Coventry, Cup Runs & Theo Out For…?


The transfer window is open and to be honest you would not really have noticed. It has been entirely underwhelming. For Arsenal that activity might increase with Nicklas Bendtner out for a month and the possibility of Theo Walcott joining him on the sidelines for the same period. Sanity appears to be prevailing for once with the media focussing more on the coins thrown at Walcott whilst he laid on The Emirates turf awaiting treatment than his harmless gesture, despite the attempts of former FA Chairman Bernstein to push the former agenda.

Having been stretchered off during the weekend’s decimation of Tottenham, the England international has a scan today which will influence Arsène’s thinking towards his squad or the forward line at least. Newspaper talk this morning has Mario Mandzukic’s dreams of an Arsenal future shattered; Bayern aren’t going to release him. Au contraire, they are going to offer him a new contract. It’s a familiar theme; agent plants story and new contract materialises.

Arsène is trying to manage expectations; Lewandowski was a favoured son of speculation but that was crushed when the Pole signed a pre-contract with Bayern. Wenger stamped on it to fully extinguish the myth by noting that the whole of football knew eighteen months ago that this would be the outcome. It won’t stop them looking but you sense the manager’s comments about squad size were more designed to quell ardour for a big-name signing for the sake of it than anything else. In fact, he didn’t disguise that purpose,

We are like everyone, we look out there and see what is happening. Unless you have a club in a desperate financial situation it will be difficult.

It is something many agree with but the influence of the World Cup should not be under-estimated either. No player is going to make a move which might jeopardise any plans for their own involvement in FIFA’s jamboree. Transfer windows are hugely risky for managers; there is a danger of destabilising the squad with a new player but enough research is done on targets that the impact can be assessed before the paper is offered up for signatures. As much as that is a problem, there is as much of a danger in inertia; not signing someone can be as high-risk a policy.

To me, the only glaring weakness in the squad’s depth is in the front-line but the injuries to Bendtner and Walcott should not overly influence that. We have two players for most positions and can manage in the event of a long-term injury striking or with a loss of form but I am not convinced we can if either of those eventualities occurs with Giroud. At the moment it isn’t an immediate issue with a week to go to the trip to Villa Park but the unexpected nature of his absence for the past two matches serves as a warning against the complacency which comes with his overall injury record. Anything can happen to any player in any match.

Mention of the Villa match draws attention to ticket pricing with the next week’s hosts advertising ticket-pricing structured to shift those which cannot be sold. In other words, the visit of the Premier League leaders is not enough to sell-out a fixture that would have done so in the past. The Emirates was an unusual place in this weekend’s FA Cup third round ties; it was sold out. Watching any of the highlights programmes or Sunday’s live coverage, the unavoidable conclusion reached was that few of the matches sold-out. Immediately, the bandwagon rolled with the blame pointed in the direction of the Football Association, at once harsh and accurate.

The first weekend in January has always been the traditional date for clubs in the top two divisions to enter the FA Cup but with the festive period, has the competition suffered as a result of the volume of fixtures? Nottingham Forest, for example, were playing their third home game in a fortnight; it isn’t cheap to attend matches and they will have been disappointed with a crowd that was just over half of the number who saw them beat Leeds United last weekend. Has the allure of the FA Cup dimmed so much that there is little or no allure in the very real prospect of beating a Premier League side? There will have been an impact from live television coverage but surely not to the extent of the drop in attendance suffered?  Arsenal were insulated by a North London Derby, a match which will always sell-out but hopefully the club will heed the warnings of the weekend’s other ties when Coventry roll into town for the Fourth Round and offer the match up with Cat C pricing at worst.

The draw was kind to Arsenal, a lower league side at home is as good as could have been wished for. It puts the club in a strong position to advance to the Fifth Round. The flipside to that is what was marked down as a week’s rest between two big matches will not exist but that is the price of success. Arsenal want to challenge for silverware on all fronts, the result is a crowded fixture list. That is the point of the squad system, to allow for this and whilst the FA Cup will be the lowest of the priorities, as a realistic target for silverware, it is surely higher than the Champions League at this moment in time? No disrespect to Coventry but they are less of an obstacle than Bayern Munich in winning a trophy. Before the Tottenham game, Arsène referenced last season’s disappointment against Blackburn Rovers, the feeling being he won’t repeat the mistake of that week in February when the season’s cup runs ended.

