Arsenal: at a bowling lane near you

Arsenal: at a bowling lane near you

Eduardo da Silva’s injury in Arsenal’s draw with Birmingham completely overshadowed the contribution of Theo Walcott, who scored his first goals in the Premiership last weekend. The first was a real poacher’s goal, flicking in the ball from close range after Emmanuel Adebayor fairly challenged the goalkeeper while the second an exciting effort as the 19-year-old skipped past a marker and fired in low and hard from the edge of the area. Walcott had to wait a long time for his first goal in the Premiership but revealed he is feeling good about things going into the important home clash with Aston Villa.

“I feel upbeat, I feel confident. The goals helped and they gave me a boost so hopefully I can take that into Saturday.”

Walcott is feeling fineA lot of people have questioned Walcott’s development as a playert this season, with the general consensus tending to be that he has not come on as well as many Arsenal supporters would have liked. Although two goals against Birmingham City is hardly going to change that opinion I feel he has made a significant step in the right direction. When you look at how much confidence Adebayor picked up after scoring a goal it’s not improbable that Walcott’s goals on the weekend could be the start of a mini-purple patch. With Eduardo and Tomas Rosicky out injured and Emmanuel Eboue still two games away from returning from suspension the Englishman will surely get a couple more chances to prove his worth and it will be interesting to see how he goes.

After talking a little bit about himself, Walcott also became the first player to comment on the impact that Eduardo’s injury had on the squad in the days following the incident. The Englishman revealed that the Arsenal squad were allowed a couple of days away from the training ground by Arsene Wenger to get their mind of things before a tenpin bowling session was organised to give the morale within the team a bit of a boost.

“Of course Eduardo has been on our minds. It was a quiet coach ride home and felt just like a loss in truth. We had a couple of days off and then actually went bowling to keep our team-spirit up.”

Imagine going down to your local lanes for a bit of a bowl and looking over and seeing the entire Arsenal squad having a go. It would be hilarious. I can see guys like Kolo Toure and Adebayor, not to mention the resident jokester Eboue absolutely running amok, bowling multiple balls at a time or bowling as fast as they could, or even trying ridiculous trick shots. As I said before, I reckon it would be hilarious.

I’m actually quite interested to know who won. After all, these are professional footballers and as much as they love having a good time I’d think that things would get pretty competitive at times, even if they were only bowling. For some reason I can see Bacary Sagna being an absolutely gun bowler. Maybe it’s just that he seems to be good at everything he does but I can picture him bowling strike after strike and ending up with a score way over 200. Maybe I’m just going insane, but it is nice to talk about something other than the injury to Eduardo for once and I think I’m holding on to this for as long as possible. Letting go… now.

Manuel Almunia wants Emirates to be a fortressMoving along and everybody’s favourite bleach-blonde goalkeeper Manuel Almunia has spoken about the importance of maintaining a good home record in order to win the Premiership. The Spanish goalkeeper referenced the points Arsenal dropped at home to Birmingham a little while ago and stressed the need for the side to win all their remaining games at the Emirates Stadium.

“All the games we have at home must be won. Here we are so strong and that is what can help us win the title. What must not happen again is what happened in the League here against Birmingham where we dropped two points.”

He’s absolutely right, and there’s no better time to get things back on track than against Villa on Saturday night. A couple of people criticised Almunia for his part in Birmingham’s first goal last weekend and with Jens Lehmann having a good couple of games against Manchester United and AC Milan the pressure is on the Spaniard to get back to his best. While I feel he was blameless for James McFadden’s free-kick I’m sure he will be hoping for a clean sheet this week. If he gets it, Arsenal will be halfway towards getting the win they need, so hopefully things go his way.

That’s it for today. Just another reminder that if you still haven’t entered the O2 Arsenal Opus competition there is still time. You can vote for your favourite photo by clicking here and if you have no idea what I’m talking about you can read a bit about the Arsenal Opus by clicking here. Good luck.

What do you think?

Have your say on Walcott, bowling or Almunia by leaving a comment.

12 Responses to “Arsenal: at a bowling lane near you”

  1. RvP Fan
    February 28, 2008 at 11:05 pm #

    I would say one of the keepers would be best, what with them rolling, throwing the ball to players in games. I just hope they don’t forget and break a foot trying to drop kick it!!
    But it seems that, despite the injury, they are moving on and will be back to their best!!

  2. Harry Barracuda
    February 28, 2008 at 11:22 pm #

    David James is a brilliant fast bowler, but at the wickets not the pins.

  3. Spanish Fry
    February 28, 2008 at 11:32 pm #

    He’s not an Arsenal player though. I still reckon Bac. That guy would probably rip it up on a ping-pong table as well. I reckon he could do anything.

