Arsenal on Form: If It’s Not Broken, Don’t Fix It?
So I’m at Genesis Deluxe Cinemas waiting to see the newest installment of the ‘Fast and Furious’ series but sadly I’d have to wait till 2.45pm as I’d missed the one I wanted to watch initially. ‘So what can a brother for the best part of one hour?‘, I asked myself. Window shopping? Eat something at the food court? Get some of that Coldstone Creamery goodness? Blog about Arsenal? Then a light bulb came on in my subconscious.
There’s usually little or nothing to write about Arsenal when we are winning games. This is because those Arsene Wenger wannabes can’t get a chance to shine because we haven’t lost. Have you ever noticed how fans become analytical geniuses when we lose?
Arsene Wenger was wrong to remove Sanchez in the 63rd minute! Yes, he looked tired but he should have stayed on the pitch!!!
David Ospina is definitely not better than Wojciech Szczesny. He’s playing with a more balanced defense. Bleeeeh.
Why did Laurent Koscielny misjudge the flight of the ball to allow Harry Kane head it in. I’m very sure Szczesny would have saved that effort. Ospina was rooted to the spot. F*ck!!!
You know… The usual.
I just thought about something. The Gunners have gone on an amazing streak of victories because the manager has placed his faith on a specific set of players with some chipping in from time to time to aid the team’s cause.
Whether you believe in his abilities or not, David Ospina has brought some measure of ‘calm’ to the Arsenal defense and he has raked up his fair share of clean sheets since he became the club’s No. 1 following Szczesny’s nightmare in St. Mary’s Stadium. The Polish has featured in the FA games since Ospina took his spot and he has done great. I still believe Szczesny has a bright future ahead of him but as it stands it would take only an injury or a howler to Ospina for him to return to the starting XI.
The defense has rapidly improved in recent weeks and I’m quite happy to see how Gabriel Paulista has acquainted himself well featuring alongside Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny. However, Arsene Wenger’s dilemma currently lies in his fullback options.
I can vividly remember how fans used to fret when we see Nacho Monreal’s name on the team sheet but the Spaniard has been on another level of awesome and I’m still shocked to see how he composed himself for that strike against Manchester United in the FA Cup. As expected, Gibbs has had his injury problems but since his return to full fitness, he hasn’t been able to displace Monreal from that position.
Interestingly, Hector Bellerin has been one of the finds of the season but I’m very certain that when Debuchy reaches his optimal fitness levels, he’d return to the team ahead of the exciting Spaniard. I’m really interested to see how Wenger would handle the situation with Carl Jenkinson returning back to the team after a great spell with West Ham. At least, we know Calum Chambers is further down the pecking order.
Moving further up the pitch, Francis Coquelin has become an indispensable member of the team and this picture epitomizes everything about the lad.
Where does that leave the club’s captain, Mikel Arteta, and the aging Mathieu Flamini? Arteta has recently signed an extension to keep till 2016 but will the club retain his services after the campaign? I think not. With whispers of Morgan Schneiderlein coming this summer, Arteta’s position in the club will become untenable but I’m no Wenger and there’s no picture of lil’ ol’ Morgan wearing the Red and White of Arsenal, so I won’t comment on speculation till the move becomes a reality.
Then there’s the issue of the box-to-box midfield role that’s currently manned by last season’s player of the year, Aaron Ramsey. Santi Cazorla has been asked to put a shift there and he did a good job, but one wonders where a player like Jack Wilshere will fit in. There’s also a Wenger favourite, Abou Diaby, somewhere in the mix. With Coquelin and Cazorla regular starters in the middle while Mesut Özil has become more comfortable on the flanks, will the manager be tempted to give Wilshere a run-out at the expense of the ever-improving Ramsey?
Moving to the wings, what’s gonna happen to our own version of the Flash, Theo Walcott? He has been frozen out of the team recently but with players like Alexis Sanchez, the Ox and to some measure, Danny Welbeck, ahead of him as well as his lingering contract situation, the club might make a decision this summer.
So in the turn of the year, Arsenal has been winning game with what proves to be their strongest lineup;
Ospina; Bellerin – Mertesacker – Koscielny – Monreal; Coquelin – Ramsey; Sanchez – Cazorla – Özil; Giroud
This ensures that as long as these guys are fully fit, it won’t be easy for some players mentioned in the article to displace the players unless they’re injured or suspended.
So if it’s not broken, would you want to fix it?