’til Tomorrow.

’til Tomorrow

79 thoughts on “Coventry, Cup Runs & Theo Out For…?

  1. Great post great weekend
    Morning yogi n all
    I am off to work drenched and soaked to the bones
    But with the win over spurs n united getting knocked out am a cheshire cat
    Worried about the injury to theo coming as it is after bendy
    But gnabry has shown enough to take the right wing
    Hopefully man of steel n all giroud will see us through jan

  2. Morning Yogi,

    A spot on take on the TW with all the nuances of what is needed, what is available, what is the likely cost and whether any of it would improve the short term chances of the team, etc etc.

    Part of me is gripped by the excitement of possible recruits and part of me is bored stiff with all the bullish*t.

  3. i really cant think past loic remy to remedy our situation,short or long term,i know he’s got the rape case hanging over his head,but football wise he is what we need when giroud is knackered or on a goal draught,and even when chasing games the guy is good playing from the left,he is quicker than most think and is good at stretching defenses,and oh yeah,only king koscielny has managed to put him in his pocket,so why not bring him on board..and maybe alvaro morata long term,madrid wont let it happen though.

  4. An interesting post.
    Yet another example of the devious working of an agent.
    Mandzukic’s likely departure from Bayern is suddenly transformed into a “Rooney” i.e. a new, enhanced contract. When will these parasites be exterminated?
    On the subject of below par attendance at the NLD, I feel that the current weather, transport problems, the fact that the game was televised free on terrestrial ITV and it was not an EPL game, all played a part in lessening live presence.

  5. Nicky

    ‘when will these parasites be exterminated?’

    The PFA should work with the owners to form a joint contracts tribunal and standardize the football players contract. This may require some lawyers to input, but gets rid of the unlicensed leaches.

    A cap should be put on footbal players salaries. Still obscene amounts of money, but on a sustainable model.

    European and North American FAs should break away from THIFA – with any others that want to follow- and set up an alternative to it, which is not responsible for the money of ‘the Jamboree’, or at least has some proper regulatory structure. All the FAs will eventually follow the money.

    Thanks for allowing me to wish and dream.

  6. The Arse,

    Laudable as your suggestion is, I suspect it would fall foul of EU Law on the grounds of anyone or all of the following:- restriction of trade, human rights, freedom of movement, blah, blah.

    It’s a good idea but it will never happen as their are too many vested interests involved. 🙁

  7. @HenryB & the Arse,
    We can but dream that the day will come when the bubble (of obscene wages) will eventually burst.

  8. Theo is out is a massive blow, 5 goals in 6 games and they have been important goals whilst he’s looked sharper in every match since his return. Serge is good, don’t get me wrong i can think of a few Prem league teams that could have him starting in front of the players they have now, but i don’t think he’ll chip in with as many goals as Theo has of late. Podolski should be stepping up to chip in, Giroud back is good along with Özil now being fit leaving Ramsey, Ox and Theo all be returning around the end of Jan so that’s a big boost for then. Bringing in a top player could disrupt the balance i suppose, but when you sign a proper talent like say Suarez, then the bedding in period is usually short given there abilities to score goals for fun, so perhaps worth a punt. Someone to challenge Giroud could mean he improves the accuracy he’s sometimes missing in his game! If i had to pick, i’d go for Martinez but i’m doubtful.

    There’s a surplus of articles saying Draxler was shown round the Emirates yesterday and will move in the summer, with our growing German continent being the sway factor in his decision. Now i know it’s not valid but i’d take him in a second as he’s a fantastic player but not for anything above 20million. It would also i presume mean no extension for Tomas Rosicky, who in my mind probably deserves one with the added intensity he gives us when he plays.

    Coventry at home is a good result for us, i think we can keep pushing! A final would be fantastic for us as i think we’ll see another few upsets in the next round. I can see City and Chelsea improving in the second half of the season, but the Barca fixtures should take a lot out of City so i’m hoping they drop a lot more points.

