Arsenal’s most important player this season is _______?

January 10, 2019

This question was posed on twitter by @ltarsenal and some of the replies were quite surprising, so why not have a crack at it on here while we wait for the weekend?

Runners and Riders (in no particular order)

Rob Holding

Many were surprised when Calum C went out on loan before the season started and a certain lad we bought from Bolton for a £2m was chosen to stay and develop at his home club.  His play this season has been a revelation. Cool, composed, able to bring the ball forward and with an eye for a pass, too. Some might say our defence looking decidely ropey has coincided with his absence.

Lucas Torreira

Eased in slowly frustrating Arsenal fans at the start of the season, Lucas began by making top notch contributions from the bench before getting his starting berth. Perhaps, if LBG is correct and he’s been moved further forward in Unai’s recent formations, his effectiveness has been slightly lessened when not sat right in front of the back four receiving and destroying.

Alex Lacazette

Many replies on twitter mentioned Laca. He is a fans’ favourite and certainly brings an aggressiveness and work rate which often seem responsible for lifting the whole shooting match. Less goals than Auba from perhaps more chances but he’s often won back possession from his feisty closing down (and given away a few free kicks into the bargain!).

Granit Xhaka

To some, Granit’s inclusion in this list would be the biggest shock but he does seem Unai’s first name on the teamsheet in many respects. When we are playing well, he does seem the centre of the well-oiled machine. Countless accurate passes and an ability to switch play others lack. Detractors would say ‘yes, but how many of those passes actually achieve anything’.  Then again, all teams require water carriers, ask Gilberto.

Hector Bellerin

When he’s missing from the team, you do start to realise how important he is on the right side. Still not the finest defender in the world but such a talent on the ball. Arsenal’s right flank without the Catwalk king and, to a lesser extent Micki, has been a little lacking in punch, drive and creativity.

Pierre Emerick Aubameyang

Goals from nowhere, some have suggested we’d be floating just below mid-table without Auba’s 14 goals. His strike record in October/November was simply stunning, scoring from virtually all of his shots on target. A fair few of his goals have come when he’s made an entrance off the bench. Some point out his lack of fire, Laca style, but maybe that isn’t the quality he was bought for.

I’m not sure if anyone else should be regarded as a contender.

What do you think? Could you make a case for someone not listed above.

Mesut anyone?

chas

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Mustafi or Holding – who partners the Greek Colossus – Poll?

October 16, 2018

Morning all, fellow suffering Gunners.

Back to me poll do-da to help fill the gap.

Pretty sure we’d all be pretty close now after 8 league games to picking Unai’s starting XI.

I’m by far and away the most knowledgeable on this site when it comes to attacking football, but beyond useless when it comes to defenders, so although it appalls me to admit this, I need your help.

My interest in defenders goes no further than Tony Adams, although I’m aware that when it comes to the overall defence, continuity is vital as it’s the misunderstandings that lead to more let-ins than anything else.

Sadly, and hopefully only for now, I’m having to leave Laurent out of the equation and just hope he makes a full and speedy return. He would make the poll irrelevant.

So, here we go. Same as before,  4-2-3-1. Difference today is that I’m insisting Sokratis is a starter, so you’re picking the other CB. Does Holding have a real future? If so, and it’s a close call between him and Mustafi, would that swing it? I have no idea.

mickydidit89


Who will play at Deepdale?

January 7, 2017

Preston? Never been there. Deepdale?  Never been there.  North End?  Same.  Did I ever see Tom Finney play? No. Have I ever heard of any of PNE’s players? No. Their manager, Simon Grayson …. well, I did see him play for Blackburn.

Unknown.jpeg Preston’s Finest

In other words I have no qualifications to write this pre-match other than my love for their opposition.

I love the FA Cup, always have. I love that we won it twice in the past 3 years. That said, some of my most painful memories are attached to the FAC (Wrexham 😦 ++). Is there anything as painful as losing in a Cup Final? Perhaps a kick in the crown jewels but not much else.

A loss today could be equally painful and it is not beyond the realms of possibility. Play like we did for the first 70 minutes at B’mouth and we are in peril.

Positives: Welbeck is on the bench and ready to establish himself as an Arsenal great. Nigeria didn’t qualify for the ACN so Iwobi is available for selection. Bellerin cannot play so poorly twice in a row. OG is in fine scoring form.

 

Not so Great:  We only have two fit and available MF’s. We only have Jenkinson should AW decide to give Hector a rest, though this is the level where he excels. Sanchez will be rested. Ozil is sick. Santi is out for the next few notes. Koscielny limped off at the Cherries. BFG isn’t fit yet.

I am hoping Holding gets another chance today, he is a fine prospect.  With Chambers doing very well at struggling Boro, we have two fine young CBs for the future.

Unknown-1.jpeg

My Team:

Ospina

Bellerin    Holding    Gabriel    Monreal

Ramsey    Xhaka     Iwobi

Ox   OG   Perez

Actually it is not true that I know none of Preston’s players, they have Dane in the team – the 6´7″ Simon Makienok who is a central striker. He used to play for Brondby which is a major black mark.

We can expect hoof ball from PNE. We can also expect a dreadful pitch designed to negate our silky skills. It will be a hard physical battle and let’s just hope we can leave Deepdale with a victory and no injuries.

Let it be so.

COYRRG