Good morning to you, welcome to another Friday. I appear to have picked up some kind of cold, so apologies in advance for my croakiness in today’s Arsecast.
Once again the manager held his press conference on a Thursday, thus completely messing up my brain’s ability to know what day of the week it is. What’s wrong with Fridays? That’s what I’m used to. Change is weird and scary and I wish they’d stop it.
There’s no real team news ahead of Sunday’s trip to Norwich. Aaron Ramsey remains in the squad, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain might be back, but apart from that we count on the players that did the job in midweek. Not least of which is Alexis Sanchez who won’t be rested even though Arsene Wenger says he has a slight hamstring issue:
I take information, especially from the medical people who know him and treat him everyday and after, we look at his overall recovery as well. When there are alarming signs, we want to make the right decision at the right moment but as long as the guys are confident, they score goals – it is always difficult to rest them.
His resistance is remarkable. What is also remarkable is that he goes to South America to play, he comes back on Thursday night and on Saturday he can play without a problem, even if he’s jet-lagged.
He really is an incredible physical specimen as somebody once said somewhere. The manager also compared him to a wild animal, saying:
His style is very explosive, it’s a very committed style. When they go, they go. They are like the lion. He has to catch the animal in the first 200 metres. If he doesn’t get there, he’s dead afterwards. They are these kind of killers. When they go, it is to kill and after, they have to stop.
I mean, lions are great. I’ll admit that in the big cat world I’d go Tiger #1 and Lion #2, but that’s just my personal preference. And who doesn’t look at a lion and think that they’re anything other than impressive and wonderful creatures? But not all lions have happy endings. Sure, you have your Simbas, who have all the adventures and japes with a warthog and a singing meerkat, but then you also have your Mufasas too.
And what happened to him? That’s right, his manager played the shite out of him and he ended up as a cloud lion and everybody cried. That’s what we’re dealing with here. Hopefully Alexis has a problem free philosophy, but if he has a jealous brother out there, voiced by Jeremy Irons, I think we know how this is all going to end. #ripcloudalexis
In the wake of the Coquelin injury, Arsene was asked about potential new recruits in January, and he said:
We are in a position where we want to do something. If I find the right quality, I will do it.
He also talked about his love of a bargain, pointing out quite rightly that pretty much everyone loves a bargain. Pointing to a £2.5m Patrick Vieira as somebody who ticked that particular box, he also applied the same to the much more expensive Mesut Ozil:
We spent £40m on Ozil but I still consider it a bargain because the player is top quality and the priority has to be the quality of the player.
There was further praise for the German, with the manager clearly pleased that Ozil is very actively looking to score more often, evidenced by his performance against Zagreb on Tuesday night:
He played before like he was not too much obsessed by goals and more by providing, and I think he has a much better balance in his game now, giving, assisting and scoring. At the start, in the first season, there was a lot of scepticism around him. I think the quality of his performances have turned opinions. He now has the support of everybody who loves Arsenal.
I mean, if you can’t enjoy watching him, you’re essentially dead inside. The same kind of people that don’t like puppies probably don’t like Mesut Ozil, and we all know the world would be a better place without them. For his own part, the Arsenal number 11 says he doesn’t need goals to fuel his ego, he’s aware he could do more in that regard, but for him the effectiveness of the team is still the most important thing. He’s a dude.
Time now for this week’s Arsecast, and on the show I’m joined by Dan Levy to look back at the Dinamo Zagreb win in midweek, the sublime form of Mesut Ozil, Joel Campbell’s contribution, and our potential qualification to the knock-out stages of the Champions League. There’s also some Amaury Bischoff PI, more chat about doping after UEFA’s response to Arsene Wenger’s comments, your chance to win goodies from Savile Rogue and Percy Nobleman, and all the usual waffle.
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Remember, if you do want to do some Christmas shopping early, you can get 10% off everything from Savile Rogue by using the code 10ARSEBLOG at check-out.
And apparently today is a day when everybody puts everything on sale, so the Arseblog merchandise is heavily discounted, so if you fancy one of the t-shirts,
a *boilk* mug or whatever else is there, check it out and use the code BF2015 to get the prices. Ooops, mugs not on the discount, only the clothing, but get a mug anyway. It makes your coffee taste better, honestly.
Right then, any news throughout the day we’ll have over on Arseblog News, for further reading you can check out Tim Stillman’s column about the Coquelin situation, and the Gent will be here later with his weekly review.
More from me tomorrow, until then.