By Bulldog Drummond
As we saw in the last piece, Arsenal are now top of the league when measured across the last six games, but in case you missed it I’ll run it again…
Here’s one other bit of trivial: this is Mr Arteta’s 100th game in charge of Arsenal.
And because of this we find one of the most stunning bits of journalistic bombast that I have ever seen in the build-up to a game, as the Football London site says, (and believe me this is an absolute quote).
“…with a near full-strength squad at his disposal, Arteta will be presented with a selection headache ahead of naming his lineup to face the Hornets.
“Luckily for the Spaniard, football.london’s Arsenal writers Kaya Kaynak and Tashan Deniran-Alleyne are on hand to provide their say on who should start at the Emirates.”
Mind you, not to be outdone, the Givemesport website has a piece on the most overrated players ever in the Premier League. At number 8 is Thierry Henry. Obviously, the writer has not been looking at the Arsenal History Society new Day by Day section of its video collection: An Arsenal video for (almost) every day of the year in order. There are some rather amazing pics of Henry in that, although you do have to flip through the days to find them.
(Mind you I have to mention that feature as Tony did the work.)
A few final bits and pieces on the facts before the game. We are, as you will know, top of the league in terms of the last six. Interestingly, the media won’t mention that but they were all over the fact that we were bottom of the league after three games. Odd that.
But Mr Arteta has had another run as manager like this – and that was last January / February during which we won seven and lost two.
And not only is this Mr Arteta’s 100th league game, one more goal will also be our 100th league goal with him in charge. But that ratio is rising all the time.
Interestingly we play to score in the first half – no one has scored higher than our 75% of goals in the first half. (This is all part of the no-tackles revolution which really still does seem to catch the opposition by surprise, although you’d think they knew about it now).
Watford have failed to score in any of their league defeats this season but instead picked up 12 goals in their other four games. But this was somewhat aided by five against Everton – and each one of those wins has come under the guidance of a different manager.
And another – one more clear sheet will actually be an Arsenal club record, reaching as it does 21.
I’ve already given a bit of a run down on the possible team and virtually everyone is in agreement.
We’ll have the same one as the Guardian gave us in the line up provided by Who Scored
Tomiyasu White Gabriel Tavares
Saka Lacazette Smith Rowe
The Evening Standard rambles on a bit but they reach the same conclusion, but the Short Fuse does give us the variant approach…
Tierney White Gabriel Tavares
Saka Odegaard Smith Rowe
And they kindly tell us those who are waiting on the beach:
- Bernd Leno
- Nuno Tavares
- Rob Holding
- Calum Chambers
- Mohamed Elneny
- Ainsley Maitland-Niles
- Gabriel Martinelli
- Alex Lacazette
That variant approach does turn up in one or two other sites, but those are the only variations. The vast major however leave out Tierney, giving him one more weak to recover, and prefer Lacazette to Odegaard out of awareness for the Watford weaknesses at the back.
- Arsenal beating Watford – six great videos
- Arsenal preparing for another step up the league table this weekend.
- Arsenal v Watford. Comparing the performances, and that issue of home and away
- Arsenal v Watford: have Arsenal “finally got going” (the media awakens)
- Arsenal v Watford: past games and a nice video from 2020.
- Arsenal v Watford. Arsenal top of the league across the last six games
- Arsenal v the team that will present a giant toothbrush to our captain
- Arsenal squad for Europa League game
- The abuse of female footballers is appalling, but there is a wider context
- Why Arsenal v Glimt might be tougher than the game against Tottenham
- Is the team that passes the most, the team that gets the best results?