Urgh, I feel terrible. I think I’ve caught the dreaded lurgy.
A bit going on this morning so I’ll try to get through it as quickly as I can. Arsene Wenger is happy that Gilberto Silva is getting the recognition he deserves suggesting that people didn’t realise how important he was for us. He’s certainly in the middle of a purple patch in front of goal and his contribution in terms of protecting the defence and mopping up in midfield has almost gone unnoticed in light of that.
The fact that this run of good form has coincided with him being captain in place of the absent Thierry Henry has led some people to suggest he should be given the armband on a permanent basis. Gilberto says:
I don’t know if captaincy has made a difference but I am enjoying scoring goals because most of the time I stand in front of defenders, just doing the hard job on the pitch, holding the midfield and trying to stop them playing through our defence.
While I think the extra responsibility has done something to his game I don’t think he’s going to be made captain on a full time basis. There’s no reason why he can’t play like that without being captain and Wenger has always maintained Henry will remain the skipper. I just don’t think you can take away the captaincy from someone without it becoming a big issue and let’s not forget that Thierry is proud to be Arsenal captain. As well as that what happens the next time Gilberto has a poor game? You can be sure there’ll be plenty who’ll say ‘Oh, we should never have made him captain. He’s become complacent.’
Still, he’s doing a great job at the moment and you can’t argue with that. Here he talks about how the team stood up to the physical challenge of the Watford game.
Ahead of the game at the weekend it was confirmed that Emmanuel Adebayor will definitely be out with a thigh strain. With Henry already out it looks like Julio Baptista could get a rare start. It will be interesting to see how he goes. He’s obviously got to take his chances when they come along but a cold night in Sheffield will be a real test for the Brazilian. Johann Djourou should be fit but I wouldn’t be surprised to see Philippe Senderos start in his place, particularly as he’s better able to cope with an aerial game like Sheffield United will play.
Nicklas Bendtner has been talking about next season. Currently on loan at Birmingham the young Dane says:
The plan is that I will stay at Birmingham until my loan spell expires at the end of the season. Afterwards, I will go back to Arsenal and break into the team there. I feel my chances at Arsenal are good. I am just as good as all the others and it’s only Thierry Henry who is certain to play.
Whatever else you have to say he’s got confidence in his own ability.
And that’s about it. I’m going to take some hot lemon and paracetemol and ibuprofen and morphine and oxycontin all washed down with a bottle of Jamesons. That should see me right.