  4. gazzap
    February 28, 2008 at 11:34 pm #

    I think Gallas would have to win. he might not be the best but he’d simply have to win! if anyone was beating him he’d throw a strop and possibly cry!!
    seriously I like Gallas’ winning attitude. if every player on our team had the same attitude Arsenal would possibly only have failed to win one game this season (that being the debacle at ‘boro). for sure we would have held on on Saturday, so lets all cut Gallas some slack over his reaction after the pen.

    I would prefer to see walcott on the left where he can cut in and shoot with his stronger right foot.

  5. Spanish Fry
    February 28, 2008 at 11:38 pm #

    I like it too. Man he’s passionate. You need someone who gets angry when the chips are down and really tell it to the younger guys. Roy Keane did it at Manchester United and he was a fabulous captain, and I think Gallas is very similar.

  6. Tafadzwa
    February 29, 2008 at 6:37 pm #

    you can say that again Eboue bowling?? guys must have had fun..anyway get well soon Eduardo. http://www.latest-arsenal.blogspot.com

  7. Josh 5111960
    February 29, 2008 at 9:41 pm #

    Almunia
    Sagna-Senderos-Gallas-Clichy
    Hleb-Flamini-Fabregas-Diaby
    Adebayor-Bendtner
    Subs:Lehmann-Walcott-Denilson-Hoyte-Gilberto
    Arsaenal 2 – Villa

  8. ramugunner
    March 1, 2008 at 5:08 am #

    It will be a tough match tomorrow, believe me. Still I am hopeful of grabbing 3 important points. I hope Adebayor will not target to get in the scoresheet rather try to win game. If he will repeat another selfish play like last saturday there is no place for him at Arsenal hearts cause we play as a team. Hope Hleb will repaet his marvellous performance like the 1st half at Villa park and Hleb please shoot sometimes if you have chance, please.
    Fabregas was looking good against milan and birmingham in the middle and I expect him to have a big game scoring a goal too. We all are waiting for the response of Gallas after that burst after Brum game. I love that kind of energy from our captain but that was a little too much. We have to win this game for our beloved Dudu and to continue our title hopes. Manc have a relatively easy game so tomorrow is a must win. Villa have some talented player like Abolongar and Young and Carew as a deadly finisher. If we give them a little room, we will get punished. Hope Senderos will not struggle with his pace against Abolongar and Young. I remember Young played a good against us at Villapark and I think he is the biggest threat. They are also good in setpieces. I still believe in Lehmann more than Almunia. But is Wenger gonna drop Almunia, No.
    Lehmann should play against Milan though.
    Come on Gunns…..

  9. Markus
    March 1, 2008 at 7:52 am #

    This is Theo’s time to shine. Ade and Bendtner have issues still clear for all to see after last weeks golden opportunity to make the score 3-1 was squandered by Ade. Aston Villa game is crucial and will be a difficult one to win.

  10. TayGoon
    March 1, 2008 at 12:26 pm #

    Adebayor has never been good at directly creating goals for others. It is only this season that he is scoring a bunch. He is vital in keeping defenders occupied and also posing a threat. If he cant button down his difference with Bendtner, it will be Diaby who will shine this time around. The Boy is good at holding, dribbling, and is attack-minded as well as a good defender. That is why Wenger seems to be a little confused on how to deploy him. If he gets a chance to play DM for 3-4 consecutive games he will become a bonafide starter. Don’t get me wrong, Flamini is good. But Diaby IS THE FUTURE of Arsenal in that Position. Together with Fabregas, Denilson, and Song, we just need to keep them happy and around for some time. as I said earlier about (I must admit I have spent over 5 mins trying to remember his name. I would like to attribute it to old age and whiskey, but probably it is because he never struck me as an arsenal player), anyways, the guy we got from chelsea who went to Portsmouth, I would pick Diaby any day over him.

    SF: When “Bac-San” signed, he came out with the good stuff about how happy he was at joining the club but he then went further and declared that he will have no problem adapting to EPL and announced to all that people WILL be surprised by Arsenal this season, the same people who have been writing Arsenal off. I believe the other Arsenal player to come with that comment was RVP. So far he has substantiated his words, and then some. I love arrogant pricks, (also because I won’t have to hate myself) but do you think at the end of the season he will deserve an entire piece on him?

  11. TayGoon
    March 1, 2008 at 12:54 pm #

    Flamini is my player of the season as of now. Fabregas second, Hleb third, Bacary Sagna fourth, Clichy,Adebayor,Eduardo,Captain fantastic,RVP(he got us off the blocks),Rosicky, Senderos in that order. What do you guys think?

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Arsenal vs Aston Villa Team News and Friday Round Up: Taylor breaks his silence « The World of Arsenal - February 29, 2008

    […] talks about Walcott and his plans for the rest of the season and the unity of the squad. The team went bowling and then to see Eduardo – it’s like one big happy […]

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