And they saw Aaron Ramsey score a cracking goal to secure a 3-2 victory. I think it’s safe to say the lad is back to his best.
His mental well being was once called into question by some Arsenal fans is Aaron Ramsey.
When he returned to action after fracturing his fibula and tibia four years ago, some thought his game had gone. I heard Arsenal fans call phone-in shows and say the manager should sell Ramsey.
But Arsene Wenger is a patient man.
Aaron Ramsey told Stuart James: “The manager had loads of chats with me about it and always said: ‘Never let it get to you, because I know what you can do,'” Ramsey says. “I’m grateful for what he’s done for me and for the faith that he’s had in me.
“Even when I was injured he gave me a new contract. Through the criticism he played me. He’s always believed in me and I can’t thank him enough for that. I owe a lot to him and hopefully I’ve delivered some of that back this season.”
The tide turned in Ramsey’s favour come November. He was scoring at will once more and was a much more confident player. But Ramsey says his recovery began in the second half of the previous season. That’s when he put the psychological trauma of the injury sustained at Stoke behind him.
He says: “That’s the point when I was 100% back mentally, 100% into tackles, no hesitation, just clear again and free.
“I realised that I was getting stuck back in again: ‘I’m winning the ball back, I’m feeling good out on the pitch again. I’m happy out there.’ And then I carried that on, worked on a few things in pre-season, like composure in front of goal and taking longer instead of rushing things. And I just think you always have to believe in yourself – I always knew it was there.”
The way he scored that third goal will have attracted the attention of managers around the world. Players who can finish is such a clinical fashion are in short supply.
But Aaron Ramsey has no wish to leave a club he believes will win more trophies in the coming years.
He says: “I’m happy here, I feel we have a team that can be successful and I want to be part of that.”