Saturday round-up

*boilk*

Morning all,

anyone looking for any comment on the stuff about Arsene’s private life can click away now. I, literally, could not give a shit. And websites repeating the stuff, who otherwise bemoan the tabloids and their noxious ways, would do well to reconsider their postings.

Onto matters of football and we’ve got some players back for tomorrow’s game against Newcastle. Cesc, Denilson, Song and Arshavin all return. Thomas Vermaelen is just days away while Robin van Persie has returned to full training. Speaking about van Persie’s call up to the national team, Arsene said:

At the moment Van Persie is coming back from injury and we are concerned to use him for our club. You can understand that we are bit less concerned that he plays automatically a friendly game. You have common sense and can agree with that.

Which is a ridiculous notion. Common sense? Doing what’s best for the player and his club instead of throwing what little bit of weight you have around? Nonsense. I just don’t think he understands how international football works. And when he goes and plays in this game and then spends 10 weeks out with a bruised hymen we should pay his wages and shut up.

Diaby Essien
Essien tests the bendiness of Diaby's ankle

There’s no sign of Abou Diaby making a comeback with the boss admitting he doesn’t know when he’ll play again. Which isn’t terribly encouraging. He said:

He’s not been the same since the incident with Robinson. Before he was completely fantastic. He has played since then but was never completely himself.

Completely fantastic is a wonderful way to describe someone. I’m not sure I necessarily agree with it but I dig the sentiment. What’s interesting though is that he didn’t mention the tackle in the Chelsea game which might also have something to do with it. During that game he got done by Michael Essien on the same ankle and as he’d been back and playing since the Robinson incident it can’t be just a coincidence that it’s got worse since.

Of course it’s worth mentioning that it’s the same ankle that Sunderland clogger Dan Smith banjaxed back in 2006. That there might be a weakness there should be no surprise given the gravity of that particular injury. I know he’s a player who divides opinion but it’s a real shame to see any of our lads out injured like this. We get the hump over bad tackles and rightly so – Abou Diaby is an example of how one bad tackle can mar a career for years and years. I hope we can sort him out sooner rather than later.

There are new deals in the offing for Gael Clichy and Samir Nasri apparently, the boss saying he’s ‘hopeful’ that both will be sorted out soon. Maybe if we put a clause in Clichy’s contract which said he had to stop making stupid mistakes it might just make the difference.

Theo Walcott is looking for 15-20 goals in all competitions this season. A nice target, I have to say, and when you look at how he’s started the season it’s not an unreasonable one. He says he still watches videos of Thierry Henry and says he can learn from Robin van Persie. [Insert injury related joke here].

From an Arsenal point of view there’s not much else happening. Apologies for the downtime early yesterday – this is just down to the weight of people trying to download the Arsecast and we’re still trying to learn how to cope with the traffic spikes. We’ll look into ways of making sure it doesn’t happen again.

Now, my day simply cannot continue without bacon and more coffee. And painkillers. And then me sitting on the sofa going ‘Ouch’.

A full preview of the Newcastle game tomorrow.

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