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Ah finally back to football: not everyone is back but there is some good news.

By Walter Broeckx

After the boring interlul matches we finally can have something to look forward too.  Arsenal players have flown in from all over the world and we have a match to play on Saturday.

Alas, what I had hoped for hasn’t materialised. I had hoped for a return of Ramsey and The Ox but Wenger today in his press conference said that both would be not available yet. There is one player returning and that is Bellerin. So at least one of my favourite players has come back from injury.

For the moment I am not aware of any news about the possible return of Ramsey and The Ox. Is it a question of days or a week(s?) Let us hope that we find out as soon as possible.  They might be in touching distance of being completely fit but maybe the medical staff is not prepared to take any risks with them for the moment.

That would be a wise thing to do. The season is still long and if leaving them out for another week or so would mean they would be more (one cannot exclude an injury completely of course) injury free for the rest of the season then this is the time to keep them out of the team.

We are playing against WBA this Saturday and although you want to have the full team ready, one must accept this will not be possible for most of the matches.

WBA is not an easy place to go too. We mostly have close encounters with them and have to dig deep to get some points over there. But we also have some good memories as we secured our place in the CL at their ground in the last match of the season. The last match of Pat Rice on the bench with Wenger. We all remember at one moment Wenger even laying his head on Rice his shoulder after WBA almost scored (or was it us missing a chance? )

But it might not be an easy place to go but we sure should aim to get the 3 points there. Something we always aim for in fact but even without The Ox and Ramsey we should be good enough to get the 3 points.

With only Alexis being heavily loaded in the last 14 days some of the other players will have had a nice rest. Özil being one of the most important players to have had a good rest. Let us hope that he has fresher legs now and that he can guide us to a few goals.

Next Tuesday we play our next match already against Dinamo Zagreb in the CL. I do hope that the players ignore this match completely. For me the PL is the most important thing at the moment. We must make sure that from now till the match against Manchester City we keep our place at the top. A match against City in December with the two teams who are 1st and 2nd would be great.  Certainly as there will be a group of Arsenal Belgium in the stadium for that match.

But in order to be there at the top we need to win the matches till that day. Some of the other teams at the top are playing each other in the next weeks and so we need to make sure that we capitalise on any dropped points from those teams.

If all goes well one could even dream of making a little gap between ourselves and some rivals by the end of December.  Manchester City playing Liverpool this weekend might result in both dropping points.  The week after that Manchester City will be playing Southampton and that could be tricky match for City as they will have to play  in the CL also next week. Note that Manchester City is playing at home twice and Arsenal will be away twice in a week we play in the CL.  In that weekend Leicester play at home against Manchester United (who also have to play away twice – SAF has gone I think) and that will surely make one or both losing points.

The Tiny Totts play at home twice. Against West Ham and against Chelsea. Tricky fixtures for them but West Ham is rather unlucky to have lost Payet for a few months.

With Arsenal playing away twice in what on paper looks winnable matches we might take some advantage of the other results. BUT the most important thing will be to make sure that the team is really focussed to get the needed results in the matches in the PL.

And as we know there are no easy fixtures in the PL. We have a reasonably good away form this season so far.  We played 6 of our 12 matches away and we won 5 of them and lost only one to Mike Dean. When we have played 14 PL matches we will have played 8 matches away from home. So we will have played more matches away from home than most teams. Something that we might benefit from later in the season when we will have more matches at home at some stage in the season.

Apart from the little disappointment about The Ox and Ramsey not being fit yet I am confident that the team will work their socks off to take the 3 points back to London. But hey, Hector Bellerin is back. Can he not play up front with Debuchy behind him for this match? I sure would give it a try. But well I’m not Wenger and I don’t think he will listen to me. But he sure could cause problems for WBA with his pace and skills.

Anniversaries

20 November 1999: Arsenal beat Middlesbrough 5-1.  Overmars got three and Berkgamp two, to make it four wins and a draw in the last five.  In the next match, Thierry Henry scored for Arsenal for the first time.

20 November 2010: Arsenal lost 2-3 to Tottenham (Nasri and Chamakh scoring) making it two home defeats out of two in the month.  However away from home Arsenal won three in a row.

The Untold Books

Woolwich Arsenal the club that changed football, is now available on Kindle at £9.99.  For more details and to buy a copy please click here or go to Amazon Kindle and search for Woolwich Arsenal.

 

13 comments to Ah finally back to football: not everyone is back but there is some good news.

  • para

    West Brom and Pullis. Apparently “bus” 🙂 defending so quick, precise ball control is required from us and the finishing has to be immaculate as we want no bad surprises.