  9. @MLF

    I agree and if there was a striker that wouldn’t need much bedding in that is available would be Martinez. I wouldn’t mind taken a punt on Pato on a loan deal for the rest of the season as he would be a good short gap option and if he came good would be a fantastic stroke of genius. Theo’s injury is a massive massive blow no doubt and I hope that this does signal the return of Podolksi but only time will tell.

    I was reading something about the Draxler thing being completed in the summer. His signing would be a very good one no doubt as he is just as comfortable playing deep as he is playing on the wing. Not to mention he is a bigger lad at 1.87m(6’2″) if I remember correctly. Different kind of midfielder than we have currently.

  10. The Coventry draw means that we will be able to rest players and allow the likes of Gnabry to play while resting Ozil and the lot.

  11. ‘No player is going to make a move which might jeopardise any plans for their own involvement in FIFA’s jamboree.’

    but if bench ridden he will lust for a move to a top club more likely to utilise his talents…

  12. YW & C

    That was exactly my first reaction, but I think there are perhaps some (limited) exceptions? Dzeko being one – personally think he’s got a lot to give, but the system at MC and the stop-start nature to getting a run in the first team has hindered him.

    The thing in the Jan window for me is that you either pay way over the top for talent, or you take a bit of a punt (more than any other transfer!) on someone.

  13. @Damon

    Jackson Martinez, Pato or Luis Muriel for me.

    The thing with a striker like Dzeko, is the fact that while he may want to leave, Manshitty won’t sell him to us and that goes for a player like Chicharito as well.

  14. fellow gooners help me out here , season ticket is 26 games 19 prem, 7 cup games , so Coventry would be last free game , we would have to pay for Bayern Munich home ?

  15. I know it might be standard to do it, but Lewandowski releasing a statement on the official Dortmund page leaving on a free to Bayern only a year after Goetze is quite interesting because his statement is addressed directly to the fans. Dormund now understands how we feel. Just think, over the past 4 years, they have lost Lewandowski, Kagawa, Sahin(who returned but not to form yet) and Goetze.

  16. O and for those that have no clue what I’m talking about, this is what he wrote:

    “Dear BVB fans, I would like to say a few words to you. With half a year to go, there are still some goals we want to achieve together. I hope you will support me, even if some of you don’t agree with my decision! I for one will give my all for BVB!

    “Yours, Robert Lewandowski.”

  17. They should have sold lewan at the start of the season for 20mil + 1 or exchange him with real for higuain

  18. Great post yogi

    Really bummed about Theo. We need his goal scoring.

    A new striker would be great. It is almost always a mistake to read to much into one game but I am going to do it anyway since it fits my agenda. I think the spurs game is an indication that perhaps our overall game would be better served with a different type of CF who is more mobile and is actually a threat when he is more then 12 yards from goal. Other then a couple of goals early this season during his time with us nearly all of the goals that OG scores are with his head or on low crosses into the 6 yard box that pokes into the goal. We have adapted our style of play to OG’s strength and hold up ability because we have had to. There are no other options because you need to involve your lone striker in any type of attacking plan since he sits right in the middle of everything we do in the attacking end. However the problem is that OG has not really been much of a threat with his feet anywhere outside the 6 yard box so if he pulls out to 16 – 18 yards from goal or worse out to the wing, he is not a threat to take a couple of touches and move the ball to a shooting position the way someone like RVP or Suarez, Aguero or Rooney could. He has not shown any real ability to use his right foot outside of taps in the way RVP used his choclate leg. That relatively one dimensional nature of his scoring ability makes him easier to defend against which is part of the reason for the scoring drought I suspect. Teams are able to adjust defensively over time. It also means that defenders don’t have to follow him when moves away from goal which clogs up the penalty area. That’s not to mention his relative lack of pace decreases our ability to counter attack quickly. Theo is not someone who I would consider a long term solution at CF but his mobility and threat when he had the ball further from goal opens up space because the defenders have to be more concerned about him when gets the ball 25 yards from goal or out wider.

    I doubt that we will bring in another CF in the window, and if we do I hope we go after the best CF available regardless of cost. A great CF is perhaps the last piece of the puzzle that would turn us into a truly great team. IMO if we can’t find that great player then I would rather us wait until summer rather then spend a bunch of money to buy a back up. Perhaps a loan deal or someone we could buy with the coins in our pocket such as Berbatov could get us through the season.

