Szcznesy and Djourou return… could there be a final twist?

Morning All…

I think we’ve all come to terms and understood the recent takeover or semi-takeover from Stan Kroenke and KSE; as a club, we must always air on the side of caution and that’s why I’ll be keen to see other parties involved, keeping their shares and ensuring we’re not sole owned. As I discussed yesterday after the AST meeting, there are considerations to whether KSE can afford or want the remainder of the shares, anyway… but for more info on that, read on here… but for today… let’s take a look at the injury news surrounding the team…

Injury News

Some very interesting news broke yesterday – the possibility that Szcznesy and Djourou will most likely be back for the Liverpool game this Sunday. As much as Lehmann coming back has added a little bit more excitement to the goalkeeping department, I would – without doubt – prefer our new number one to be in goal against Liverpool and then Sp*rs. Against Blackpool, although we won, it could have been a very different story had Lehmann been sent off.

I’ve been asked recently whether we need a new keeper in summer – we definitely did last summer – but with the emergence of Szcznesy as number one and Fabianski as number two – then where do we go in summer… Well that question can surely be answered in summer rather than now – but experience in the dressing room is vital and we can see the effect that Lehmann has already had in his last 2 weeks. Almunia for me, has lost every bit of confidence he has ever had and therefore, it is really time for him to move on. I’d like to see Szcznesy remain as number one, but perhaps a new face brought in too.

The second piece of injury news involves Johan Djourou – the centre back could also be back for the weekend match – and I am particularly excited to hear that we’ll have him in the line-up. He has been one of my favourite players this season and really does have a massive assurance at the back. The weak links are Squillaci and Almunia at the moment, so therefore, the re-introduction of Szcznesy and Djourou for the weekend and further games could be the tonic we need to push for the title…

Willian?

For those of you who have being following the Champions League this season, one player who looks very exciting is young Brazilian winger cum striker, Willian. And Denilson is very anxious for him to come to the Emirates. I’d have to agree with the Samba midifielder – Willian does look like a really good player – someone who I think we need. He looks like a winner – he has pace and tricks. With Arshavin supposedly on his way out and simply because I never ever want Rosicky or Diaby to player as wingers, he would be a very interesting acquisition…

Denilson said this yesterday:

“Willian would be perfect for Arsenal. I know him well from the Brazil youth team and he has a real winning mentality. I’ve heard Chelsea are interested in him but I think his character could really improve our team. We need match-winners at Arsenal and knowing what he does for Shakhtar and the national team I know he could do the same in England. I believe his style would fit much better at Arsenal because of the way we play football. He has great vision and ability. I think he’s one of the best creative players I have played with. I’ve spoken to him and told him that he could be a success with us. I think he would definitely make our team stronger.”

Arsene doesn’t have a track record of listening to players recommendations, but the feeling is that this summer, the manager has to do a bit more wheeling and dealing, and Willian could be a serious option.

Man United

And finally… Man United showed a lot of passion and spirit to take apart Chelsea yesterday as they beat them 2-1 on the night – 3-1 on aggregate. Impressive – but can they maintain the level of performance every game – with games coming thick and fast for them, it’s good that they won – it gives them more games and perhaps increases the chances of them losing games in the league. Of course, I don’t want them to win anything, but a few extra games will surely help us.

Someone asked me yesterday who I would want to win the Champions League – out of Real Madrid, Barcelona, Man United and Schalke. And I honestly wasn’t sure – I knew that I didn’t want Barcelona or Man United to win it – (yes I know Man United are an English club)… so that left Schalke and Real Madrid… If Schalke won it, then it would be a testimony to the desire that you need, but it would be weird for a team like Schalke to win a competition that Arsenal haven’t won… which kind of leaves Real Madrid… but then again, I didn’t really want Ronaldo or Adebayor to have even more inflated egos… Tough one hey!?!

Til tomorrow…

  • iffy

    Does anyone think Didier Drogba will be
    a decent signing for arsenal. Chelsea will be
    looking to cash in in the summer and perhaps bring
    in a new striker to partner torres. Drogba is
    experienced, he is a winner and a long time arsenal fan.

