Indeed, the season started with a bang down in Tottenham, with riots & fires kicking off on Saturday night – when the news broke, everyone thought that the riots were down to the club, but that’s not true, although the majority of rioters were Sp*rs fans… it was down to other reasons. If you’re interested, read more here.
Personally, we live in a society where that kind of behaviour is uncalled for – many innocent people have been hurt, many shop owners and innocent parties have had their premises vandalised. What was achieved by such a act of rage and violence? What kind of a message does that send out to the rest of the world? London is supposed to be a safe city and is with the Olympics coming to our capital next summer, what damage has it done to our global appeal and is London actually safe any more?
Back to all things Arsenal, and we lost 2-1 to Benifica on the weekend. It was a game of two halves with the first team doing a decent job in the first half, with another goal from Robin Van Persie putting us 1-0 up and a failing in the 2nd half which saw us ultimately lose 2-1. I haven’t had the chance to watch the game yet, but you can read the fans reactions in the comments section on the previous post here.
We do have a few injuries in key areas at the moment, and we’ve got a little injury crisis going on. The game saw Van Persie, Vermaelen and Gibbs all ruled out through injury and the preparations for next weekend look ominous. With Cesc & Nasri also “injured”, Diaby, Walcott and Wilshere properly injured, and Bendtner, Vela, Eboue & Almunia also absent due to possible departures, as things stand, our strongest team on Saturday will be:
Sagna – Djourou – Koscileny – Traore
Rosicky – Song – Ramsey
Gervinho – Van Persie – Arshavin
With a bench of Fabianski, Squillaci, Miquel, Jenkinson, Frimpong, Lansbury and Chamakh
Miyachi hasn’t got a work permit yet, so he can’t be included at this stage…. We have the midweek Internationals, so let’s hope the XI mentioned above don’t get injured too!
[Update: Jack Wilshere has withdrawn from the England squad due to injury]
Arsene was quizzed on the Van Persie injury and said:
“It is an ankle problem, I don’t know how bad it is. Gibbs has a muscular [thigh] problem and Vermaelen has a slight back problem. The situation is not sorted out with Cesc but, as I said yesterday in the press conference, there is nothing to add.”
Personally, it’s clear that Cesc has played his last game for Arsenal – he’s not included in the Spain squad on Wednesday due to injury, but ultimately the player is not happy, he wants to move and he’s unable to play for Arsenal. I would be surprised if Nasri stayed too, considering the money we can get for him now.
Arsene did confirm we would be making a signing very soon:
“We have to stay focused and confident. I don’t think there is any reason to have a bad mood. All we can do is prepare well. Yes. We will [be in the market for new players before the season starts].”
Fingers crossed, eyes peeled, come on Arsene, get those signings in!