  19. @UKGold

    I was thinking the same thing mate. Higuin would have essentially been a like for like swap. But according to Lewandowski’s agent and Dortmund, Madrid made an “immoral” offer for his services before he signed with Bayern and that was immediately rejected by both club and player.

  20. Bill

    Its the recent goal drought more than the injury to OG which has been more of a concern to me. Giroud will be back for the next game whilst it appears that Bendtner and Walcott will not be available for any of the remaining 4 games in January.
    I tend to agree with AW that January is a lousy time to bring a new player into the fold, but we should surely be trying to bring in a striker as we were so desperate to get one in at the end of the transfer window and narrowly missed out (on Demba Ba) on deadline day.
    If we fall at the final hurdle this season because our CF position let us down there is surely going to be an uproar over why we didn’t correct our summer mistake by buying a player in January.

  21. Yup. Out for 6 months.

    That is mental; he was laughing when he came off. I did my ACL some years back and I certainly was not fucking laughing.

  22. Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck!!!!!!!

    Now we really have to buy a striker or a winger type. I wouldn’t mind seeing a lineup like this now with Theo out for 6 months:


    The thing with Sagna is that he is so brilliant that moving Santi to that side will not affect him as he is use to Theo or Gnabry or even Ox drifting inside.

  23. Breaking news folks – it’s bad news for Arsenal and England. Theo Walcott has a serious cruciate ligament injury on his knee and will be out for 6 months. He will most definitely miss the rest of the season and the World Cup.

    Surely Wenger has to go out to Waitrose or Harrods for cover. The problem is whether we can get a right winger/striker or maybe just say fuck it and offer 80 million for Suarez. Rooney might be cheaper.

  24. Yea I have several friends that have done their ACL’s and none of them were laughing. Maybe the lad has a high tolerance for pain.

    I wish and hope for a speedy recovery. Really sad news tbh as he was scoring goals for fun and really did show his overall ability centrally against the Spuds. Hold up, link up, movement, work rate was all on display.

  25. I don’t think we necessarily need a right winger but most definitely need a striker. When Santi and Ozil play together they tend to swap spots anyways, so lets move Santi to the right, bring in Podolski which will make up for the goals we miss with Theo and bring in Jackson Martinez and have a real go at the title. With Gnabry showing good and Ox returning it will be massive to get Ox up to speed ASAP.

  26. Thinking about the Theo situation, I think this is actually worse for the young lad. I really hope he can be fit before may or early June so that he gets a ticket to Brazil. Capello left him out in 2010, Errickson fucked with his mind in 2006, and an injury will force him to miss 2014.

    Theo will b devastated by the thought of missing a world cup again.

    The only silver lining I see here is that he can spend time with his pregnant wife and look forward to playing a stay at home daddy.

  27. I hope Gnabry gets more pitch time now especially in the EPL against the teams lower than 6th. He provides genuine width and with Sagna, Rosicky, Arteta and the other older players guiding him, I think it’s a great opportunity. The Ox will also have a great chance to stamp his authority on the team.

    I’ve had the view that the Ox has better all round control than Theo but with the same devastating pace. Don’t get me wrong, Theo has improved significantly and is a constant threat to the opposition. The Ox brings something different that I think we also need – I’m not trying to compare the 2 pound for pound.

    I really do feel bad for Theo though, Brazil could have been where he stamps his authority on the world stage.

  28. @Darius

    You do bring up a good point about him and the World Cup. The thing I think it will do is make him hungrier and drive him to not only get back but get back stronger. He seems a player that when his back is against the wall he gets better. So I think we could very well see the best of Theo post injury.

    I hope he comes back firiing like Rossi (minus hurting his knee again). Taken the EPL by storm and scoring for fun. Lets also see how the rest of the lads get on about it.

  29. That is extremely bad news about Theo, I really feel for the lad. It’s going to put some pressure on AW, I think he will now have to dip into the transfer market. Not much choice really, if Giroud gets another injury over the next month or so, we would be truly fucked if we don’t have a back up!

