By Tony Attwood
As one door closes another slams in your face, as the old Cockney saying goes. Thomas V must be feeling this, aged 25, not sure when he will play again.
I’ve got problems too, but not as bad as his.
And you don’t want to know about my problems, but I will tell you anyway. I am away from the native lands, and my laptop is playing up no end. So far I have managed to screw up Dogface’s piece by getting the pictures in the wrong order and missing one out totally, and I can’t publish Phil’s preview of the game this afternoon because the computer won’t open the file.
So, to cover the situation while I try and resolve matters further, here’s a very quick preview. If I can sort the pictures, and/or Phil’s normal preview, I will.
We play the men from the north who along with their near neighbours are struggling to stay ahead of such mighty powers as Bolton and Sunderland in the jolly EPL. So far this year they have won 2, drawn 3, lost 1 at home, scoring eight letting in six.
Last year was Billy’s greatest triumph – predicting a 1-7 victory and thus being out by only one goal. Ramsey was the culprit missing a sitter in the final seconds. Then as now Everton are for sale, no one wants to buy, and they lose millions every year.
I can’t really draw too many conclusions from the Wolverhampton game since I was sitting in the first row at pitch level – which although fun doesn’t allow the overall vision that one gets from the higher zones. My impression was that there were moments when we were given a bit of a rough ride, and the form of Cesc wasn’t 100% – but a fuller view from the TV might have given a more realistic picture. Scoring first in the opening minutes is always nerve tingling.
The thinking on our side of the ground was that Fabianski was the man of the match – looked like it from my position, although I see Chamackh got more votes in the press.
But the away support was as solid as always – our side of the ground looked sold out to me, while up in the stand opposite it certainly wasn’t, but maybe they prefer pingpong in the black country.
According to the saturday paper the Everton game isn’t sold out either and we are favourites. That should put the mocker on it all.
Here’s a team – might even have some resemblance to the team that is playing today…
Sagna, Squillaci, Djourou, Clichy
Nasri, Chamakh, Arshavin
Bendtner could play at least a bit – Lord Wenger shrugged off the journ-gibber about wanting to leave – and Gibbs should be on the bench.
Which leaves Rosicky, Wilshere, Walcott, VP. What of them?
Obviously if my line up played they would all be benchified. But I think we had more solidity after the Denilson change was made mid-week (but I stress that was from being in the ground, and not seeing the overview), which is why I have given the little fella a break.
Nasri surely will play after not starting mid week, and although I know lots of people don’t seem to like Arshavin any more, watching him from very close quarters (his attacks from the wing were right in front of me in the second half) it is extraordinary how he makes opportunities. And he hit the post (we seem to be doing that a lot).
If Theo comes in, it is for Arshavin, and maybe that is so, leaving Arshavin ready to roll full speed against the Tinies next time.
The rest of the bench will be the usual crowd who must be getting quite used to the sitting on the sidelines stuff. Lansbury, Eastmond, JET, Vela.
Anyway, I will now try and resolve the technicals before the game actually starts.
- Everton v Arsenal: a happy video, line-up and what the league table will look like after
- Everton v Arsenal: Injuries, points needed for 4th, and Arsenal the first to 100?
- Everton v Arsenal: extraordinary figures seen in the last 6 games table
- Everton v Arsenal: how this referee treats the home and away team
- Everton v Arsenal and the oddity of referee behaviour