Arsenal vs Wolves preview + (un)signed contracts

Arsenal face Wolves tomorrow night off the back of an extremely good week.

The boys’ confidence will be high after dumping Liverpool out of the Carling Cup, smashing Tottenham in the North London Derby and putting four past Alkmaar to all but secure qualification. And while newly-promoted Wolves have had a very respectable start to the season for a newly-promoted side, I really can’t see anything but an Arsenal win if our boys turn up motivated and ready to play.

I expect there to be a little bit of rotation after the midweek game. Eduardo is a good chance to come into the side after being used off the bench against both Spurs and Alkmaar while Bacary Sagna should return at right-back in place of Emmanuel Eboue.

Samir Nasri should keep his spot after a sharp midweek performance while I’d suggest we could see Aaron Ramsey brought into the side, perhaps at the expense of Abou Diaby. Tomas Rosicky is fit again so we could see him from the start however I suspect both Andrey Arshavin and Robin van Persie will start their third game in a row. Meanwhile Manuel Almunia should continue in goals.

Arsene Wenger has admitted that he won’t be rotating the central defenders anytime soon so we can count both Thomas Vermaelen and William Gallas in, while the same can be said about Cesc Fabregas. The captain’s performance against Alkmaar was full of confidence and conviction and given he was pulled off with a decent amount of time remaining in the game I think it’s safe to say he’ll be leading out the boys on Saturday afternoon.

This game is certainly a potential banana skin considering the relative mystery surrounding last year’s Championship winners. I do fancy us to go to Wolves and get a few goals however, and the presence of our solid defensive of Vermaelen, Gallas and Alex Song should ensure we avoid a potentially embarassing result if things get a little mucky.

Turning attention away from the Wolves game and there was some excellent news today regarding the future of Carling Cup hero Fran Merida. According to the manager the young Spaniard has verbally agreed a new contract with the club (if not signed it) despite the recent rumours that Atletico Madrid were hoping to lure him back to Spain.

Meanwhile Bordeaux target Marouane Chamakh has admitted he is not yet ready to sign an extension to his contract, meaning he remains a real possibility to leave the club and perhaps join us in January. He scored a nice goal against Bayern Munich midweek and although it will very much be a game of wait and see it’s relatively interesting news nonetheless.

Right, that’s it. Enjoy your Friday and be sure to check out this week’s Arsenal FC Weekly podcast guest Arseblogger on his own show if you get the chance.

PS. I’ll be working on some blog design stuff over the weekend so if the blog happens to go weird from time to time, please don’t despair! Cheers for your patience.

Have your say on Arsenal’s trip to Wolves or other contract-related stuff by leaving a comment.

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18 Responses to “Arsenal vs Wolves preview + (un)signed contracts”

  1. Tivosky
    November 6, 2009 at 6:35 pm #

    Its gunner be a tricky game hweva i xpect arsenal to win. Wolves football will be direct and they will prefer to sit back 2 hit some counter coupled with proper utilization of set pieces. But arsenal can now deal with that in verminator-gallas partnership.

  2. Moses Osime
    November 6, 2009 at 6:49 pm #

    The game will be a tough one for Arsenal considering the fact that Wolves have rested a week while Arsenal were involved in midweek action.But nonetheless i see Arsenal thumping Wolves 3-1

  3. shambogunner
    November 6, 2009 at 7:01 pm #

    @andy,
    yesterdays blog was great man,thats why i come on here every time i get a chance…..great stuff lads
    like iv said yesterday im done critisisin almunia,iv made my point and what wil be wil be at this stage and i feel it better to channel my energy into positivity….on the off chance our collective karmas may rub off on his performances and that please god he manages to just get the basics right
    as far as diabys concerned we really cant keep poundin the guy, he did wel the other night so at least wait until hes underperformed again to criticise,i doubt ul hav to wait long to be fair,hes so inconsistent
    wolves wont be easy,especially with the dangerous doyle and ebanks-blake up front,you can be sure these 2 will set the tone for a high pressure hard working team effort but i just cant see us being troubled by any1 in our current mood….a 1-0 would be as good to me as a 5-0..sundays result will be win win,ideally id like to see utd win it because for me they are getting away with murder at the mo and in my opinion their luck wil run out soon and they wil be exposed…3rd place for them this year i feel
    andy what nationality is arseblogger

  4. Damn_Gallas
    November 6, 2009 at 7:28 pm #

    We must not be too cocky just because it is wolves. We must not underestimate them.

    I expect them to park the whole team in their own halves and frustrate us with some hardcore plays. Also they would probably try to pressure us and prevent us from playing the fluent game we are used too.

    Lets not underestimate them just because they are previously from the championship league.

    Remember last season against Hull City? We underestimated them and we lost. This time round I expect the team to go out and finish teams off, having had their lessons learnt from the west ham and az alkmaar games.

    I would say arsenal to win at least 2-0, or 3-0, though I would love to see more goals scored!!!

  5. I mole
    November 6, 2009 at 7:46 pm #

    Wolves are known 2 be a strong nut 2 crack but nevertheless i see arsenal thumping over them in d match. Gud luck arsenal & more power 2 ur elbow ‘andy ‘ 4 ur nice post yesterday.