  30. @Darius

    I think Ox is a better all around player but Theo’s pace, quickness but more importantly his movement/runs off the ball and his finishing is “better” than the Ox. I think though they are 2 different players, Ox is more of a classic winger in the sense of driving with the ball at his feet very direct getting deadly crosses into the box; where Theo is a finisher and while his technique has gotten drastically and dramatically better, he is a finisher whose pace and movement are absolutely top class and his finishing is superb but can still create when he needs to.

  31. Arsenal confirmed on their website: “Theo will have surgery in London in the near future and is expected to be out for at least six months, therefore missing the remainder of the season and the World Cup in Brazil in the summer.

  32. Darius.

    What you say about Ox having more technical skill may be true but Theo’s finishing ability sets him apart. Ox has only scored a couple of goals in his entire career. Theo’s nose for goal and scoring threat from the wing more then makes up for all the things he does not do as well, especially for our team which has a real lack of clinical finishers. All the technical skill and dribbling ability in the world are not very useful is there is no one to actually score the goal. We will need to keep a clean sheet just about every game to win from now on I suspect. That’s possible given the quality of our defense but it’s asking a lot. This is a huge loss for us

  33. Devastating news for Theo & the club. He’s been picking up form gradually & his all round game was superb on Saturday.

    If Arsene had any doubts about buying a forward in Jan this news surely removes them. Injuries are part of the squad game but we’re really short up front now.

    If I can see a glimmer of a silver lining it’s remembering the same thing happening to an at the peak of his game Robert Pires back in early 2002 …& we went on to win the double.

  34. @C – You’re right I think about the anger and hunger he will come back with. Hopefully Mel and the baby will keep his hands full and keep him mentally stable during the injury period.

    Right about now though – Jackson <Martinez looks like a plot right about now.

    On other matters, a very interesting article in the Daily heil about Manchester United's meltdown. Makes me really think how much of a selfish bastard Fergie was. He must have known the itanic was sinking and he left Moyes holding the baby. All Moyes can do right now is just re-arrange the deck chairs on the Titanic.

    For sure, they're struggling to make the top four and that's a guarantee that both Rooney and Van Persie will be sure to leave United for greener pastures.

  35. @Bill and C – I agree with that. I’m really trying to make some lemonade here. As I mentioned, Theo is a nightmare to any defence for the reasons stated, but not having him means we can bitch and moan to the injury gods, or look positively at what we have.

    To be honest, there’s something about Gnabry. He’s not as beautiful as Mary, but there’s an X-Factor about him. I do hope he gets more pitch time in the FA cup and in the EPL. Even if he comes on as an impact sub, Gnabry and Podolski give us genuine width and goal threat from both flanks.

  36. Speaking of deadwood, I’m told Chamakh is doing really well at Palace. His doing a Giroud for them and actually working out up front. Don’t you just wish he was on loan.

  37. Awful news. Poor Theo. Bad news for us too. I am sure the whole team feels a bit low. Theo was our top scorer and provides a unique threat of pace with finishing ability. Hope we find someone good and can bring him in while Gnabry, Ox ad Podoski will need to impress.

  38. Darius.

    The only real lemonade that I can think of is that this has to force AW to put Podolski in the regular starting 11 whether he wants to or not. Hopefully Podolski can prove that C has been right about him all along.

  39. Damn i feel so sad for him.

    Just has to make sure it doesn’t get to him, this sort of thing can absolutely destroy a person’s confidence.

    This is a huge blow to Arsenal, we need a replacement.

    Damn i actually feel so sad, he looked fine when he was getting off the pitch.

    Ahh well shit happens.

  40. @Darius

    I agree, Jackson Martinez is the right move and would terrorize the EPL!!!!

    What about moving Santi to the right wing and bringing Podolski on the left flank. He might not have Theo’s electric pace but still has pace, movement and most importantly that clinicaliness that makes him absolutely devastating and a danger from 30 yards and in. Also we don’t want to put to much on Gnabry as he is not only young but just breaking into the team. Don’t mind using him against the mid to lower table sides, but lets cool the need for him against the bigger sides.

    Chamakh is doing well at Palace. I think he has scored something like 4 in the last 5-6 matches. Not only that but his link up play and work rate are what endeared him to Gooners when he was getting a proper run out when he first showed up at Arsenal.

