Morning folks. Lots of juicy Arsenal stuff to talk about today, so let’s get right down to it, starting from where I left off yesterday which was that Arsène confirmed what Özil’s agent said which was that talks were going well. of course we’d hardly expect the manager to say “it’s a faaaaaacking shambles actually. We keep phoning them but it goes straight to voicemail. In the team Whatsapp group Mesut has even left so ill be honest with ya, it ain’t looking to good” is he?
He’s putting his always positive face on the situation like he did with Nasri, Cesc, Adebayor, etc. But ultimately we know that it’s probably more likely they’re both off in summer or perhaps even this coming January, saying “yes, everything is possible” when specifically asked about that, which will be of great comfort to Pep who will be massaging his folliclly challenged cranium in the absence of a long, thin, heavily waxed and curly moustasche. Although City have enough money to be able to buy him an implant that he can add to his top lip.
My view has been – and will remain – that we should be cashing in on the both of them. Abroad. Make it clear we’ll do a deal on mainland Europe and see if some of the richer and bigger clubs will bite. Whether or not that happens remains to be seen. Especially if somebody like Alexis digs his heels in because he wants to play for Pep.
Whether Özil and Alexis play this weekend against Watford at Vicarage Road remains something still up for debate, because whilst Özil is fit Alexis had not returned as of yesterday morning. There’s also the question as to whether Arsène is limiting Özil’s game time because of the situation, and the fact that we’ve coped pretty well without him, but given he didn’t play for the German national team last weekend I’d be surprised.
His fellow German compatriot Shkodran Mustafi certainly won’t play, with Arsène confirming that he’ll be out until after the next international break, which means between 4-6 weeks out. Whether or not he gets the curse of being an Arsenal player – usually meaning 3 months out – we’ll have to see, but despite him being unconvincing to some I thought he’d played quite well recently and there’s no doubt that he’s been an integral part of the team that has kept plenty of clean sheets since Anfield.
It will probably mean a run of games for Holding but I wonder if Arsène might think of Big Per as an option too, especially if Kolasinac is injured as he suggested yesterday. That would force him to play Nacho as a left wing-back and mean two slots available in central defence or worryingly, three if Koscielny hasn’t recovered.
Already we’re looking thin on the ground in defence. Only at Arsenal could we have six central defenders and go into a Premier League away game with concerns over having to be makeshift…
Still, as is the case with Arsenal, in other positions we’re massively overstocked and still players can’t get in, like Jacky Wilshere who Arsène says is in the best form he’s been in for a long time. I think deep down we’re all praying that he’s had some kind of secret adamantium bone remodelling done over the summer just gone because we all want to see him get a string of games, but we all know that it’s sadly a matter of time before he breaks down again. You just have to look at the history and sadly the balance of probabilities are weighted against him. But we’ve got him now and I wonder if he’ll play some part from the bench on Saturday evening. I suspect he’ll definitely play midweek next week, but I have a sneaky feeling he’ll be called upon against the Hornets, you know.
Whether he’ll be joined by Welbeck on the bench, would only be speculation, but I don’t reckon Arsène is throwing ‘Welbz’ in from the start. He, like Jack, is a brittle player at times and easing him back in seems the most sensible option.
So what did we learn from yesterday? Well, injuries are certainly starting to creep in across the whole squad, for one! It means we’re already having to do some shuffling so let’s hope that the team tomorrow can cope with the pressure. We’re on a good run in the league and we really need as much momentum as possible before we hit City away at the beginning of November. That’s about three weeks away and we need to have racked up plenty of points for that game. Hopefully we will. Starting tomorrow.
And that’s when I shall speak to you next. Adios amigos!