Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Arsenal vs Man City preview

Morning all,

As I wake up and the violent wind smacked my back as I got out of bed, I would love nothing better than to remain in bed for the next few hours and just sleep. However, that is not possible and as today is a Tuesday where Arsenal play so that makes getting out of bed that little bit easier.

To be honest, only god knows why I am excited about tonight as the Arsenal have absolutely no chance in this game against big spending City. Well, that is if you read the tabloids or any other newspaper for that matter. I can understand their tags as favourites seeing as their fringe players include some people that were important players for us as well as some other very expensive purchases. Couple that with our need to rest our first XI and I think you can see why in a shootout between our reserves and theirs, they are likely to come on top.

As we all know though, football is a funny thing, particularly in the Carling Cup where we have seen many an upset. This is down to a number of reasons but the most important being it is not a priority for any major club. Hell, I don’t even think the smaller clubs care about it. They would rather rest their players to ensure that they have a full strength team for the Premier League. Much better secure the Premier League TV money than win a trophy, right?

I am not suggesting that the teams don’t try but there is always a more important fixture looming ahead for the bigger players. Perhaps that is why we have fared so well as we rarely play our best XI and as such have hungry players who have a huge opportunity. And tonight is no different. Although there are many which expect Arsene Wenger to name as strong a side as he can afford to I do not expect Wenger to stray too far from the model he has used in the past; lots of squad players supplemented by the odd first teamer in need of some match time.

Perhaps it will not look the same as it is likely to look a much older outfit, but the principles are the same. You have to realise that the Arsenal squad is now very different to the one of even a year ago. Our fringe players are now players older and far more experienced. We have Arshavin, Benayoun, Park, Chamakh, Squilaci, Rosicky and Fabianski. Just a year ago four of those players we relied on to start games for us so you can see how we have evolved. So whilst the team will be older and more experienced, something I imagine the press will spin as Wenger’s desperation to win a trophy, it is really not all too different to what we have done in the past. Now, I could be completely wrong and we could field a team consisting of Van Persie and the rest but I doubt it.

So if I am right and Wenger is naming the squad players the only real issues are in the defence as we are a little thin on the ground given the number of injuries the defence has sustained. In an ideal world Djorou and Koscienly would be rested but one if not both may have to play such is the dearth of defenders at the club at present. I expect Fabianski, Djorou, Squilacci, Miquel, Yennaris, Coquelin, Frimpong, Rosicky, Ox, Benayoun and Park all starting with Chamakh and Arshavin very likely to feature at some point.

Who do I expect to win? Not really sure, I do think that it will be tough but I see no reason we cannot beat the team put in front of us tonight and will just enjoy it to be honest.

That’ll have to do for today… We will probably get more news filtering through throughout the day regarding team news along with the rumour mill drumming up about hundred players we are not going to sign. You can tell we are getting close to January, can’t you?

Anyway I will post part 2 of the top ten either later this evening or tomorrow morning as I am sure you will all rather watch the match.


Please note I have not mentioned Nasri's return because he does not deserve my time.

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