhaps could have maintained some faint semblance of hope of gaining something from this game.

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But it was not to be, and Arsenal fully deserved to romp clear in the second half, as Sead Kolasinac and Alex Iwobi both got on the scoresheet before Aubameyang rounded off a thoroughly convincing win by completing his brace.

The former Dortmund man is one of the brighter notes of the latter stages of Wenger’s tenure, and should prove the focal point of the Gunners’ attack for at least a few years to come.

Here’s hoping we approach our final game of the season, opposing Dyche’s predecessor and media golden boy Eddie Howe, with far more fervour than we did this encounter.

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