13 responses

  1. nicky

    1. Will the game be shown on TV?
    2. Will you give us a catering report?

  2. Andrew Crawshaw

    I would say that RB will feature either Debuchy or Chiori Johnson. Chambers will likely feature at CB. Xhaka unlikely to feature as I think he is still on post Euro holiday. Coquelin likely to start as DM. Jeff quite likely to get a start (ex Lens playerI think). Akpom, Theo and the Ox also likely to start I would think.

    Other youngsters who have been training with the first team this week are, Krystian Bielik (CB/DM), Chris Willock (wing), Stephy Mavididi (striker), Matt Macey (GK), Marcus McGuane (DM), Gedion Zelalem (AM), Reiss Nelson (MF).

    Some of these players may also feature. Gedion I would expect to be a definite for the USA trip.

  3. Andrew Crawshaw

    Off topic but congratulations to the ladies who beat Chelsea 2-1 yesterday. The Chelsea goal coming from a horrible mix up between Alex Scott and keeper Sari van Veenendaal which saw a 40 yard back poss roll into the net. A header from a left side corner by Vicky Losada in the 45th minute and a good finish by Danielle van de Donk in the 84th minute ensured that we gained all three points. We are now just 2 behind Chelsea in third place.


  4. Gord

    Lens is an industrial town (mining), and one report on local gastronomy is:

    > It’s not a gastro town but the food here is good and hearty, typical northern fare with dishes such as potjevleesch (chicken, rabbit, pork and veal in jelly) served cold with chips

    Which is apparently a Flemish dish. Another website seems to say the area is also known for Welsh Rarebit. Some kind of tart (pie) and a cheese (Maroilles). They seem to think they can make chocolate in the region.

    There are apparently good beers there.

    I found chocolate for Walter’s wife, and it seems they have sausage in the region for Walter. “”Andouillettes”” or “”andouilles””. The “lette” is in Arras and Cambrai. Aire-sur-La-Lys has the “ille”. In Lens itself, it would seem the biggest recommendations are for seafood.

    This second name, seems to be similar to a kind of sausage endemic to Louisiana in the southern USA.

    Apparently the Canadian Vimy Ridge memorial is close by.

  5. Josif

    Nice pre-preview, Walter. 🙂

    Lens… Ah, I always remember how they knocked us out of Champions League 1998-99 Group Stage as we were out after that Wembley defeat in penultimate match of the group stage. In the reverse fixture that was the very first Champions League match for Arsenal under Arsene Wenger, we had a 1:0 lead against Lens thanks to Overmars’ opener but the hosts equalized deep into injury time through Tony Vairelles.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mz9nccKUzno Here is a video from the game.

    According to various sources, Vairelles got convicted for attempted murder of a bouncer in a night club and spent five months in a prison between 2011 and 2012.

    Just one more bit about that Lens title in 1998 – the runners-up were Robert Pires-inspired FC Metz (they had also struggled in the lower tiers of French football after 1997-98).

    Speaking of struggling, I have to add something to Walter’s precise conclusion about Ligue 1 being the most boring league. I think that no other country in Europe has seen so many champions from the last two decades going down at some point. Nantes, Monaco, Auxerre, Lens… They all had won Ligue 1 since 1994-95 before tasting Ligue 2.

  6. Josif

    I forgot to add important part (it happens to people who like digressions as much as I do):

    Wenger didn’t have to wait too long for his revenge on Lens as we faced the French side in the UEFA Cup semifinals 1999-2000. We won in both legs (1:0, 2:1) and progressed to the final.

  7. Usama Zaka

    Takuma Asano is part of the Japanese Olympic squad and is sure to be busy in the Olympics until the end of August.


  8. nicky

    Thanks for the gastro report on the Lens area. Sounds quite drooling. 😉

  9. WalterBroeckx

    I think that Lens was partly part of Flanders once before the French added it to France. Lille (Rijsel was the original Flemish name) certainly was. So seeing a Flemish named dish is no real surprise for me. The region was called “Frans Vlaanderen” (French Flemish) before the French renamed it to Pas de Calais. For some reason the French didn’t like the name Flemish that much…. Les Flandres Françaises was the French name before that I think.

  10. WalterBroeckx

    I will try to add a catering report of course 😉

  11. Norman14

    Hoping to see quite a bit of Granit in the pre-season.

  12. Leon

    There’s a good chance that Rob Holding will sign this week.

  13. Menace

    Well Walter, we will be watching Arsenal through the lens while you watch Lens play Arsenal. Enjoy the game & remember to have an extra plate of Flemish ‘nosh’ for us.

    My best wishes to Arsenal Belgium & your family (specially your wife). Stay safe & well.

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