Today is the very definition of ‘muggy’, with my clothes sticking to me and general uncomfortableness being the feeling for today it seems.

I also seemed to have stepped on to an artists impression of Victorian London, because there’s fog everywhere, so all I need now is Sherlock Holmes to solve a crime for me and I know I’m dreaming.

I’m glad it’s not Victorian London though. I’m pretty sure I’d be cheesed off at the lack of Arsenal stuff to think about. Or write about.

The team news that was delivered on the official site was as expected yesterday, with Rosicky out for possibly longer than two months and Jack Wilshere sidelined for four weeks. I supposed at least Alexis is fully fit and Bellerin is also available, so we have something to be cheery about on the injury front. It will be really interesting to see whether Debuchy retains his place in the side, because the calls for Bellerin to be first choice amongst the fan base have been growing increasingly louder.

Personally I think Debuchy is the more consistent performer in the team and whilst I like that Arsène has the option of choosing either, I think ultimately Debuchy will get the nod when the decision is 50/50. The Frenchman is a little bit more defensively astute and with the pacey wingers that Palace have on show on Sunday, you need somebody with that little bit of extra nous to keep them quiet, I think.

The Welbeck situation is a slightly more concerning one. How is he not back yet? He’s effectively missed nearly six months of football with this injury he’s picked up. Sure, it’s been mitigated somewhat by the team performances and squad depth at the end of the season as well as the fact that two of those months have been the summer, but he’s still been injured during that time and apparently hasn’t recovered. That sounds worrying to me and with competition at an all-time-high in the squad, I’m wondering when he’s going to get his chance. Even when he does, let’s be prepared for sections of the fan base calling him ‘useless’, despite the fact he effectively needs to start his pre season in competitive games.

I really like Welbeck. I like his application, his pace and his drive. If he was the finished that Walcott could be we’d have a gem on our hands and I’m hoping that he has had his composure supplements during this extended summer break, because he could be a fantastic asset for us.

Elsewhere across the official site, Arsène has regaled us with his story about how he narrowly avoided losing Vieira to Ajax. It’s fascinating to think that in this industry where teams spend so much time analysing the information and data they have to hand, where contracts are complex and no two transfers are alike, the human element still has such a role to play. Wenger picked up the phone and told Vieira “I’m coming to Arsenal. Get over to London” and the kid went from Amsterdam to London in an instant. The power of influence of that is amazing. In a world of Sporting and Football Directors supposedly running transfer deals from start to finish, it shows you just how powerful the personal touch is too.

As Arsène also admits in that interview, the Vieira transfer shows you how fine the lines are between success and failure at the top. Arsène hints in that interview that his own career may have been different had he not signed Vieira. Imagine that? Some sort of footballing ‘butterfly effect’ in which the Invincibles never actually happened. Doesn’t bear thinking about. We’d probably have Owen Coyle as our manager. 

You might want to pour a bit of cold water on yourself at this point. It will wash away any negative parallel universe’s that you’re thinking of.

So yeah, it all could have been different and we could have seen a different Arsenal team to the one today, but these kind of small margins happen all the time. It has happened and we should appreciate whatever circumstances, whether they feel fortuitous or not, as they happen. You only need to look at the Francis Coquelin to see another example of fortune and good timing as an example of these small margins. It does make me laugh when people say, however, “yeah, but Wenger got lucky with Coquelin, so don’t let anybody tell you it wasn’t part of some master plan”. When, in football, is there ever any football master plan? There are so many variables in the game that it’s impossible for anyone to have a master plan. Football is less like chess and more like cards. Make the best with the hand you’re dealt. Who cares if Arsène got lucky with Coquelin? At least he did get lucky and we found a destroyer in the middle of the park to break up the play. That works for me and hopefully for you too.

And on that note I’ll end today’s tales from inside the Arsenal part in my head. You have a good one and look forward to the weekend.