Injury news to start with this morning and we’re going to be without three players for varying lengths of time. Freddie Ljungberg has a calf injury while Baptista damaged his hamstring in a behind closed doors reserve game during the week. They’re both definitely out for the next two games.
Also injured is player of the month Emmanuel Eboue who’ll be missing for 3 to 4 weeks after damaging knee ligaments playing for the Ivory Coast. I’d imagine that’ll mean Justin Hoyte moving to right back as Lauren is still a long way from fitness. The boss is expecting William Gallas to be fit despite not playing for France so he’ll slot in at left back. Philippe Senderos and Gael Clichy are both making good progress from their injuries but still need a bit more conditioning before they can be considered.
Watford’s manager, Adrian Boothroyd, reckons this could be a good time for them to play Arsenal because we’ve had so many players away with their countries. Certainly it’ll be a good test of the squad to see if they can pick up the momentum they were building before the break. Will Theo be involved after his goals midweek and will Robin van Persie keep his place up front? We shall see.
Three Arsenal players have been nominated for FIFA’s World Player of the Year award. Thierry Henry, Jens Lehmann and Tomas Rosicky are all in the 30 man shortlist released yesterday. For me Henry should have won it ahead of Ronaldinho in 2004 and 2005 and maybe now he’s not at the height of his form like back then but his consistency, goalscoring and creativity has to be rewarded this time around. There’s no other outstanding candidate and if he doesn’t win this year then …erm… something really bad or something. Yeah.
West Ham manager Alan Pardew says Nigel Reo-hokey-kokey-Coker was unsettled by a deadline day bid from Arsenal.
And that’s that. Nothing else to report, the boss will do his usual Friday press conference which will mean there’s plenty to talk about tomorrow before we get proper football back again.