Daily Archives: December 9, 2016
It’s another weekend and I’m looking forward to some Premier League action tomorrow! I know I’d miss most of the Saturday’s games because of a wedding I’m scheduled to attend but that the fun part in being in some BlackBerry groups like Gooner Daily, that would keep you updated all the way. I love that lot!
With the game against Stoke coming up tomorrow in front of the Emirates faithful, the feel good factor is back with the team scoring nine goals in their last two outings. It’s even more fun knowing that a goal can come from any position on the side, which is hugely encouraging, unlike some sides that leave the goalscoring burden for a player or two.
There have been a lot of injuries that disrupted the team this season and one can look no further than the influential Santi Cazorla that had a successful surgery and he’d be looking forward to a full recovery. The optimists believe he could be back in contention as early as March, but knowing Arsenal and the way our injury situation could be, I’d throw caution to the wind and give Santi enough time to recuperate before getting back to full fitness. In his absence, the likes of Granit Xhaka, Mohamed Elneny and Aaron Ramsey can do a good job in the heart of Arsenal’s midfield.
There is good news on the injury front as the manager confirmed that Per Mertesacker, Hector Bellerin and the forgotten forward, Danny Welbeck, are back in training, so they will be in contention to join the side ahead of the vigorous festive period where the games come thick and fast. The club’s captain has kicked the ball just once this season, then suffered a knee injury that has sidelined him for the best part of four months, but in Shkodran Mustafi, Gabriel Paulista and the ever-impressive Rob Holding, Mertesacker’s absence hasn’t been felt at all. Many fans even feel that it would be very difficult for the BFG to return to the starting XI. I’m pleased to know that a player of his immense qualities and leadership will be available for selection once again, so the onus is on the manager to find a way to integrate him back to the side. It’s worth noting that the Kostafi combination has been a colossus at the back.
Hector Bellerin is a player that has grown from strength to strength in the team, and his appearance in the Team of the Year last season was a testament of how improved he had been. Since taking the mantle after Matt Debuchy suffered an unfortunate injury, Bellerin has not looked back and he has excelled under the tutelage of Arsene Wenger. He suffered an ankle injury for the Spanish youth side in the last international break, and the team looked to Carl Jenkinson to fill in the void, as Debuchy continued to struggle with fitness. However, the young Englishman suffered ‘confidence issues’ and the boss had resorted to Gabriel to put a shift there while Bellerin works his way back to full fitness. He also signed a new contract recently that would keep him at the club for quite some time, and that news has been taken well by the fans.
On Welbeck, it seems the team has forgotten he exists but he will always be fondly remembered to two iconic moments in his fledgling Arsenal career;
- The match winning goal in the 2014/15 FA Cup quarterfinal against Manchester United at Old Trafford and
- That late late header against Leicester City last season in February.
He suffered a knee injury in April and missed Euro 2016, and it must have been hard for the lad seeing his teammate strut their stuff on the pitch, while he spends countless hours with the physios working his way up the fitness chain. Hearing that Welbeck is in training again makes me happy, because he’s a player with very good potential and I’m confident he can actualize it at the Emirates.
A full Stoke preview comes up tomorrow.
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