It’s Blackburn on Monday night in the second last game of the Premier League season.
We need a point in our last two games to guarantee third place. We’ll hear the team news over the next day or so but in my opinion if Alex Song is present in the starting team then we will get that point at Ewood Park.
If last weekend’s 0-0 draw with Manchester City is any indication then this could be a boring game. Both sides have little to play for, Blackburn are hardly an excitement machine at the best of times while we are of course missing many key players.
In saying that I do hope the boys put on a show, if only for the small contingent of Gooners heading north on a Monday night to cheer the boys on. One of those will by my brother Patrick who just arrived in England last week and is making the trip to Ewood Park for his first ever Arsenal experience.
6-5 would do nicely for him, I should think.
Away from the Blackburn game and Arsene Wenger has been speaking about this season’s defensive performance, in the process hinting as his plans for the next.
The manager has stated that despite our excellent goalscoring record we have conceded far too many at the wrong end this season, a sentiment that would be shared by nearly every Arsenal supporter. He also stated that should William Gallas not extend his contract this season, he will sign a new centre-back. He touched on the Sol Campbell and Mikael Silvestre situations and indicated that while the Frenchman is likely to finish up his contract with the club, if Campbell goes he will also need to be replaced.
In an ideal world I would like to see both Gallas and Campbell stay, the first-choice partnership of Gallas and Thomas Vermaelen continued with Johan Djourou giving an extra season to recover fully from his injury and gradually move to the first-choice position. Should Gallas go then I feel we will need to sign a player of starting team quality, who will give Djourou competition for the second starting position but also has enough experience to make up for the outgoing Gallas.
Just a quick one on Djourou: he is a player that I was expecting to break through in a big way this season but for obvious reasons he hasn’t been able to do that. I think people have forgotten just a bit about what he is capable of bringing to the team with his height and calmness on the ball and if he can steer clear of injury next season then he has the ability to form a complimentary partnership with the shorter, more aggressive Vermaelen.
I am extremely excited to see how things go for next season, just as I was at the start of this season before he damaged his knee.
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