Quite a game, no? Nick Miller watched Arsenal's thrilling 1-1 draw with Everton and saw two teams who have improved, leaving certain others trailing...
Another rotten day for David Moyes, whose desperation for a win was epitomised by the selection of an unfit Robin van Persie in attack. It's looking pretty worrying indeed...
Every club has an unhinged section of their support. The sort that will defend their club's actions even if they advocate puppy slaughter as half-time entertainment. The sort that will tell you that your opinion is incorrect and they are right 'just because'. The sort that will give their money to strangers on the internet in order to fund the purchase of the most expensive footballer of all time.
Being fanatical about your football club is of course both perfectly natural and to be encouraged. Logic is an optional extra while at a match, because in what other walk of life would you scream bloody murder at someone for making a minor error in their place of work?
However, there should be a limit. There is a place where rational thought should take over, and that place is basically anywhere else outside of a football ground. But too often it doesn't - something exacerbated by the magical place of mystery, wonder and opinion that is the internet.
This is the place where sense goes out of the window, and the idea of being a football fan becomes skewed. The idea that one must blindly back your club, regardless of context or logic, is one that is becoming more and more prevalent, and not just in the darker corners of the internet.
One might think this is relatively harmless, but it creates a pack mentality that is not only pretty unpleasant, but also potentially corrosive and forces rational discussion to the sidelines. Perspective is skewed and divisions are created.
I had this experience earlier this year when a paragraph in the middle of a 1,000-word piece on the Championship mentioned that I found Hull boring. The outraged response from East Riding was extraordinary, with the standard levels of abuse punctuated by the surreal sight of one particularly irked Hullster grassing me up to former singer Sinitta (who for reasons that aren't clear is a Hull fan) on Twitter. A fellow scribe was recently advised to 'die' by an Everton fan for commenting that Leighton Baines isn't good enough for Manchester United. I could go on. Clacking one's tongue in irritation when someone expresses an opinion contrary to your own is understandable, but this sort of response is very much not.
Journalists must of course accept that a certain amount of abuse comes with the job, but it's still interesting to figure out where this abuse comes from. Rather than seeing a negative opinion about their club as just that, they seem to see it as an insult to themselves - you aren't saying their team is rubbish, you're saying they're an arsehole. If you have supported a club for most of your life then it's perhaps understandable that they become part of your personality, but with some, the lines between human and club are more blurred.
It also manifests itself the other way around. Say, for example, a Stoke fan complains about some rough-housing in a game - it is inevitable that sooner or later someone will say 'rich coming from a Stoke fan!' as if they're personally responsible for Tony Pulis's game plan. It is perfectly possible for someone to have an opinion on something in football without it being informed or dominated by what their club does. Again, this is part of the 'club invading and taking over a person's consciousness' mentality.
Something to which non-journalists will probably be able to relate is being told you're not a proper fan when questioning the actions of your team. We'll presumably all have been told on forums/comment sections/Twitter etc to 'Get behind the team or f*ck off and support United/City/Royal Engineers' when not expressing a 100% cultish belief in our manager/chairman/players.
And that's what it is - it's a cult mentality, blindly follow the leader and don't you dare say anything against the party line.
It's a curious mentality, the idea that the actions of a football team should not be questioned by its support. On the contrary, supporters should question everything their club does, because to one extent or another you're keeping them going. If you don't carefully consider every action of your side then come down one way or the other, but instead blindly back any hare-brained scheme, then you're not doing your job as a fan.
Clubs have encouraged this idea that fans are purely cheerleaders, because it makes them more pliant customers. Buy this shirt to prove your love for the club, ignore that we've just sacked the chief executive and replaced him with the manager's agent.
This isn't a straw man argument. It's not a discussion about the fringes of society, but rather a creeping sense of what being a football fan is becoming. So question things, and when you think your team is dropping a bollock, say so. It doesn't make you any less of a fan.
Nick Miller - follow him on Twitter