  • Kieran

    @ iffy:
    He’s also an OAP. Arsenal don’t need old men past there best anymore than they need young lazy pretenders.

  • wiz gun

    For the news of WS and Johan return it is like we born again.. Honestly i love WS in goal than whoever!!
    Abt WCL i’d like see man u vs barca b4 final something tht wont happen, bt btn man u and barca i’d prefer barca to win it.

  • paresh

    WE certainyl need old heads and to be honest i cannot fathom why the hell wenger doesnt keep one or two old heads on the pitch. The impact it has on the team is phenomenal – I mean remember the stoke incident and Campbell gathering the troops? Can Cesc or Rvp do that? Nope – its not their fault but I think it’s not just in their character. We have all seen true leaders at our club Adams, Viera and even Campbell – henry was not a leader for me. And before Gallas had his tantrum I’d chuck him in there.

    WE must beat Pool this weekend as i dont see anyone stopping this UTD team. cant beleive they have been able to maintain such results amidst the hectic schedule – can you imagine if it was our team in that process – we’d be playing the under 15′s by now as the whole bloody squad would be injured.

  • paresh

    On the take over issue I have been thinking long and hard about Kroenke now getting a major share holding, I knew about Fiszmann being in London and that he has had several meetings with Hill Wood and David Dein. It is very complex and I would rather wait to see how things develop. The total value of our club with the 143 million debt still outstanding is about 900 million, so I can’t see how Kroenke can pay cash up front judged by his own wealth,though he has stated he will not put the club in debt.He of course has a wife who has more money than him through Walmart and he may dispose of some of his assets in America, but my gut feeling with Fiszman being terminally ill is that this has been planned for quite a while.Joint ownership is better than one single owner, but as you know our directors do not take dividends from profits,but kroenke may do this for one reason or another,but hopefully not. I don’t think much will change for the moment. We won’t be like the Glazers but I see Kroenke in it for the long haul(remember he has been involved for three to four years already)but ultimately he will be buying the club to eventually make a profit.

  • alfie

    It was sickening watching Chelsea and Man Utd playing in the CL quarter finals knowing that Arsenal were dumped out in the last round. Watching the way Man Utd defend you can only wish that we had half of their will to win, organisation and a man at the helm who the players will do anything for. You can’t imagine Arsenal players running through brick walls for Wenger. It’s as much as he can do to get Arshavin and Denilson to run at all. At least tonight we will be able to see Spertz dumped in the same way we were. We need to dump the rubbish and bring in some quality this summer, lets hope Wenger is up to the job because very few Arsenal supporters still believe he is, we will see.

  • iffy

    Van persie still plays for Arsene..you could see the dissapointment in his face when he missed the last header against blackburn. First thing he did was glance at the boss

  • alfie

    You know what im happy spurs lost yesterday and im even happier they think they went down fighting because it reminded me something we are a much bigger club then if we had lost 5-0 on aggregate to anytime in the world it would be known as an embbarsement and the fact they even look for positvies from that is just funny because it shows how much a bigger club we are than them! We eexpect more and fair enough we haven’t lost any trophies but to loose 5-0 over to legs boost about having one of the best attacks in europe and not scoring a single goal and being PROUD of that is laughable! The reason i post this here and not on the main board is we shouldn’t mock them we should congratulate them and have a little laugh ourseleves knowin spurs will never be as good as Arsenal their standards are set way below ares and always be! COME ON YOU GUNNERS!

  • alfie

    With all the commotion surrounding Kroenke I had an article prepared about the way we are doing for the moment compared to our past. And this is from before the Blackpool game.

    In this table you can see how Arsenal have done in the last 30 seasons after 30 games.

