Afternoon all, and yet again I find myself late for my attendance at the Emirates Cup… as yesterday it looks like I will miss the first game, which is 0-0 at the time of writing. I won’t speak about the Toure comments today, but will touch on them in the next day or so. Time for a quick review of yesterday’s game… Arsene starting again with the new 4-2-3-1 formation with the players lining up as follows:
Sagna – Gallas – Djourou – Traore
Ramsey – Denilson
Eboue – Rosicky – Bendtner
Personally, I’m not a fan of this formation and yet again, it sees player being played out of position. Eboue is not designed for such an attacking role and Bendtner is not a winger. Rosicky, for me was sensational – considering his 18 month absence, and it shows that experience is something you just can’t buy, develop, have in youngsters replace as he was our man of the match in the first half. The second half saw the introduction of Jack Wilshere and he was definitely the man of the second half, showing that he has a footballing brain beyond his years and beyond most players on the pitch. Clichy also made an appearance to squash rumours that he would miss the start of the season due to a back injury.
The game was quite quiet and it wasn’t until the last 10 minutes that it really took off, with Jack Wilshere running the show, Cesc on and busy, a delighted cross by the captain and a great finish by the Russian, saw us go 1-0 up. Before we had time to celebrate, Athletico Madrid snatched an equaliser when slack defending by Djourou and Gallas let one of their players in to cooly finish past Mannone. But in a crazy finish, in the last minute, we were pressuring the opposition so much that a headed back to the keeper was intercepted by Arshavin who ran past the keeper and finished from the most acuted angles ever.
Arsene speaking about Arshavin post game:
“The difference is now he knows how English football works. He knows as well he is part of the team from the start, and the team knows how important and how big an impact he can have on the results. Arshavin has what you cannot give to a player – he understands when there is an opportunity in the final third, and is certainly dangerous.”
It finished 2-1 to the Arsenal and yet again the Russian showed us why he is so important to this team.
Arsene also spoke about Rosicky, saying:
“I am pleased, but cautious. I am not a dreamer. If he gets through the next two months without set-backs, then we have won the battle, but it is not won yet.”
With Rosicky and Arshavin showing their worth, and Walcott, Wilshere and Vela around, we may not miss our mercurial Frenchman Samir Nasri too much… for those of you who haven’t seen this yet, take a quick look at this video of how Samir Nasri broke his leg:
(Thanks to gunnerblog for twittering this!)
A complete accident, but maybe Arsene is a little angry with Diaby – we haven’t seen him since… maybe he’ll make an appearance today.