By Tony Attwood
Being in Australia, as I still am for a few more days, I am fairly dependent on news from Untold and the newspapers on line to follow football.
Today, I read in the Daily Mirror “After Lincoln and Millwall upset the odds in Saturday’s cup ties, the internet’s many comedians turned their attention to Arsenal’s clash at Sutton”
So I scroll down to find the joke and find myself looking at
“At which bank do you have a personal everyday transaction, savings, or term deposit account?”
Now I must admit I didn’t find that very funny, so I meandered around a bit and eventually realised that no, this was not a surreal answer to the question above but a question I must answer to have the privilege of reading their commentary. I chose not to. I mean it is bad enough having to read newspaper fake football news for Untold, but to have to answer a question before I am allowed to? The Mirror is laughing at my reflection. Or the other way around.
Anyway, no one wants to talk about the last round of the FA Cup because, hush, don’t tell anyone, Arsenal won. Which is why we are in the FA again. I think the media would prefer us to think that Arsenal got here through a couple of byes – the opposition not turning up that sort of thing.
Anyway, here are a few snippets from the last FA Cup match Arsenal played.
- Theo Walcott scored his fifth Arsenal hat-trick in the match v Southampton, and was the first Arsenal player to score a hat trick in the cup since March 2011. That previous explooit came from Nicklas Bendtner against Leyton Orient.
- Danny Welbeck scored and assisted in Southampton for the first time in the same game since September 2014 against Aston Villa.
- Arsenal won an away game by five clear goals for the first time since August 2009 That was the league opener against Everton – the one in which the TV cameras had set up shots of Everton’s ex managers and players who were there, and kept running the shots leaving the commentators to say what a tragedy it was that they had to be there for this. No one mentioned Arsenal’s brilliance because the prepared scripts didn’t include it. The TV station (Sultana I think it was called) went bust a little later.
- Lucas Perez has been involved in eight goals in eight starts for Arsenal in all competitions (five goals, three assists) and assisted Danny Welbeck’s first goal in this game. That really is a wholly remarkable record.
- Theo has scored seven goals in his last four away FA Cup matches. That’s quite good too.
All of which gives us the idea that Theo and Lucas should play in this game.
But I get ahead of myself. Let’s consider the Sutton team. Obviously the normal details that we might have in match previews are not available, but we might care to think about Sutton United’s top scorers
So their top six ranked scorers have a total of 35 give or take a few as I don’t have a calculator in Oz and my phone is on re-charge.
According to the league table I think we are still the top scoring team, but that can’t be right because we are a total shambles and absolute rubbish and it must be because, being in Australia I am holding it upside down. But one can only look at the figures…
|5||Lucas Pérez Martínez||3||0||1||2||6|
Our top six and again this is going to be a fair old approximation what with everything being upside down…
But then Alexis probably won’t play. And 66 is the first two thirds of the mark of the devil so we most certainly are utterly doomed. Doomed!!!
However we must cover the injury situation. According to EPL Index the situation with Sutton is
Sutton United do not have any injury worries and their manager Paul Doswell can choose from a full squad. Sutton have four former Arsenal players on their books and each of them will be looking to make a statement on Monday night. Craig Eastmond has completed his three-game ban in midweek and is free to play against his former club.
Bleacher report is also fairly generalised…
Expect him [the manager] to keep faith with a lineup as close as possible to the team that beat Leeds in the previous round.
Here is the PL chart. You will see that as the media tell us daily Arsenal has a constant injury crisis. Actually have you noticed they have stopped say that because now they have something else to beat us with.
|#||TEAM||TOTAL INJURIES||LATEST PLAYER INJURED||INJURY|
|1||Hull City||10||D Mbokani||Illness|
|3||Southampton||7||S Boufal||Ankle Injury|
|6||Stoke City||6||P Bardsley||Knock|
|7||Crystal Palace||6||S Dann||Hamstring|
|8||State Aid United||6||A Cresswell||Dead Leg|
|9||Manchester U||5||H Mkhitaryan||Illness|
|10||Manchester C||5||A Kolarov||Knock|
|11||Watford||5||C Kabasele||Calf Strain|
|14||Tiny Totts||4||H Kane||Knee Injury|
|15||Swansea City||4||N Dyer||Achilles|
Physioroom has our injuries as Lucas, Koscielny (both hamstrings), Ramsey (calf) and Santi. But curiously, although we all know that hamstrings mean don’t do nothing for a couple of weeks, they say both players are only a minor doubt. I think Lucas will play if he is fit, but Kos will be rested.
In the match against Southampton (which I note the media is refraining from mentioning, what with us not just winning but winning 0-5 and playing amazing football) we put out this team…
Bellerín Mustafi Holding Gibbs
Oxlade-Chamberlain Reine-Adelaide Maitland-Niles
Walcott Pérez Welbeck
This was the beached bunch: Mertesacker, Gabriel, Sánchez, Iwobi, Monreal, Jenkinson, Martinez.
And here’s a comment, typical of that floating around several of the fake news outlets:
Mathieu Debuchy is set to be thrown back into Arsenal’s starting line-up for the Gunners’ clash with Sutton United in the FA Cup on Monday.
That from the Metro. You will note: “thrown back into”. As if the whole thing is chaos, no one knows anything, Arsenal are bottom of the league, and it was Arsenal who were beaten by Bradford in the FA Cup, not Chelsea. (And yes of course Arsenal were beaten by Bradford in the League Cup on penalties, so let’s slip that one in and keep the Chelsea image pure).
I don’t know if the Debuchy thing is true, but assuming not we could do this…
Gabriel Paulista, Rob Holding, Per Mertesacker, Nacho Monreal;
Mohamed Elneny, Ainsley Maitland-Niles;
Lucas Perez, Jeff Reine-Adelaide, Theo Walcott;
Beached we would have Gibbs, Coquelin, Martinez, Giroud, Mustafi, Jenkinson, Iwobi.
But as always, it’s a guess and anyway I’m downside up.
Arsenal History Books on Kindle
The novel “Making the Arsenal” by Tony Attwood which describes the events of 1910, which created the modern Arsenal FC, is now available for the first time on Kindle. Full details are here.
Also available on Kindle, “Woolwich Arsenal: the club that changed football” the only comprehensive history of the rise of Arsenal as a league club, and the attempts to destroy the club, from within and without. For full details please see here.
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