A very quick Saturday round-up because I have a cold and a sore throat and I feel like a bag of shite.
We’ll start with Demento getting his knickers in a twist after Arsene Wenger allegedly told his players United would tire after 70 minutes. He called the remarks ‘petty’ and ‘nonsense’. Of course this was merely a comment Mathieu Flamini had made to L’Equipe but obviously it a struck a chord. The boss clarified what he meant and said United are hardly weak if they’re top of the league but I’d suggest Flamini’s original quote is nearer to the mark.
With Robin van Persie injured Jeremie Aliadiere will be staying at the club until summer at least and the boss believes he can get goals. One man on his way out though is Alex Song. The boss said:
Diaby is back and Denilson has shown that he is ready to play so, in central midfield, we are a bit congested with Flamini, Denilson, Diaby, Fabregas and Gilberto.
It’s hard to see him getting anywhere near the first team bar an injury crisis and when see how much difference there is between him and Denilson it puts his rather limited talents into perspective. Staying with midfield the manager feels Cesc is in need of a rest no matter what he says about wanting to play every game and he’ll be on the bench for one of the upcoming games, perhapsÂ Sunday’s against Bolton but more likely the game against Sp*rs because we’ll have Gilberto back for that.
There’s still no sign of William Gallas coming back. Apparently he’s been overenthusiastic in his recovery and has ended up crocked again. I suppose with the team on a roll and the likes of Senderos and Djourou showing they’re more than capable he’s tried to come back quicker than he might have. Of him Arsene said:
He should be back in two to three weeks but I still would not like to put any set time on it.
Meanwhile the boss has backed Theo Walcott to overcome his ‘growing pains’ and start producing. He might get a chance of a run in the team now that Hleb and Ljungberg, his two main rivals for the right hand side of midfield, are injured. He’s looked a little lost recently and short of confidence. A goal would certainly do him the world of good.
A move for Gareth Bale was ruled out and from AW’s comments it seems it has more to do with the price that Southampton are looking for rather than the fact we have two left backs already.
Now, moving on to the game on Sunday we’ve had a mixed record over the years against Bolton. In one of this morning’s Irish papers Kevin Davies says Arsenal have a ‘mental block’ when it comes to Bolton but Arsene Wenger believes his team can cope better and has played down suggestions that Fat Sam’s men are just a bunch of cloggers.
They can play. You cannot say that Gary Speed is not a football player, or Campo, Nolan, Anelka or Diouf. Chelsea wanted Tal Ben Haim because he is a good footballer. But my team have improved a lot on the physical side. Wednesday night against Spurs in the Carling Cup was very important.
I’m expecting a good match, I have to say. There’s an edge to this Arsenal team at the moment that wasn’t there in November when we played them before and I’m confident the lads can get a result. Maybe not the 4-0 that was suggested in yesterday’s Arsecast but I think we have the players and the ability and the physicality to beat them.
The final point for today is Michel Platini’s appointment as president of UEFA. Not a good day for football, in my opinion, and while Arsene Wenger is happy that a ‘footballer’ is in the position he’s ‘scared‘ of Platini’s appointment. I really hope that this doesn’t cause the split in European football many fear but some of Platini’s ideas about the game of football would drastically change the game and not for the better.
Right, time for some Uniflu, some barbiturates, a little bit of paracetamol, some ibuprofen and some chewable morphine. I should be right as rain after that.