Now that you're all properly motivated, I can let us all down easily. Yes, our title challenge is now finished, and it will be another season without a trophy. Yes, this happened because we lost to spurs for the first time in 11 years. Yes, Harry Redknapp is a twitchy, droopy-faced old cunt. But allow me, the pessimist, to put a positive spin on things.

We lost to Spurs for the first time in 11 years. Eleven. Years. It took them from 1999 until this past Wednesday to record a league victory over Arsenal. In all that time, this "rivalry" was much like the rivalry between a hammer and a nail. Indeed, the Arsenal team that they beat Wednesday was without more than half of its regular starters AND had the crippling handicap of starting Manuel Almunia in goal. "But Brett," you might ask, "would we really have done any better with Jens Lehmann in goal?" To which I would answer, "Dude, are you fucking retarded? YES." We would have done better with Bob Wilson in goal, and he's 68 years old. It took the perfect storm of negative factors affecting us for totts to take three points off of us.

Our title challenge is finished, this is true. Arseblogger pointed out yesterday that mathematically we're still alive, but like him, I say fuck math (or maths, depending on where you're reading this). To be fair, it would have taken a miracle to have overtaken Chelsea even if we had won on Wednesday, and miracles have been in short supply at Arsenal lately. And though the title has eluded us yet again, we still have something to play for. If we can finish strong we can still at least topple Man Ure for second place, which would be a nice thing in itself, and could maybe shut the Mancs up a bit... although I'm sure they'll go on about their Mickey Mouse Cup win, to which I would reply:

And, lest I should forget, 'Arry Redknapp is a droopy-faced, twitchy old cuntbucket. Still, spurs fans (such as they are) are lucky to have him. After all, it takes a hell of a manager to take his team to the FA Cup semifinals, and he can't really be blamed for losing to a powerhouse like Pompey. They beat fucking everybody, don't they?

And the lone piece of good news we've had this week is that Robin van Persie is back in the side, and based on the performance he put in midweek, he hasn't lost anything. He was denied a couple of times by Gomes (who really was at his best, it must be said), and with his introduction into the side, we finally had two players going who made any kind of effort.

The other of course was Sol Campbell, and big fat Sol had perhaps his best game since rejoining Arsenal. Despite receiving as much abuse as you're likely to see a player get, he showed pace that I didn't think he had, his positioning was inch-perfect, and he did his damndest to motivate the rest of the side... Unfortunately, they by and large coasted through as though we were playing Peterborough or some god-awful MLS team. The one major negative we should take away from Wednesday's result: most of this team showed absolutely no heart or desire.

It's not easy of course to lose a captain and best player like Cesc Fabregas, but this is not a team bereft of veterans. Even some of the younger players have seen a great deal of first-team action for Arsenal (case in point: Denilson is but 22, yet he's played over 100 first-team matches for us). Still the feeling I got was that, barring a few players like Sol, Nasri and to a point, Rosicky, we fielded a team that were content to do the bare minimum, cash their paychecks and go home. This is not the attitude of a champion, and until this is addressed, we won't win a thing. I'm not trying to sound like Debbie Downer, but it's a fact. Sol won the double with us and was one of the Invincibles. We don't have enough Sol Campbell's.

We'll have plenty of time to discuss who should come in the summer and who should go, but I'm not whoring for hits on this blog, so we can discuss that another time. For now, this is the team we have, and whoever dons the shirt, we need to support them. We have an EARLY match against Wigan on Sunday, and I hope that you'll all continue to show up and cheer on the Arsenal in spite of Wednesday's result. There will be other titles, other cups, other moments of glory, and many, many more goals.

I'll leave you with the words of Nick Hornby, a far better writer than I'll ever hope to be, and a proper Gooner:

"It's not easy to be a football fan. It takes years. But if you put in the hours, you're welcomed without question into a new family. Except in this family, you care about the same people, and hope for the same things. What's childish about that?"

Stay classy.