So it’s Fulham tonight and a chance to put the disappointment of Saturday behind us. We welcome back Thierry Henry, Robin van Persie and Tomas Rosicky to the squad – and all three should start – but Julio Baptista is rested.
Explaining his decision to rest a player who hasn’t played very much the boss said:
There is no basic problem with him. He has just got to adapt to the pace of the game. He has just come back from six weeks out with injury, and I feel he needs to work, maybe he will play on Saturday. I am confident he will make a big impact here.
With the upcoming schedule pretty hectic it’s likely that there’ll be some ‘rotation’ of the squad tonight. With Sp*rs on Saturday, then Porto and Chelsea on the horizon the boss will be looking to use as much of his squad as possible. And he’s once again reiterated his belief in them and laid down the gauntlet to them, saying:
The period that comes up now for us is the moment of truth. We must not hide. There is a big obstacle in front of the players. I feel they are ready to jump it – and they have a fantastic leap.
We are the leapingest team in all the land. I know what he means though. We’ve seen flashes of what they can do this season. United away, Reading away, Liverpool at home – great performances, good results. The problem we’ve had is that there have been too many average results even though the performances have, in general, been better than the results would suggest.
A win tonight is vital but then so is a win against Sp*rs on Saturday, we must get a result in Portugal to qualify for the next stage of the CL and then it’s Chelsea where a good result could kick-start this team (but we might have said that before).
I don’t think this game is on the tv or if there are any streams so maybe following what happens tonight might not be easy. After making a Mylesesque prediction that we’d win against Bolton I’m keeping my mouth shut this time but I’ll have my lucky hat on, don’t you worry. I suggest you all do the same. No, not my lucky hat. It’d never fit all of us. Get your own lucky hats.
In other news Arsene Wenger has said giving Fabio Cannavaro the Ballon d’Or ahead of Thierry Henry was a ‘mistake‘ while the Mirror reports that Birmingham will bid Â£3m for Nicklas Bendtner if they get promoted.
Finally for today it’s time to announce the winners of our Kolo t-shirt competition with thanks to Goalhanger.com. The answer to the very difficult question was that we signed Kolo from ASEC Mimosas (although like many of you I’d love to see a team called EPIC Boombastas) and the RNG did its thing so the winners are Emmanuel Kisiangani and Matthew Hume. I’ll be in touch with you guys to get your address and shirt size details. The rest of you will have to break out the credit cards so you can look Kolotacular this Christmas.
And that’s it. More tomorrow when hopefully we’ll have three points in the bag and at this point I don’t care how we get them.