    Pos P W D L F A GD Pt
    1981 8 Arsenal 30 11 12 7 43 37 6 45
    1982 6 Arsenal 30 14 8 8 25 21 4 50
    1983 14 Arsenal 30 11 8 11 39 37 2 41
    1984 12 Arsenal 30 11 6 13 46 42 4 39
    1985 6 Arsenal 30 14 6 10 48 37 11 48
    1986 5 Arsenal 30 16 7 7 39 32 7 55
    1987 3 Arsenal 30 15 9 6 42 18 24 54
    1988 5 Arsenal 30 15 7 8 46 28 18 52
    1989 1 Arsenal 30 17 8 5 58 31 27 59
    1990 3 Arsenal 30 15 5 10 45 30 15 50
    1991 1 Arsenal 30 19 10 1 53 13 40 65
    1992 6 Arsenal 30 11 11 8 51 35 16 44
    1993 13 Arsenal 30 11 7 12 27 27 0 40
    1994 3 Arsenal 30 13 12 5 34 16 18 51
    1995 9 Arsenal 30 10 10 10 35 32 3 40
    1996 5 Arsenal 30 14 9 7 42 27 15 51
    Tot 100 773
    Avg 6,25 48,31
    1996 5 Arsenal 29 13 9 7 39 27 12 48
    1997 3 Arsenal 30 15 9 6 49 26 23 54
    1998 2 Arsenal 30 17 9 4 49 26 23 60
    1999 2 Arsenal 30 16 11 3 42 13 29 59
    2000 4 Arsenal 30 16 6 8 53 31 22 54
    2001 2 Arsenal 30 15 9 6 47 29 18 54
    2002 2 Arsenal 30 18 9 3 60 32 28 63
    2003 1 Arsenal 30 19 6 5 64 32 32 63
    2004 1 Arsenal 30 22 8 0 58 20 38 74
    2005 3 Arsenal 30 19 7 4 68 32 36 64
    2006 6 Arsenal 30 15 5 10 48 23 25 50
    2007 4 Arsenal 30 16 7 7 52 28 24 55
    2008 2 Arsenal 30 19 10 1 58 22 36 67
    2009 4 Arsenal 30 15 10 5 48 27 21 55
    2010 3 Arsenal 30 20 4 6 71 33 38 64
    2011 2 Arsenal 30 17 8 5 59 29 30 59
    Tot 41,00 895
    Avg 2,73 59,67

    And I think for most of us who have been a fan in those early years this gives a very good image of the way Arsenal have been doing in those years.

    As the real Arsenal fans will know in which year we became champions over those 30 years it was not really needed but I have put the years in bold. I also noted the difference between the Wenger era and the years before Wenger.

    In the first 15 years of this survey we won 2 titles but for the rest it was rather an up and down period. We got an average league position of around 6th place. So one could say we were an Europa League team in those days. If we were lucky.

    The only exception in fact was the 1989-1991 period when we won the league twice and finished in third in between. But for the rest well it wasn’t at very constant staying amongst the top teams.

    It all changed in the Wenger era. Our average position after 30 games is just below 3. We won 3 titles and only once we weren’t in the top 4. And that was in our final year at Highbury. We did managed to make it to 4th on the last day of the season.

    So being in second position now is even for the Wenger era slightly better than on average. And yet some go overboard and can’t see anything positive in the season.

    And it also gives a very good picture about the fact that we never have been a team that constantly was in the top in the last 30 years. More than often we were not even close to being a top team. A team closer to the bottom than to the top.

    But since the Wenger era it changed and we have been a team constant at the top or close to the top. So many supporters will have been spoiled by those golden years. And remember in these last years we suddenly had and have to fight against teams that are having unlimited resources and we are competing against such teams.

    In fact for the moment we are in what one could say an average situation after 30 games in the Wenger era. But if you compare it to the period before we are in a golden period. And this for almost 16 years on a row.

    We might make it, we might not make it. We have won leagues coming from behind, and we have lost leagues standing first after 30 games in the season.

    Anything can happen, this is football you know. It always have been this way and always will stay that way: its unpredictable. But one thing is for sure we are still in it with a chance. And this is more than could be said in the era before Wenger in most of the seasons.

  • CON-MAN

    definately need a new keeper, if for competition. i mean scezney broke his finger, alumnia injured in pre match warm up…i mean anything can happen.