Morning folks. Another working week begins and with Arsenal in action on Tuesday, we’ll be getting in to it pronto, because Arteta has another press conference this afternoon ahead of us playing against Chelsea tomorrow evening. Pep and Bernardo Silva can complain all they want, but I think we have a little more to complain about, given they’ll have played four games in 12 days from when they won at home to Luton to when they play Brighton on Thursday, whereas we would have played four in ten days when we play Chelsea tomorrow. Maybe they can point to doing 120 minutes again Madrid, but they’ve had all of their games domestically and two at home; we’ve had to travel to Wolves and Munich in that time.

But that’s what you get when you want to be in the latter stages of competitions and when you are one of the top elite teams. I don’t remember them complaining as much about it previously, so maybe the stresses of having tough opponents and things not going their way is catching up with them?

Who knows. All I do know is that after we did our job on Saturday night, yesterday it was the job of others for which we could take the pleasure in, which comes chiefly through laughing at other teams. And I certainly had to laugh at Man United scraping through against Coventry. Being three goals up with around 20 to play in the second half should mean a simple procession to the final, but I was listening to Man United fans on the radio yesterday as I drove down from seeing a friend in Doncaster and there were a fair few saying “we WILL concede”. Such is their leaky defence, that truth outed and I managed to catch the dying embers of extra time as I managed to walk in to a pub in London to see VAR was ruling out the Coventry fourth goal. That would have been funny, but it wasn’t to be and now Man United can go to the final and lose to City.

Hopefully by then City are playing for their only trophy of the season but I still suspect that it won’t be. I have hope that it won’t be but we are inching closer and closer to the most ultimate of crunch times.

33 games played for Arsenal and 74 points. Liverpool played yesterday and we had about eight minutes of hope that Fulham would do something and play like they did against us, but perhaps they are on the beach a little bit having already accumulated 42 points and so the urgency isn’t quite there. I only hope that on Thursday Brighton don’t have the mindset, which I think might be a stretch because I think at this stage it’s unlikely that they’ll be able to creep in to the European qualification spaces this season. That only falls to seventh and at the moment that’s Man United on 50 points. Brighton are on 44 so that’s a six point swing and although West Ham lost to give them a chance, there are Chelsea above them and with a game in hand. We have to hope that if we can beat Chelsea it might give them hope, but in reality I suspect that Brighton won’t have enough for a City team who we are holding out hope will drop points somewhere.

From an Arsenal perspective there hasn’t been a ton of additional stuff that has come out in the last 24 hours (other than the Arsenal women winning 3-0 which was good and had another pretty full, but given there are only three games left and Chelsea are six points clear, I suspect Arsenal are going to finish third this season), probably because the players just got on the bus post Wolves, headed straight home and spent yesterday with a day off resting. I suspect they’ll be back in training today and whilst we often all joke about how it’s pointless asking Arteta about team news, he will literally have had bare any time with them today to assess what the full availability and fatigue levels of some players are right now. It will be a case of patching them up and sending them out against a Chelsea team who I’d have loved to have held on and played 120 minutes on Saturday, but sadly it was not mean to be.

I touched on it a bit yesterday but I do wonder what their mentality and levels will be like as well. That was pretty much their best chance of silverware this season gone and having seen pockets of that game and the chances they created, I wonder how that dressing room will have felt after getting a fair few opportunities from a tired City side. We will be tired too, but as opposed to the City FA Cup game on Saturday in which Chelsea had five days to prepare, they will have had roughly the same amount of time as us to prepare and so I wonder how Poch might shuffle his deck – if at all – for a trip to The Emirates. Arteta will no doubt be asked the fatigue question too, as well as how much he might need to rotate, which I suspect he’ll be reluctant as always to give any answers to, but I do think that he’ll have to rotate in some respect tomorrow evening. Who that might be and how that might be remains to be seen, but I suspect it’ll be at the sharp end of the pitch rather than in defence too much. More on that tomorrow.

For today I think I’ll call time on the Monday musings. Amanda did a morning pod with GeoffArsenal yesterday to digest the game on Saturday evening, so if you want to have a listen you can do so here.

Back tomorrow with a look at Chelsea and how we might line up. See you then.