• By Charlie Stong

Arsenal 3 Stoke City 0


Arsenal 3 Stoke City 0

The best thing about yesterday’s result was it may, ultimately, mean Stoke City are relegated at the end of the season.

There are other teams us Gooners are meant to hate more - Spurs for reasons of geography, Man City and Chelsea for the way they have bought trophies in recent years.

But really there is not one side in the whole country I despise more than Stoke City.

Their moronic fans continue to boo Aaron Ramsay for having his leg snapped in two by that big gangly oaf of a center-half whose name I can’t even bring myself to write, they play in a cold, windswept stadium in the arse end of nowhere, they. continue to employ cloggers like Joe Allen.

They are a thoroughly unlikeable club and if they are relegated I will delight in watching their crying fans as they realise they will be playing football in the Championship next year - exactly where they deserve to be.

Apart from pushing Stoke closer to the drop this was also a result which was more than welcome before the big game against CSKA Moscow on Thursday. The performance wasn’t great and the 3-0 score line was possibly slightly flattering, but we certainly did enough to deserve to win the game.

League games are taking on a bit of a flat feel of late. There may be slightly more to play for following Chelsea’s defeat to Spurs - we’re now five points adrift of the west Londoners with just a sniff of maybe finishing fifth. But that’s clutching at straws. It doesn’t really matter anyway as sixth place will be good enough for a Europa League place this season anyway seeing as Manchester City’s place in Europe’s secondary competition for winning the Carabao Cup will go to sixth place as they take up a Champions League place.

And so attention turns to Thursday nights again and Europe. We need a good performance and a good result, another 3-0 would do very nicely. While we’re clearly the better team on paper, Russian grounds can be intimidating places to go, especially in the current political climate, and we don’t want to leave ourselves with too much to Moscow.

A good result on Thursday and suddenly a trophy and a Champions League place from this disappointing season begins to seem possible.

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