Category Archives: mertescielny

Important WBA win; we must buy a defensive midfielder

Danny Welbeck Olivier Giroud

That was a big win for us yesterday. WBA made it difficult for Arsenal at the end, but a goal from Welbz was enough to secure an important 3 points and push us a little further up the Premier League table. All in all, that was a pretty good week. A 2-0 home win against Borussia Dortmund was of course the highlight. However, we’ve had the additional setback of further injuries. Jack Wilshere had to have surgery and will miss three months of action. Mikel Arteta picked up a knock. Yesterday, Nacho Monreal had to come off for Gibbs and also it is possible the Ox might miss a game or two. I know many people are questioning our medical team and training, but I think it’s really bad luck. I think a lot of it is to do with the types of players Arsene Wenger recruits. Buying players like Yaya Sanogo, Thomas Eisfeld and Abou Diaby, young players with certain question marks over their fitness, shows Arsene Wenger tends to take a bit of a risk when purchasing players.
Anyway, we now move on to our next game. Six points from our last two games is a big boost for the team.
In terms of yesterday’s performance against West Brom, it was crucial having Laurent Koscielny back in the side. He and Per Mertesacker really complement each other well at the back and it’s good to have our two recognised players back at the heart of defence. I know people were asking why we sold Thomas Vermaelen, but I think it is obvious that Calum Chambers could end up being a centre back and the Belgian’s replacement. By the way, Vermaelen is out until April next year through injury and hasn’t yet played a game for Barca…
Aaron Ramsey is having a worrying spell of form recently. I know I’m not the only one who transferred him out of their fantasy team more than a month ago. Yesterday was the same. He’s not making his usua runs into the box and he doesn’t track back efficiently enough. Good performances on the whole came from Danny Welbeck, Olivier Giroud did his thing pretty well, Santi Cazorla got stuck in to continue his great performance after the Dortmund game and at the back pretty good too. Martinez seems a decent backup for us in goal, but I can’t imagine he’ll keep the number 1 jersey for long. I want to see Ospina in between the sticks as soon as possible.
On to the January transfer window. One thing I’ve noticed from all top European sides such as Real Madrid and Bayern Munich is that their formation seems to all have a similar setup.
Take Bayern for example: Lewandowski up front, has three men behind him at all times. Robben, Ribery and Muller. Goetze can sit behind those four. Bayern then sit an anchorman behind those 5. Xabi Alonso. Or even Bastian Schweinsteiger.
Real Madrid have Benzema up top, Ronaldo playing loose behind him; Rodriguez and Bale on the flanks. Behind that, Toni Kroos sits in the middle of midfield. Behind him? an anchorman. Sami Khedira.

Let’s look at Arsenal’s formation. You can easily put Olivier Giroud up front and he’ll do a job. On the flanks, you can choose your pick between Welbeck, Walcott, Cazorla, Podolski, Sanchez. Behind him, I’d like to see us play Ramsey in that Kroos/Goetze role. But where is our anchorman? We’re currently playing Arteta alongside a Ramsey/Wilshere combo. That’s not really doing the job. Arteta tries to play the water carrier alongside those players, but he’s not quick enough, not strong enough and not a defensive midfielder. I think in January Arsene Wenger needs to buy a central defensive midfielder. Who would I like to see? It’s difficult to say because I don’t know who is on the market. Who do I like? Well, Matic at Chelsea is the type of player I think we need. We could’ve had Luiz Gustavo, we turned him down. We chased Xabi Alonso for years, he’s at Bayern now. We’re apparently chasing Sami Khedira. Not sure he’ll join us, though.
Personally, I think Arturo Vidal is the best in the world. Maybe with the Chilean connection of Alexis Sanchez at the club, we have a chance?
In terms of market availability, it is clear there is one man who Arsenal should sign. He’s French, he plays at Southampton, with whom we have an excellent relationship… Morgan Schneiderlin.
But the price wouldn’t come cheap… but he did want to leave for Spurs last summer, so maybe we have a chance.