  6. walter
    November 6, 2009 at 8:15 pm #

    Money is the supreme commodity that is the object of the desires of the 6.8 billion people of the world today, irrespective of the quantity of wealth that one has amassed. Money is able to acquire the vast majority of life’s necessities and comfortable luxuries, yet the one commodity that it cannot buy is time. The importance of time is appreciated when one realises that the purpose of life reaches beyond affluence, and that a finite number of days exist for us to achieve what is required in this life. The true value of this human birth is revealed by a Guru who is concerned about spiritual wellbeing regardless of the financial prosperity of the aspirant…

    so come on merida SIGN THE CONTRACT…

  7. marbellaron
    November 6, 2009 at 8:50 pm #

    Against my own expectations,I feel this team is nearing the side of two years ago.The philosophy of if we concede one we will score two, in principle sounds great,but may not be always possible.personally,I find our football a joy to watch and will continue to do so,regardless if we win anything or not.My concerns are the following. Song,arguably our most improved player is on 4 yellow cards and we should ensure that he doesn’t miss the Chelsea game.The partnership of Gallas and Vermaelen is outstanding, yet one cannot expect them to play in every game, and it is in that are we are weak in cover.With regards to the full back situation,perm any two from four, that is Clichy,Gibbs,Eboue,Sagna and even Traore they are attacking wing backs and are always at risk on the quick counter attack by the opposition.Almunia still doesn’t impress me and his command of his area is still indecisive and he is still vulnerable to letting goals in,especially to his near post.Wenger being Wenger,I doubt he will buy in January,and it is a pity we didn’t go for Given months before he joined City,when he was available for a comparatively cheap price.This new diamond shape or 4-1-4-1 is working well and we have an abundance of quality to interchange,which bemuses the opposition more often than not.We have every chance this year,and we are also being helped by the fact that the other so called big four sides are showing their vulnerability.A couple of decent signings,not squad players in January,and hopefully we are in the mix.

  8. Malachy onah
    November 6, 2009 at 8:59 pm #

    It might look tough but i see arsenal beat them 3 zero….

  9. C-Bass
    November 6, 2009 at 11:08 pm #

    I hope Rambo gets the start in lieu of Peanut Head Diaby. Let’s see how he does. The time is now to evaluate who will replace Song during the ACN.

  10. Bruce in Atlanta
    November 6, 2009 at 11:54 pm #

    I think the league is shaping up as Chelski vs Arsenal. When and how long is the ACN tournament? Hopefully, that will cripple Chelsea. Big question: Who fills Song’s role? Denilson?

  11. Filipino Dan
    November 7, 2009 at 1:51 am #

    I see Vieira has been left out of France squad WC Qualifier due to his lack of action at Inter.

    Wonder if we could bring him in for a one/ two month loan in Jan to cover for Song??? It would give him games to impress for World Cup (if they get there).

    We need someone for that role…

  12. PapiJ
    November 7, 2009 at 2:21 am #

    great one, Blogger.
    Well, AW being who he is will remind the boys of what Hull did last season b4 this match & i can imagine what dat would be. Overall, I see the Gunners gunning the wolves for dinner come 2moro. Diaby is improving,lets c how he goes in the nxt few matches…Song must be watched so as not to miss our match against Chelski. Give or take, these boys are nearing the compelte product and come Dec, I see them unleashing their venom on the other teams…..February will be a deciding moment for us considering the number of competitions we are in……

  13. GetGunMN
    November 7, 2009 at 3:06 am #

    Do you guys really think Viera has the legs to the speed of the premier league? The technical ability is there for sure, but he couldn’t even hold a first team spot at Inter in Series A where the games are technical and slower. I’m certainly willing to give Diaby the benefit of the dought. Who else is there in Song’s role? Denilson is out. Does anyone know when he returns to fitness?

  14. Medeski
    November 7, 2009 at 4:13 am #

    What’s the word on Vela? He is a class player and a great finisher. Is he injured? I keep looking for him to play, especially in the Carling Cup, but he is nowhere to be found.

  15. GetGunMN
    November 7, 2009 at 6:10 am #

    @Medeski

    Yes, Vela is injured and did not play in the Carling Cup last game. I don’t know the extent of his injury.

  16. guyfrmars
    November 7, 2009 at 9:44 am #

    i read an interesting article few days back. cant remember from where but Tony Addams mentioned he asked Wenger on the exact nature of our formation.

    He revealed it to be 4-1-4-1. Diamond formation

    Defensive wise we’re all set. Our wingers interchange alot, VP is the target man and Song plays the defensive midfielder role. Last season, one of the critism of Cesc was he looked lethargic, tired and not scoring as he did last season.most of us pointed out Euro as the main reason but interestingly, it may be due to him having to track back defensively to help out Song. Now with Song coming of age, he no longer tracks back that much hence more goals are scored.

    This brings us to Diaby. Aside from Nasri & Rambo he’s the only one who can play defensive.Nasri just came back from a broken leg and Rambo, he hasnt put himself up for contention esp after that challenge (or the lack of) against Lens (AZ).He’s showed defensive naivety and led to Lens scoring the goal.

    Maybe thats why Diaby is playing when there are alot more creative options on the bench.

    What do u guys think?

  17. Steve-O
    November 7, 2009 at 11:07 am #

    @Andy, thanks for letting us know about the exciting news of Fran Merida verbally agreeing to a contract extension. I thought his strike in the Carling Cup was all class and you could see the delight on Cesc’s face from the stands. I bet Cesc will be taking him under his wing and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him break into the first team by the end of next season.
    As someone mentioned in a previous blog, Arsenal’s away record isn’t great in the league this season so they need to play clinically right to the final whisle. Go Gunners!

  18. dennis
    November 7, 2009 at 12:03 pm #

    @ guyfrmrs- Ramsey was in now way responsible for lens scoring. It was a weak challenge, i agree, but he had tracked back to defend. Where were the defenders? Gibbs lay on the deck appearing to be hurt…. Ramsey did well to put him under pressure. Almunia should have done his job. It appeared as though he just lost interest in keeping an eye on the scorer.

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