By Bulldog Drummond
As is becoming the norm now, by lunchtime before an Arsenal evening match there is no preview in the mainstream media, rather more articles looking back to previous games. So up to us to come up with something other than the story doing the rounds that Jack Wilshere is off to Juventus.
According to the Gunnerstown website Östersund means wheelbarrow, which I found a bit confusing. My knowledge of Swedish is limited, but I thought wheelbarrow was skottkärra. Breaking down the word as far as I know Öster means East and sund means sound, but hopefully Arsenal have arrived at the right place for the game.
Mind you the same site also says that the Vikings invented the wheelbarrow, but my wheelbarrow encyclopedia tells me that the text of the “Records of the Three Kingdoms” which was compiled for the emperor by Chen Shou between 233 and 297 AD, puts Zhuge Liang as the inventor.
Worse, by and large the Viking Era is generally considered to be from the 8th century to 11th century, so I am not too sure about that claim either. But then the site suggests that Nacho Monreal should play centre forward in tonight’s game and so finally the penny dropped and I realised I had been had. Nice one guys; always willing to admit when I’d been got.
Especially when it gives me a chance to show off my incredibly basic a) Swedish, b) knowledge of Chinese history and c) my rather greater knowledge of the Vikings as there is a TV series about them on Netflix.
And it was all a huge amount better than the Daily Cannon’s headline: “It’s snow joke”. Oh for goodness sake.
The question is, how does the line up work?
We all know the key people who are out, and to that list I would add Ramsey, who is, I think recovering, but being given more time to make sure he is not rushed back and so has a relapse. He was on the plane (if I have read the message aright) but I don’t think he will play. Maybe he is there to give support and encouragement. Maybe he just likes the cold.
Those NOT on the plane seem to be
- Wilshere, Koscielny, and Cech
So I am going to go for a back three of central defenders with two wing backs outside them, not least because the opposition tend to play with a back five (although sometimes can change).
Mkhitaryan Welbeck Ozil
Kolasinac Monreal Mustafi Chambers Bellerin
In reserve on the snow covered beach I think I would pick
Holding, Maitland-Niles, Iwobi, Nketiah, Nelson, Mavropanos, Macey
There are however some writers who are going for a younger side, particularly one with Holding and Chambers on from the start but I suspect the fact that we have no game at the weekend means we will aim to go for a decent lead from this game, then play a younger, less experienced team in the match at the Arsenal Stadium, and then have the full group of players except Mkhitaryan (who is of course cup tied) play in the league cup final.
- Is our record in Europe that bad? Is playing in the Europa such a climb down? Is it cold?
- Sweden match uncertain as temporal anomaly hits Arsenal plane and entire squad replaced.
- Arsenal in Sweden: dealing with injuries in a meaningful and sensible way
- Östersund away: the squad and the weather forecast: it might be worth wrapping up.
- Arsenal the most penalised by refs among the current top four teams
- Mykhaylo Mudryk now listed in 17 different articles as coming to Arsenal!
- Arsenal attacking problems… what attacking problems?
- Men’s football returns at last: Arsenal in action this afternoon
- Is the injury to Gabriel Jesus equivalent to the assault on Eduardo in 2008?