Daily Archives: October 5, 2011

Szczesny dominates the headlines for more reasons than one

I’ve reiterated times without number that Arsenal has been haunted with squad indiscipline, bad refereeing decisions, bad luck and mysterious injuries and I was proven right when Sagna became a victim of the last attribute in the aforementioned list.

He challenged for the ball in the air with Assou-Ekoto before landing awkwardly on his ankle and it didn’t seem really bad until I watched the replay in slow-mo and it was quite a horrible sight. The orderly came up with their stretcher and I, Arsene Wenger and the fans will be biting our fingers to know how long Sagna is going to be out of action.

While waiting for Sagna’s prognosis, I spent a long while biting my fingers. When I realized that all the 10 finger nails had been bitten off, I looked around to see if there was anyone close-by so that I could repeat that scene in Ice Age 3: The Meltdown.

Arsenal’s most consistent player in recent seasons suffered a fractured fibula and has gone through a surgery that was successful. With Farmer Emmanuel Eboue chilling somewhere in Turkey planting crops and diving in stadia like Sukru Saracoglu and the Inonu Stadium, Arsenal’s hopes will fall on the inexperienced Carl Jenkinson to hold the fort till Sagna arrives.

The youngster was quite impressive in both legs against Udinese, he wasn’t half bad in Old Trafford but Gareth Bale gave him a torrid time on Sunday. Sagna is going to be out for the best part of three months so Wenger has to make do with the young bloke with the hope that he’ll get better with each passing game.

Before writing the detailed info of all news involving Wojciech Szczesny, I’ll give a quick roundup of other Arsenal related news starting with news from the big boss himself, Arsene Wenger.

Uneasy is the head that lies the crown but Wenger’s kingdom is in disarray and shambles at the moment. He let his best princesses Francesca and Samantha leave his castle for greener pastures elsewhere and his team has gone on a downward spiral from the start.

Wenger has painfully admitted that there’s no hope for the Premier League title with just seven games gone. With the clubs from Manchester inflicting damage on every other team in the Premier League, it’s not going to be easy for them to lose four games for Arsenal to catch up.

However, there’s another manager that has decided to delve his raised eyebrow into Arsenal’s affairs. He’s the manager that delivered Chelsea their first double since the days Merlin was the chief wizard of Camelot but he was giving the boot a season later and has been replaced by a Portuguese Boa Constrictor from a Villa.

Carlo Ancelotti has questioned Arsene Wenger’s ability and even went as far as saying that he’s ready to replace him as Arsenal’s boss. The Italian has a pretty decent CV, as a player he won three Scudetti (AS Roma and Milan),  four Coppa Italia, two Champions Leagues and two Intercontinental cups while as a manager, he won one Serie A, one Club World Cup, one Coppa Italia, one Champions League, one Premier League and one FA Cup.

I’m pretty sure that the media Vultures will do their bit in making Wenger’s chair hot but I don’t see Stan Kroenke or Alisher Usmanov giving Wenger the boot anytime soon. Another season without a trophy might….

I’m sure that the name Denilson has faded with the wind at the Emirates but the Brazilian has come under the spotlight again when the Sao Paulo faithful demanded that he should be sent packing after his recent row on Twitter.

Denilson packaged himself in a knapsack and swam over the Atlantic to his native Samba land because he labeled Arsenal as a trophy-less outfit and he declared himself a winner. The bloke did more damage than Thomas Gravesen and Lee Cattermole by getting two red cards in his first three games.

Denilson was criticized for his petulance with a series of angry messages on Twitter, but his online row escalated this week, after he branded fans who moaned about manager Adílson Batista as ‘very, very annoying’.

He and the fan engaged themselves in a Twitfight but I didn’t bother to bring my Twitter popcorn and 3-D glasses because I didn’t know Portuguese but Denilson tried to claim he did not mean his comments in a negative way, only to once again rile up the Sao Paulo faithful.

It appears Denilson has found no more support in his native Brazil than he had in North London, with a section of fans now demanding manager Batista never selects him again. This was a player that amassed over 50 games in the 2008/09 but he chickened away because he couldn’t challenge Jack Wilshere for a place in the squad.

I don’t give a hoot what he does in Brazil, Iraq, Chechnya or Kandahar. Denilson is the definition of the term “past tense” so I’m pretty sure that many gooners won’t break sweat over his recent predicament.

To round it all up, Arsenal legend Lee Dixon says that the players defend like school boys, the world’s best left-footed Chimp told the media Vultures that Arsenal is damaged after the loss of the midfield duo of Francesca and Samantha while Alex Song believes that the next five games are going to be important.

Wojciech Szczesny is gradually becoming a household name in Arsenal Football Club. He was first mentioned in the tabloids when he broke both forearms in November 2008 while lifting weights but the likes of Manuel Almunia, Lukasz Fabianski and Vito Mannone were clearly above him.

Since his emergence last season, Szczesny has not looked back and Fabianski is currently Arsenal’s number two again after fighting hard to win the jersey from Almunia before injury paved the way for the younger Pole.

Szczesny has been very excellent for Arsenal this season but he had his first horror moment sice the Carling Cup final when Kyle Walker released a surface-to-goal missile that was enough to hand the hosts all 3 points. Szczesny was quick to apologize for that error:

“I didn’t see the handball, I thought he controlled it and finished very well. It was a good finish.”

“The second goal I was very disappointed in myself – I shouldn’t get beaten from that kind of distance so I will take that myself.

“There was a lot of movement on the ball and I reacted too late. I got a touch on it but it wasn’t strong enough. I blame myself for the second one but other than that I didn’t think the team deserved to lose the game.”

He talked about his profound faith in Arsenal and he also reiterated that the Gunners are stronger than Tottenham:

“You cannot make such a statement after a couple of months after our poor start to the season or after just one game, I think Spurs are a great club and they have shown today that they can play really good football, but are they better than Arsenal? I don’t really think so.”

He also believes that the Gunners will find some consistency soon:

“We have to improve our performances and then we just want to give ourselves the best chance of finishing high in the table, getting into the top four, and possibly winning the championship.”

“We have lost four games and Manchester United and Manchester City have lost none so we are behind at the moment but I believe every single team in the league will have a period somewhere where they play poorly.”

“We had a poor start but I think we can kick off the season after the international break. Hopefully we can catch up. I hope we can do it as soon as possible. The fans deserve better.”

Szczesny is a player that’s never afraid to say what’s on his mind and he went a further mile to declare that he’s like to be the club’s captain someday:

“I feel that when I say something, everyone listens to me. More so on the field than in the dressing room, but that’s more important I think. In the national team as well as at the club, teammates respect me. I’m not saying I’m the only leader, but I feel I am one of them.”

 “I want to be the captain of the team. I feel that I am able to take on that responsibility. I always wanted to be captain and if I ever get that honour, I will gladly put on the armband.”

Most goalies become beasts when they lead their teams. That added responsibility is reflected on their play and they always emerge as the best players in their clubs.

Oliver Ganges Kahn was a colossus when he led Bayern and Germany; Jose Chilavert was renowned as one of the best penalty stoppers of all time, Rogerio Ceni is a set-piece demigod for Sao Paulo while Igor Akinfeev is one of the most sought after goalies in Europe.

Writing about sought after, Arsenal’s hardened transfer window pests FC Barcelona are back in Arsenal’s business and this time Wojciech Szczesny has become their agenda and the Pole hasn’t ruled out a move.

I guess you’ll know what will happen next.

Please don’t forget that the voting sequence for the awards for September isn’t over yet.

The polls will close on Friday.