Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The five alternatives for replacing the Ox and Walcott

By 1970's Gooner

What a shambles it was last night. No fight, no midfield creativity and two muscle injuries to two important first team players.

The probable absence of the Ox and Walcott from the Swansea game and at Bayern threaten to actually derail the gigantic momentum that has been building up in this month.

Walcott's (and the Ox's) pace would have been pivotal in the counter attacking tactics that would have been employed away at Bayern.

And along with the injury to Ramsey it is again muscle injuries that threaten to destroy all the good work done on the pitch.

And who is to blame?

Firstly Ramsey was again overworked with Wenger admitting that he should have rested him against Watford. Of course what happens? He gets a bad hamstring during the game against Bayern.

Do you remember a similar confession by Wenger after Ramsey sustained a muscle injury away at West Ham a season or so ago? The medical staff warned Wenger that he was in the grey zone but he just went ahead and selected him!

Secondly the Ox last night obviously did not warm up properly before the game. Just how else can a player sustain a muscle injury in the first three minutes of a game?

And even more damning again, obviously Walcott did not warm up AT ALL before replacing the Ox! We saw it on the screens on the TV. Why didn't Wenger and the medical staff tell him to get warmed up and never mind if we play with 10 men for a few minutes more?

It was shambles I tell you. A shambles.

In my experience any muscle injury even the softest ones will need 10 to 14 days just to make sure.

So what options are now in front of Wenger for Saturday?

There are five alternatives none of which are ideal of course but I have included some that are not so obvious.

1. Play Gibbs as a left sided midfielder and move Sanchez on the right.

Not ideal I know as it would also involve moving Sanchez away from the area which he uses to move in and crank his venomous shots. Still Gibbs has shown that he is fit and more importantly battle worthy.

2. Play Debuchy right back and move Bellerin on the right side of midfield.

The same idea as above but I would favour this less as Debuchy has miserably failed to obtain the high standards he had reached before his injuries. Last night he looked like a rooky too. Bellerin of course would be a good enough right sided midfielder with his pace and nous which is a pity as I would have liked to have seen him in that position.

I consider Chambers too slow to start as a right back. Remember what a horrible time he had last season away at Swansea?

3. Campbell to start (on either wing)

This option could find favour with Wenger as Campbell is more street wise with the capability to stretch defenders and also be aware of his defensive duties. This he has shown on the few occasions he has started. The negative is that both him and Sanchez like to play on the left but Wenger may decide that beggars can't be choosers.

4. Play Flamini on the right side!

Well it may sound crazy but Flamini could provide a balance on the right. What I mean is that he will be efficient with the ball (i.e not give it away), he is experienced enough to make the right pass and track back and tack in when we are defending. He did score two goals against Spurs.

5 And finally move Cazorla on the right and play Flamini with Coquelin in central midfield.

This would mean that Cazorla will move away from the area he has been so terrific this season and could impair our creativity from this deep lying midfield position. 

He could of course do a Ramsey and come in from the right to take part in the built up but he will have to, as Ramsey did, track back and cover his full back. He has of course played this position before he was converted into a central midfielder.

This option maintains an overall balance in the team and may be favoured by Wenger.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Arsenal offer 15m for Olympiakos's Fortunis

By the Transfer Wizard

The Greek press are reporting today that Arsene Wenger was very impressed with Fortunis during the clash with Olympiakos at The Emirates and has been in contact with Olympiakos with finalising a deal for the January transfer window.

The offer is believed to be around 15m euros.

Ironically Fortunis is the player that took that corner with Ospina dropping the ball into his own net!

However Tottenham are also interested having watched the player last week in Greece. Their scout Peter Quick was there to watch him.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

The after effects of Sanchez's particiption against Brazil

By 1970's Gooner

There were worries about Sanchez's groin strain just before Chile's game against Brazil. Important worries that even the Chile boss was considering resting Alexis.

"Alexis arrived not at his top of form, with pain in the adductor. He couldn't play at 100% but we thought that for us him not playing was to give too much advantage to our rivals because his presence in our team makes things difficult for our opponents."

So he played the full 90 minutes and scored in the 2 0 victory.

Now Chile play Peru on Tuesday and the question is whether Sanchez will be rested. I doubt it as he has taken part in the training session today and if he does not get worse then the Chile coach will use him.

What worries us gooners however is the likely negative aftereffects on Sanchez's groin of having to play two full competitive games in the space of five days.

We have to also take also into consideration that Alexis will travel back to London on a long haul transatlantic flight.

Arsenal play away to Watford next Saturday evening and then Bayern Munich next Tuesday at The Emirates.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

More news of Alexis Sanchez's injury coming out of Chile

By 1970's Gooner

Although yesterday Alexis did not train with the Chile national team the news is that he has returned to training just before the crucial match against Brazil, according to La Tercera newspaper.

It seems that yesterday's absence was merely precautionary taking into account that the player withdrew from Arsenal's match late on with a groin problem and that he travelled for many hours in a transatlantic flight.

His absence yesterday had worried the Chile coach that his groin could get worse but this event does not appear to have materialised. He is worried more about Vidal whose presence tomorrow is in doubt.

I wonder however if the news for Sanchez is really good. If he does play against Brazil there is the possibility that his groin may be aggravated.

Let's hope this isn't so...

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Sanchez injury is not going away according to Chile coach

By 1970's Gooner

More news coming out of Chile with regard to Alexis Sanchez' s groin strain. La Tercera are reporting that the Chile coach, Sampaoli, considers both Vidal's and Sanchez's chances of starting against Brazil tomorrow are low.

This is what he said today:

'.....concerned about the situation of Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sanchez, who come to experience discomfort in recent weeks playing for their clubs, "For neither can we say that is confirmed for the match against Brazil."

Their participation, at least in the first match is in doubt."

Let us hope that Arsene Wenger's initial diagnosis of only a 'slight' groin strain is proved wrong.

Will it?

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Sanches misses training with Chile national team

By 1970's Gooner

The Chilean newspaper 'Latercera' has reported today that Alexis Sanchez has not taken part in the national team's first training session ahead of a vital qualifier against Brazil.

This may be as a precaution against the groin problem that forced him to ask to be substituted at the 80th minute in the game against Manchester United.

It seems however that the extend of the strain may be more serious than what Arsene Wenger and his medical people initially thought (as is usually the case)!

This is why, as it is reported, Arsenal have asked to be in constant contact with the Chile medical team so that they are regularly informed about the extent of the injury and if need be request that he is withdrawn from the squad.

Let's hope that his absence from the training session today is only precautionary.