I’m not even going to apologise for the lack of posts of late because it’s been happening all too often. What I will say though is that I f$%#*g hate my computer at the moment and I’m doing something to rectify that. Hopefully I will have a new one by next week but in the meantime you’ll have to bare with me.
It’s only appropriate that I firstly touch on everything that’s been going on during the week before I preview the Champions League away clash against Porto. It’s been a busy week and there’s a bit to get through so I’ll try to keep it short. Indeed, I’m going to do short little paragraphs with headers about the topic I’m going to speak about (ala Arsenal Shorts).
Wrigglin’ past Wigan
A deserved if nervy 1-0 win. Johan Djourou was the star of the show with another classy display at the back while Emmanuel Adebayor got the plaudits for a well-taken goal of the sort that he is often criticised for missing. Denilson worked hard on the right while Alex Song put in another decent performance alongside Cesc Fabregas in the middle. It was a nervy thing towards the end as we did out best to implode (see below) but in the end we got the three points that were required to keep up with the leaders.
Yet another fascinating incident in a rather, er, fascinating season for Arsenal. In short (and I mean in short, I could go on forever about this!) I thought the booing and jeering of Emmanuel Eboue was an horrendous performance by the Arsenal fans. There is nothing to be gained by booing our own play and love him or hate him I think the treatment of Eboue was shocking. I can understand the frustrations with his admittedly horrible performance but at the end of the day if fans can stay silent for 70 minutes and then boo their own club’s player then it’s a bit of a worry.
Ro-sick-y’s broken hammy
The word from the manager is that Tomas Rosicky will only be returning to action in March at the very earliest. It’s extremely disappointing news given that he has already been out for almost 12 months and suggests that the club nor the player are any closer to finding a solution for his dodgy hamstrings. And as good a player as Rosicky is – and he is very, very good – I think this news means Arsene Wenger needs to seriously consider bringing in a new player to replace him when the transfer window.
That about does it so I’ll move on to the Porto game now.
The simple equation for tonight is that if Arsenal draw or win in Portugal then they will finish top of their group. Unfortunately while the equation might be simple the task certainly isn’t, and it’s been made even moreso by a couple of new injuries to the squad and the manager’s decision to rest a few key players. When asked about the availability of the players Wenger replied:
“Bacary Sagna has the flu and Gael Clichy has a hamstring, he has a little chance of playing on Saturday. Kolo Toure has a recurrence of his calf injury, he should not be long but it was not enough to play. Cesc is a doubt for Saturday, he got a kick on his knee on Saturday. Samir Nasri is definitely out for Saturday, he will be out for two or three weeks. Robin van Persie has been left behind. He will be OK for Saturday, he has a little stiffness in his thigh. Emmanuel Adebayor is rested.”
The good news is that William Gallas and Abou Diaby is back which means the absence of Kolo Toure and Cesc Fabregas are largely accounted for. The unavailability of Sagna and Clichy means that boo-boy Eboue will start at right-back while Kieran Gibbs could start on the left, which is interesting. I’m not even going to try and guess the midfield but I suspect the manager might go with Nicklas Bendtner and Carlos Vela together up front. Usually Wenger would play a 4-5-1 in these sort of games but with an extreme lack of wide players at the moment (16-year-old Jack Wilshere is the only genuine winger in the squad) I think he’ll go with a narrow four-man midfield and two up top.
As I said before we need to get a draw out of this match to win the group and despite the absence of some key men I’m hopeful that we can do it. Whether we do or not will be another matter entirely but it will be interesting to see how the likes of Ramsey, Gibbs and Vela handle the pressure if they are called upon by the manager.
Anyway that’s it for today. I’m hoping to be back tomorrow but I’m reluctanct to make any promises given the unreliable nature of my computer. Fingers crossed I am and fingers crossed the boys get the desired result against Porto.
Have a great day.
Have your say on Wigan, Eboue, Rosicky or Porto by leaving a comment.