  41. Cbob

    “Very interesting, Bill.

    I was starting to think something similar,”

    I have often accused others before of making too much out of one game and over thinking and over analyzing but that all makes sense to me.

    Big question now is who will step up their game and compensate for the loss of Theo’s finishing. I don’t think we can expect anyone to go on a scoring run the way Ramsey did early this season. Cazorla scored in double figures last season and I suspect he will be in one of the wing spots in every game. He needs to step up big time. Certainly on most teams the striker would be the logical answer for more scoring just because of the position he plays.

    Will this actually force Arsene’s hand and get to spend big on a goal scorer in January? Completely bummed about Theo.

  42. Weeping like a child about Theo and our chances for silverware this season.

    I always thought his role in the team was underrated. We lack pace without him and much easier to play against.

    Interesting what Arsene will do now. Gnarby will get a run of game, that’s for sure.

    Signings? I still doubt there will be any.

  43. But was arsenal not doing very well before Theo came back from the previous injury? Please we should not underrate Park. He could be the magic saviour.

  44. Thoughts with Theo today, he must be devastated especially after the last bloody World Jamboree. He looked ready to go take on the striker position for us.

    Time to go and get that striker who has the skill to control the ball, beat the man and bang it in. Game after game after game.

    Hard to come by, but the only other alternative is a Remy or someone who will just be glad to move to a big team and see if he can perform.

  45. With Theo out for six months, we could also do with someone who can drop to flanks if need be.

    Admittedly we have Ox coming back, Gnabry is now in contention and Posdolski is still under utilized, but rather than replicate Giroud (which Bendtner does and whom will return in a month), I favour someone up top who brings a slightly different skill set.

    Two options I feel should be considered is :

    1) Michu. he won’t cost much (10m) and should be able to re-role to midfield (in lieu of Rosicky despite his performances, he isn’t getting younger), and if we find a top target with longer term potential up front in the summer. The Spaniard will link up well with santi, has no compromise in height, is intelligent on the ball and is more mobile + has good technical ability.

    2) Pato. provided IF his attitude and focus is there, the Brazillian may relish the bigger stage to work toward contention for the Selecao in the summer. not at the level he was some years back, he is still scoring goals aplenty in Brazil where he remains unpopular. He brings plenty of pace but can also function as a fox in the box. If we consider who wenger was chasing in the summer (Higuain and Suarez), Pato is a similar sort of player albeit one who has lost his way a little. Still only 24, he could well benefit from Wenger’s tutelage and rehabilitate his career as we have now done successfully for Per and Podolski.

    A loan with a first option to buy would represent the least risk for us whilst affording Corinthians a potential shop window.

    + both these players will not be cup tied and these deals can be concluded with relatively less fuss on account that neither are exactly the top of any big team’s list at the moment.

    This window is fraught with complications not least because every agent will likely play games and not sell the asset prior to the world cup (unless that striker will not feature in the competition)

    Also there are several big clubs still out there for a signature or two up front so any Big name striker will likely have his price driven up on account of both supply and demand.

    Should we sign a good striker (but not a top class one), it will bear on our ability to sign a truly top end player if he came available in the summer. Should we go for an older player say the oft touted Berbatov, he will likely want a permanent move which will saddle us with his high wages. Most of the other names bandied about are cup tied and will not help out in CL where we could do with the experience of someone like say Pato.

    So the permutations are difficult to navigate. Let’s see what Wenger can pull out of the bag. Me thinks he will be more than tempted to dip in on account of our injuries and our position in the league at the moment (+ that tricky game with Bayern), but I don’t think he will spend big this time.

  46. I said yesterday that the front line could look like this.

    Gnabry …….Podo………Cazorla

    The coventry draw is a good time to test it and after that we are not too tested until the Puddle match in a few weeks. Cazorla or any of the central players can cover the left side. They have been doing it all season both sides, I think get the wingers in.

  47. @gunnerlife

    We were but that was with a hot Giroud and Ramsey scoring for fun. Once they struggled to score, we really didn’t have any player that was capable of going and just scoring not to mention the amount of space that he creates with his movement and ability to get behind a back 4. We were good without Theo but with him we were very good. I do think that Podolski can make up for Theo’s loss both in his movement and his cultured left foot(both scoring goals and creating them) but we will have to see what Arsene does next. It will be really tough to play 5 midfielders and a striker if said striker is going through a bit of a drought.