    A fairly depleted team a.t.m and some players should be looking to continually perform well to seal their spot in the team. All in all, a winnable game if we as Walter says are focused and want to win it.

    COYG.

  • Jedidiah Ofere

    True, of the injured players, only Bellerin will be available for saturday. Ramsey and the Ox will be available on Monday. Walcott will be available in a few weeks from now.

  • nicky

    In the run-up to Christmas, the New Year and the January Transfer Window, the thoughts of all supporters of Arsenal FC will naturally turn to an assessment of our wounded, their return dates and whether there will be any mid-term signings.
    Is our current injury list any worse than (say) last year? Has the recent spate of internationals had an adverse effect on our players?
    And has last week’s atrocity in Paris seriously affected any of our French
    contingent?
    A lot to take in.
    Arsene and his professional staff will know some of the answers straightaway. And we supporters, home and away, can play an important supporting role by giving 100% backing at every opportunity to whoever wears the
    shirt. 😉

  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    This is another opportunity in the offing for Arsenal to singularly top the table and not miss it again as they did when they failed to beat Tottenham Hotspur to all the 3 points that were on stake a fortnight ago. Arsenal have the Gunners capacity on ground right now to beat Tony Pulis WBA side to all the 3 points that will be at stake at the Hawthorns this Saturday afternoon.
    As I am thinking and I believe other Gooners are also thinking too, Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool side may get a result against Man City at the Etihad. But to be on the safer side, it’s better the Boss ORGANISE VERY WELL(that’s the key) his Gunners team to disorganise the said Tony Pulis’ organised Baggies team and hit them comprehensively in a manner the Baggies would not have expected to hit so hard by the Gunners. @Full Time plus the added time, WBA 0-4 AFC.

  • SamuelAkinsolaAdebosin

    This is another opportunity in the offing for Arsenal to singularly top the table and not miss it again as they did when they failed to beat Tottenham Hotspur to all the 3 points that were on stake a fortnight ago. Arsenal have the Gunners capacity on ground right now to beat Tony Pulis WBA side to all the 3 points that will be at stake at the Hawthorns this Saturday afternoon.
    As I am thinking and I believe other Gooners are also thinking too, Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool side may get a result against Man City at the Etihad. But to be on the safer side, it’s better the Boss ORGANISE VERY WELL(that’s the key) his Gunners team to disorganise the said Tony Pulis’ organised Baggies team and hit them comprehensively in a manner the Baggies would not have expected to be that hit so hard by the Gunners. @Full Time plus the added time, WBA 0-4 AFC.

  • andy bishop

    I agree..ramsey is missed..and the champions league once again has served a financial purpose. We have a real chance at the league and that should be our priority

  • Tom

    Walter

    “Hoping the players ignore Dinamo Zagreb game completely”

    And how do you propose they go about doing that?

    Do they stop running, passing, shooting and defending?

    No player takes to the pitch with intentions to give less than a 100%.
    When they do give less, it is usually because of other factors like fitness issues, fatigue or injuries.

    What you are proposing should happen can only come from the manager by his team selection, and I don’t believe Arsene Wenger will do anything other than go for it now that Arsenal have put themselves in this peculiar position.

    Losing to Zagreb at home would be a huge PR problem and if that were to happen, Arsenal FC would take a pasting from fans, supporters and the media and rightfully so.

    Unless of course you are only joking, in which case ignore my comments, but if you are seriously proposing this, it surely must be one of the worst ideas I have ever heard regarding match strategy.

  • WalterBroeckx

    Tom,

    I thought it would be clear that I was talking about the WBA match and that they should not be thinking at all about the CL match. If they would be 0-5 up at half time, then they could ease up a bit and play the next 45 mins with Zagreb in their mind.

    Of course once the Zagreb match start I will want Arsenal to win it. As do for each match. But holding back at WBA because of the Zagreb match that is coming up would be stupid.

  • Tom

    Walter
    Totally misunderstood your meaning.
    My bad 🙂

  • Menace

    Walter we have to be very careful of the PGMO official as WBA have had some special treatment. It is not that they are a bad team but that they get favourable decisions more often than many other mid table teams. Every match for Arsenal is important just as it is for every other team. Our success depends on being better than all the personnel on the field of play. If we have the gift of being a few goals ahead we must not relax but continue to score without physical risk. Looking forward to as many victories for our boys & ladies through this season.

  • WalterBroeckx

    A Pulis thing then Menace? I seem to remember from our research a few years ago that Stoke was very favoured by refs certainly at their place… Could it be that Pulis is what links them together?

  • WalterBroeckx

    Ramsey being not in the team has probably more to do with the fact that his wife gave birth to a little boy today than with a real fitness issue.

    Congratulations Aaron!!!