Man City vs Arsenal, Carling Cup Preview

Morning all… and it’s time to switch our attention away from the league to the Carling Cup and it’s time to see our fringe players and a selection of our kids battle it out at the City of Manchester stadium. Our first team couldn’t get the better of Tevez and co, so it’s definitely going to be a tough one for our youngsters, but it’s part of their development and of course with injuries to a few key members of our squad, the kids have a massive chance to impress and potentially make a claim for the first team.

Arsene hinted that we’ll see two of the kids in Wilshere and Eastmond.

“I believe we have a good mixture of experienced players and young players but we will play young players that is for sure. It will be a typical Carling Cup side. For example, you will see players like Craig Eastmond and Jack Wilshere.”

Craig Eastmond has featured earlier in the competition and did well, and looks to have jumped ahead of Frimpong, Coquelin and Randall in the defensive midfield role. With Alex Song travelling to the African cup of Nations in January, we’ll need some alternatives in that role, and if Eastmond plays well, he could become a realistic option.

It’s hard to predict who will play tomorrow as we’ve not heard the squad yet, but let’s try anyway!

Mannone

Gilbert – Senderos – Silvestre – Eboue

Coquelin – Eastmond

Wilshere – Ramsey – Merida

Vela

As you can see, I’ve chosen Eboue at left back – the Ivorian hasn’t featured much and I don’t think Arsene wants to risk Armand Traore, who I think he wants to give a extended run in the team as he is a natural left back who suits the way we want our full backs to operate in the 4-3-3. I also think Vela will get the nod up front as the Mexican is short of match practice and needs some game time under his belt. With Wilshere and Merida both available (I think), we should see them both be deployed in midfield alongside Ramsey. I think we’ll play two defensive midfielders in Coquelin and Eastmond who have both impressed.

The official squad should be released around midday so we will know if Arsene will spring any surprises or if someone is not available.

So interesting news outside of the Carling Cup and Arsene gave a hint that he will look at adding another striker in the January transfer window if the opportunity arises. Obviously this has come off the back of the Van Persie injury and the fact he is now out for the season…. Arsene saying this:

“It has to [change]. I didn’t feel we were in the need to buy anybody but we will be out on the market that is for sure now. However we will only make a decision if it suits us.”

Interesting… Vague… But at least some hope in adding to the team… David Villa? I doubt it… Chamakh… Maybe? Random unknown player who has potential… Probably!

Anyway, let’s see what happens later today and I’ll be back around 7ish for Match Day Live! Til then…

  • yemi

    maybe carlton cole

  • Berth

    Wenger ain’t gonna buy anyone. I thought by now you lots know Wengers ways. Wenger is a bit rigid, less flexible and some times a slow learner.

    In today’s game he should please field a strong squad. Starting with Walcot, Vela, Rosicky wont be a bad idea.

  • wills

    I think Merida is suspended for this game, as he was sent off in the Reserve match last week and I’m pretty sure suspensions carry through into the first team game. They do on Football Manager anyway!!

    I’d like to see Walcott get some match time from the start, maybe Rosicky too with Fabianski in Goal.

  • Berth

    On a second thought I rather we loose to Man city to give them belief against Chelsea this weekend.

  • wills

    @Berth, yep City taking points off Chelsea would be nice. Although I’d still prefer to win tonight!

  • Debs

    18-man squad for today’s game released on the Arsenal website:

    Tomas Rosicky
    Carlos Vela
    Aaron Ramsey
    Alex Song
    Mikael Silvestre
    Jack Wilshere
    Lukasz Fabianski (GK)
    Vito Mannone (GK)
    Emmanuel Eboue
    Armand Traore
    Fran Merida
    Kyle Bartley
    Francis Coquelin
    Craig Eastmond
    Emmanuel Frimpong
    Kerrea Gilbert
    Mark Randall
    Sanchez Watt

    I’d love to see Kyle Bartley given a run-out in CB. He’s played with Silvestre a number of times for the Reserves so they’ve got a bit of a partnership going on.

  • Gooner Get Ya

    I think AW will go for Dzeko or Chamakh…if any one at all.

    I’m not that fussed about the Carling Cup but it would be nice to beat the Manc’s.

  • wills

    Fabianski
    Eboue-Bartley-Silvestre-Traore
    Ramsey-Eastmond-Merida
    Wilshere-Vela-Rosicky

    Subs: Mannone, Watt, Randall, Frimpong, Gilbert, Song, Coquelin

    Possible starting XI?

    Going to be a tough game, hopefully we’ll keep Ade-bay-whore quiet. I’d love to see one of our lot score and run the length of the pitch back to the Arsenal fans to celebrate!!!

  • Gooner Get Ya

    Apparently we bid 30M euros for an Inter striker (botelli or something like that) but JM wanted to include Fabregas in the deal…guess that’ll a no then :-)

  • http://yahoo sammie

    the squad is not bad. but when early defeat occurs wenger should have option b

  • devday

    So, there’s no Senderos in the squad… very interesting. There isn’t any injury news on Senderos so it’s very strange that he hasn’t been included. You would have expected him to be in the squad considering we’re up against players like Adebayor and Roque Santa Cruz.

    The omen is not good for Senderos – surely after this snub he must be off in the January transfer window….!?!

  • devday

    Although I do understand the decision… think it’s time for players like Bartley to get a run out ahead of Senderos anyway for his development.

  • Leeroy.N

    It’s wierd that he isn’t in the squad. If he is off in January, the good news is extra funds to spend on someone upfront in that window.

    Even though it is the Carling Cup, we are now expected to field a young side, no matter the team we come up against. Of course it is a good thing to have faith in the youth but I’m really glad there is a wealth of experience travelling too. With the likes of Song, Rosicky, Eboue and to a lesser extent Silvestre. It’s a good chance for Vela, Merida and Traore to get some more minutes under their belts to build up some confidence. I hope tonight we take the chances that are given, but then again there won’t be many clear opportunities against a side like Man Sh*tty, so it’s time for them to a chance on their own ability. We all know players such as Rosicky, Ramsey, Wilshere and Merida can strike a ball from distance. But the question is are they allowed to?? Come on you Gunners! Show them what you are made of!

    Win, Lose or Draw.. Gooner Til I Die!!

  • wills

    Given
    Richard-Toure-Lescott-Bridge
    SWP-Barry-Ireland
    Bellamy-Tevez-Adebay*r

    Fabianski
    Eboue-Song-Silvestre-Traore
    Ramsey-Eastmond-Rosicky
    Wilshere-Vela-Merida

  • wills

    I’ve just been asked by a fellow gooner, who I dislike more, Ashley Cole or Adebayor?

    Quite a tough question I thought, one left for money, the other left for money and because the thought he was too good for us. I’d put them on a par I think.

    Just wondered what everyone else on WOA thought?

  • Richiebacardi

    The one who was more ungreatful…