After the international break Arsenal need to pick up where they left off

LaurentKoscielnyredcard

Happy Sunday folks – so the international results this week have been very interesting indeed. The most interesting of all has to be France slumping to 2-0 defeat to Ukraine in the World Cup qualification playoff. In my opinion, this could be one of the biggest upsets in qualification history… it’s going to be difficult for the French to come back. I was having a look at their team and I was very surprised by Didier Deschamps’ starting lineup choices. For example, how can you leave out Bacary Sagna and play Mathieu Debuchy instead? Even stranger, why on earth would you pull in an out of form Nasri ahead of someone like Valbuena? Very interesting. Anyway, we expect changes for the next leg. I’d not doubt France coming back into the tie, and Ukraine need to make sure that they defend strong for the whole game otherwise they could find themselves well out of the picture.

As for other games, well not much to say really. Chile absolutely spanked England at Wembley and even more proof that Roy Hodgson is just not the man to carry this team forward for the future. I was immediately surprised just how bad England were, but then again if you persist in your team selection that includes the likes of Frank Lampard then you’re destined for trouble. Expect a very rapid exit from the tournament in Brazil, don’t forget England are not even seeded.

As for Arsenal news, not much in the way of gossip today actually. Blaise Matuidi’s contract at PSG is expiring next summer and it seems that Chelsea and City are leading the way. I’d actually not discount us from the race to sign the midfielder. Mathieu Flamini is a great player but can we expect another season of quality out of him? Hard to say. Matuidi is what we need. He has drive, power and an excellent stopper of the ball… and he’s French. I’d say we’re in the race.

Elsewhere, Bendtner has been bleating on about his future again. I’d expect to see the Great Dane disappear out the exit door come January as we pursue our next striking transfer target.

In other news, we’ve also been linked with a transfer for Kurt Zouma again. This really excites me. He’s the best defender in Ligue 1 and he’s young, let’s say we actually do let Vermaelen leave you aren’t going to find a better backup for Mertescielny. Speaking of which, Laurent Koscielny also picked up a red card in the international game, which rules him out for the return leg in France . The centre back loves to get a red card or four every season, can’t doubt his commitment. At least he’s got another one for the national side and not domestic and that means one less player that won’t be on the injury table after the international period.

Anyway – have an excellent weekend guys and thanks for reading!

Would a Man Utd win ensure the greatest week of results in our history?

mertescielny

Morning folks. I’ve woken up with one heck of a hangover today so I’ll keep this short and sweet.

So it’s Manchester United away on Sunday in what will probably be our toughest game of the season so far. On the back of a win in Dortmund and a great three points against Liverpool last weekend, I am sure the vast majority of Arsenal fans are happy enough with just the two wins out of three… but my oh my a win would be one heck of a way to wrap up a tricky week.

With that in mind, I thought a bit more about the last 15 years of Arsenal history and whether or not we’d ever had a week of such good results, I couldn’t remember one. Sure there were great weeks such as the ones when we were winning league titles, FA Cup’s, and so on… but I can’t remember a tougher three games in a week and to top it all off… we’re so close to winning all 3. So in my opinion, a win would wrap up the greatest week I can remember, in terms of results at least.

The team will probably be very similar to the one that we fielded against Dortmund. That’ll be Mertescielny in the middle with Sagna and Gibbs either side, and a diamond quintet of Arteta, Ramsey and Rosicky with Ozil, Cazorla and Giroud the forward threat. I’d like to highlight the performance of Rosicky against his former club this week – simply outstanding. For a player who suffered so much through injuries so far in his career, the veteran is starting to prove a very useful player for us. I’d actually prefer to play Rosicky instead of Wilshere against United, simply for the way Rosicky brings the ball out of midfield. We need to be rapid in our counter attacks in this game.

One player we will sorely miss is Flamini. We’d ideally like that defensive strength but Arteta can keep up a good week in place of the Frenchman.

I had a good look through the fixture list and the only other game I thought would be interesting this weekend is West Ham vs. Norwich. I really fancy a Hammers win and I’m not sure Chris Hughton can stay in the job if they drop more points – expect some busy headlines this weekend.

Anyway, have a good day Gooners!