I’ve had my issues with Arsène Wenger this season, but that doesn’t still mean I don’t support him as the manager of the team, and therefore don’t want to hear some of his insight and tactical approach ahead of what is possibly the biggest game we’ve played against West Ham since I don’t know when. So when he sits down to do his presser and is served up questions like “how many more chances are you going to give Jack Wilshere?” After he was pictured outside a nightclub, I really do despair, because that’s a minute of a ten minute press conference that is wasted on tabloid tittle-tattle. 

Why couldn’t the same journalist have asked him whether he though Premier defences had begun to adapt to Alexis’ style of play on the left, so does he see this right wing position as a permanent thing, or will he change it game-by-game? What’s wrong with a question about whether the rise to prominence of Elneny means that Coquelin always needs that type of player beside him to bring balance? Why can’t these people ask proper football questions? 

They will tell you that they are asking the questions that people want to hear. The questions that sell papers. But are they? Who listens to Wenger press conferences other than Arsenal fans and perhaps the fans of the opposition of Arsenal that weekend? I’d wager not that many, so asking stupid questions that get the same response “we’ll deal with this internally” seems irrelevant and farcical. I certainly won’t be buying a single paper from any of those journalists companies, nor will I be clicking any links, so all they’ve served to do is to put me off their drivel a little bit more.

Rant over. Now I can give some thoughts on what football-related stuff the manager actually said at his pre match presser yesterday. The good news is that we have players returning. Jack is in Under-21 action this evening, Ramsey is back in contention and we may just see Rosicky before the end of the season too, which would be a lovely send off if it could happen. Flamini might make the match day squad tomorrow too, but his role in the team has further diminished since the Coqneny partnership was forged, so I hope that it he isn’t seen tomorrow because it’ll mean we’ve had yet more injuries to cope with.

I saw a few people bemoan the possible re-introduction of Rambo to the first team yesterday, but whilst I understand that they would prefer not to see him in the starting XI because of the form of the team right now, I can’t get behind being upset that he’s back for us. He’s a good player. I’m not sure how he fits naturally in to the team, but to have somebody who knows how to get goals and who will always put a shift in for the team, he will be an asset for us if he’s in the squad this weekend. And besides, for those of you who don’t want to see him from the start relax, because Arsène has already said he is reluctant to make changes to a winning side. That makes sense. We’ve won our last two games, we’ve had a full week of rest since the Watford win, our balance looks good and we have a fluidity in our forward play that would inevitably be reduced with the arrival of the Welshman. I’d expect him to play some part tomorrow though. 

The questions we also asked about Payet and, when asked about whether we’d ever fracked him, Arsène answered honestly. I’ve seen his words become a little twisted online, with people suggesting that he’s doing a bit of an ‘Arry on ‘the ones that got away’. If you’ve watched the presser you’ll know that this isn’t the case. He was asked whether the club had ever fracked him, admitted they’d looked at him, but have already had a glut of creative midfielders and so didn’t take anything further. Makes sense to me. Let’s not forget that Payet is 29. He’s not a 21-year-old who has evaded our scouts. He’s had a fantastic season and given half my family are West Ham fans I’m pleased that they’ve got a player making such an impact, but nobody can convince me that Payet is a player we need in the team right now. Signing him last summer wouldn’t have made a not of difference to us now, because he’d have been an understudy to Özil and hardly played all season.

We need signings in different positions, including deep-lying midfield and Granit Xhaka was mentioned again, with Arsène not denying we were interested, but cleverly deflecting the question. Whether or not we’re even close to looking at him I’m not sure, but I think it’s positive at least that it feels like we’re after that type of player. We can all save the anguish of a lack of a signing for the June and July months!

For now, whilst the faint hope still remains with the league, we must worry more about silverware than player acquisition. 

On that note, I shall bid you a good morrow/afternoon and catch you on match day. Out.