Busy morning ahead so let’s get straight into it.
We’ll start with the rather disheartening news that Samir Nasri is going to be out for a month after picking up a knee injury against Liverpool on Sunday. He had minor surgery yesterday. It is a blow, for sure, and I can totally understand people’s frustration at losing another player to injury so early in the season.
I do wonder if we don’t get a bit too carried away though. Yes, we do have a bit of a reputation for injuries now but it happened in a tackle with Steven Gerrard, I think. Unless we invent force-fields for our players things like this will happen from time to time. And although Nasri has been one of best pre-season performers, the better news is that it’s only a month, there’s an interlull in there too, and we do have plenty of options when it comes to replacing him.
Tomas Rosicky was excellent when he came on against Liverpool on Sunday and there’s that guy Fabregas who’s also not bad. So yes, it’s a blow and yes, it’s annoying and frustrating, but it’s not the end of days or a sign of the apocalypse. Had it been a defender who got crocked then we might be in more trouble.
Speaking of which there were all kinds of rumours emerging last night about Sevilla’s French international Sebastien Squillaci. I can’t say I know a great deal about him, to be honest, but he’s the right age, he’s been at clubs which have competed for and won trophies and would bring experience to the squad. He’s probably not the signing that will make a lot of people whoop and holler but at this point I swear we could sign the laboratory-made clone of Bobby Moore crossed with Franco Baresi, coated in injury resistant material, and people would still think he wasn’t good enough. Let’s see what happens.
It does look as if Johann Djourou is fit for the weekend. Arsenal’s reserves are in Dublin this weekend for a little round-robin tournament against the reserves of Man United and Irish side Shamrock Rovers. Havard Nordtveit, a man you would expect to at least be cover if Djourou wasn’t ready, is included in the traveling squad so I think we can assume the big Swiss is fit.
As the weekend draws nearer there’s nothing concrete regarding the goalkeeping situation. David Seaman reckons we should sign Mark Schwarzer, saying:
He is a great player, tried and tested and can make saves that win you games. He is a world-class goalkeeper.
I’m not sure he’s that good but he’s certainly closer to it than Almunia or Fabianski. Fulham will wait until they’ve got a replacement lined up so it could well be a case that Almunia continues against Blackpool on Saturday. I think if we ask Blackpool to hang on while we put a man on the near post just before they have a shot on goal we’ll be fine.
And speaking of Saturday the club are planning a little celebration at the return of the Clock End, North Bank and the renaming of the stands to East and West. Also, from REDaction comes the news that the Elvis song will no longer be played as the teams come out. It’ll be replaced by Right here, Right now, which was used at Highbury a lot.
I know that’s not to everyone’s taste either but I’m glad Elvis is gone. It was such a dreary, contrived load of old bollocks. It was hardly inspirational either. To be honest, I don’t really understand why we need a song at all (not Alex, lest yet another smart arse make that comment). Some clubs do it because they have an actual anthem synonymous with them. We don’t really and while I think there was some merit to trying I think there’s more merit in admitting the song was fucking terrible and getting rid of it.
Now, if we can just sort out that calling out the players names thing, replacing it with a wrestling style announcer who gives each player a nickname – Thomas “The Verminator” Vermaelen, Robin “Crutches” van Persie, Tomas “Crutches” Rosicky, Samir “Crutches” Nasri, Johan “shalomboing” Djourou etc.
Henri Lansbury could join Sanchez Watt (who?), on loan at Leeds.
And that’s about that. More Blackpool team news tomorrow as well as a fresh dose of audio arse in the Arsecast.