  48. Park.

    I wish I could take half his wages to do his job polishing our bench for the rest of the season. he can be free to take the other half, go off to make some more dosh playing at a lesser club meanwhile, it’s a win-win. I’ll even funnel half of my half back to the club so they get something back and can use it to fund a new young player.

    Me? I’ll just park myself on the bench and dutifully turn up for training with the lads, that quarter of the salary they spend on him will be more than sufficient!


  49. @the arse

    The best situation would be for Podolski to take over the left and have Santi on the right or whatever midfield player on the right not the left.

  50. Really gutted for Walcott as his goal scoring record last season together with how he was shaping up in this one would have ensured he was a shoe in for the World Cup squad.
    I was amazed that Park was actually on the bench for Saturday’s game and wondered if AW might give him a few minutes, but I suspect the injury to TV5 put paid to that.

    The problem now is that everybody knows we are likely to be shopping for a striker in a sellers market. We now have striker line-up which comprises OG, our only experienced out and out CF, Podolski, who prefers to play from a left sided position or as part of a 2 man strike force, Bendtner, who is trying to rediscover himself and is currently injured, Sanogo, who is young, inexperienced and injury prone, and Park, who has played about 3 minutes since signing for the club and appears have been bought off the back of a youtube clip with the manager thinking afterwards, “what the fuck have I done?”. I know it is not as simple as that because of the talent that plays around our striker, but another injury to any of that group of players and we are likely to be in trouble.

  51. Bad news about Theo, i think Ox and Gnabry will have to fight it out for the RW spot but perhaps this might convince Wenger to make a Jan acquisition to bulk out the team a bit. Another injury or two and we put all our good work to waste! Summer could be an interesting time for us though as i can see us making a few signings.

    Ox injury frustrated me the most as i thought this would be his season to show the fans what he can do so was so unfortunate to get injured when he did, hope he shows what he can do!

  52. Really upset about Theo. Couldn’t have happened at a worse time for him… although a new baby might take his mind off it. I suppose it could have happened at a worse time for the team – Jan 31st!… Although it might not make any difference…..

    As to our need inflating prices – well that won’t be the case when there’s a (real) release clause….. But are such things real – or mythical beings like the Clause with a big white beard?

  53. Bloody hell hust caught up with the news what s blow to theo and the team
    Absolute sickener
    Wot to do
    Am sure wenger has names and possibilities but we a natural replacement un joel Campbell why did we not put a recall clause in the loan?

  54. Mertesacker message for poor Theo

    I hope the team aren’t on a downer at this news. We need a stopgap experienced striker, if a top quality one isn’t available in January. We have long term injuries every season; shouldn’t be scratching around desperately for someone in Jan anyway. All that Suarez sideshow in the summer was very costly.
    Just hope Theo will get the very best of treatment as his pace and confidence are going to take a while to come back after this. Unbelievably disappointing news.

  55. I’m Gutted for Theo more then for us, we will be alright someone will step in. its just another missed world cup for him. .really feel for him…the only silver lining would be when we get sent home in brazil he will not get any abuse or blame.

  56. MUST READ ON OUR YOUTH. I know sometimes I do go on about:

    Having just finished watching the Arsenal Youth FA Cup, I am left absolutely speechless after watching our young Crowley absolutely boss a match in a peformance that was one for the ages. It wasnt just his 2 goals and 4 assists that he racked up, but it was the way that he looked as though he was a man amongst boys. Tireless work and pinpoint passing mixed with a joy for wanting to do well in the Arsenal shirt led to a magnificent performance. Literally ran the match as our Youth trounced Petersborough United. If any of you get a chance to watch either the replay or highlights, please do and you will understand the talent and why people like me and MA bang on about some of the youth that we have and how talented they are. Akpom picked up a hattrick before the hour mark and the passes from Crowley were absolutely a joy to watch.

  57. of course and now he can witness the most happiest feeling he will ever get in life…….the birth of his child…blessing maybe….

  58. Our biggest goal threat misses the rest of the season. We already needed another striker………..should be a no-brainer.

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