Good morning to you. Regardless of the Interlull that last week seems to have just flown by. One day it was Monday and the next it was literally Friday.
The bad news about young Theodore was confirmed yesterday. He’ll spend 4-6 weeks out with an ankle injury and Arsene Wenger revealed they were scared it might well have been more. He joins Robin van Persie who’ll spend the same amount of time out with an almost identical injury. It could be a good thing though. They could have a race, figuratively speaking, to see who can get back quickest to get injured again.
Speaking to my pal Paddy Plougher he says van Persie is 4/6 on with Theo on a generous 7/4 – fill yer boots lads.
There’s good news about Samir Nasri, however. AW says:
He could even be involved against Bolton. He has had a very good preparation and joins in [training] tomorrow. If needed I will integrate him in the squad for Bolton but for sure he will be back for our first Champions League game against Braga.
I suspect that means Nasri will be on the bench against Bolton and if I had to guess I’d say Tomas Rosicky, provided none of his groins, knees or testicles has exploded while on international duty, will take Walcott’s place in the team. The Czech has had a good start to the season, he looks much more like the Rosicky we all hoped he’d be, and while we might miss Theo’s pace I’m not sure Bolton are going to play the kind of expansive game which will allow us to get in behind them very often.
Carlos Vela, of course, is another option. He scored for Mexico in midweek and could well be considered, but I think he’ll start on the bench.
Bolton is where Jack Wilshere spent the second half of last season on loan and Owen Coyle reckons he lost his footballing virginity up there with Kevin Davies and co. I know, what a thoroughly unpleasant image to put in your heads first thing in the morning, but Coyle says:
Maybe he was a bit immature when he came here but when he left he was a real man. In fact, it was a hot afternoon, the last day of June, and the sun was a demon. The clouds were afraid, one-ten in the shade and the pavement was steaming.
Jack’s Bolton sunrise aside, he’ll obviously be desperate to play some part in this game. Can’t see it from the start though. Diaby, Song and Cesc will likely be the midfield but he certainly provides another option from the bench.
Also in contention are the reserves playing trio of Squillaci, Djourou and Denilson. They’re all fit and ready and it’s just ‘down to selection’ according to the boss. I think he’ll stick with Vermaelen and Koscielny but again the competition for places is a good thing. More on the Bolton game tomorrow when we hear from the manager at his press conference today.
So that lot aside the only injuries are to Nicklas Bendtner – another three or four weeks away yet – and Aaron Ramsey who we really shouldn’t expect anything of this time of Christmas, in my opinion. Anything sooner than that is a bonus.
Footballers these days seem so much more brittle than they used to be. Is there any solution. One man has an idea which probably won’t go down well with everyone but definitely raises some questions. Go read.
Right, we’re still suffering the effects of the quiet week so there’s not much else around in terms of news. And despite the paucity of incident and info I have managed to cobble together an Arsecast so let’s get to it.
Joining me to discuss all the nothing is Julian H from the most popular Arsenal blog with the word ‘ginger’ in it, Gingers for Limpar (or @gingers4limpar if you wanna do the Twitter thing). On the agenda, the Interlull, injuries, the start to the season thus far and the Bolton game.
Also in there Internet Joe, Talkshite Radio with an exclusive Ryan Shawcross interview and the usual waffle.
You can subscribe to the Arsecast on iTunes by clicking here. Or if you want to subscribe directly to the feed URL you can do so too. To download this week’s Arsecast directly – click here (25mb MP3) or you can listen directly below without leaving this very page.
And that’s about that. Proper football returns tomorrow. This is a good thing.