Thursday 2 April 2009

Less exciting than watching Joe Cole dribble

Unfortunately I was subjected to enduring a rather workmanlike England performance against the Ukraine yesterday, fortunately ITV decided to make it a bit more entertaining by including Joe Cole on their pundit panel, I have to say it was the first time Teddy Sheringham has ever appeared intelligent, it's a bit like watching a race between a tortoise and a traffic cone if you know what I mean. On several occasions the rather vacuous Cole tried to express himself but completely the wrong words came out to make yet another incomprehensible sentence, it really gave me an insight into the kind of intellect that makes up the England squad and also what kind of banter echoes around the Chelsea dressing room, I wonder Ashley Cole feels at home there. I bet you a copy of the Sun is a week's reading and the drinks machine has more neural connections than the average English Chelsea player.

Anyway International football is just plain rubbish, as Arseblogger says, it really is a bit of a sick cousin these days. The twitching headless chicken Aaron Lennon has somehow managed to win the PFA player of the month award, a very strange choice given the man has the footballing brain of a rotting zombie, I also found all the nominations rather strange, RVP was nominated after a rather average month. Yet again we've picked up some more annoying injuries, RVP, Diaby and Eduardo are all out, thanks a lot international football. The good news is that Walcott, Cesc and Adebayor are back. Meanwhile Silvestre has been speaking of the team's improvement in recent months, obviously we've missed his pace and thrust at the heart of our defense so terribly. Man City look to be missing Bellamy who has been in fine goalscoring form since his move north. The team may be looking like this (post scriptum I am assuming that Nasri will remain out due to a virus):

Sagna Gallas Toure Clichy
Walcott Song Cesc Arshavin
Bendtner Adebayor

I'd prefer to see Djourou in there, however I suspect this will not be the case. Song has been solid of late and I feel that the Denilson-Cesc combo is not a particularly symbiotic one. Hopefully the injuries to Diaby, RVP and Eduardo are not serious and they will all be in contention for the biggy against Villareal. Three points are much needed against City, it would be nice to see a bit of daylight between us and Villa, and City's away record is very poor indeed, they will certainly not be full of confidence. I hope we come out with guns blazing, bag an early goal and knock the Mancs out for the count early on. Come on you Gunners.


Rhinogooner said...

Nice write up 1979. You beat me to the list of unavailable players and returning players. I agree with your proposed line up.

Walcott is certainly a welcome return. But I must express my chagrin at Eduardo picking up a groin injury again while playing for Croatia. He was kept on for 80 minutes! What is the reasoning for this? He's just come back from a long term injury and has been plagued by niggly injuries since. Hence the reason Mr. Wenger hasn't risked him for more than 60 minutes per game.

I get the feeling that national team coaches really are not bothered about overly fatiguing players or returning them crocked. So long as they get their use out of them, any injuries or need for rest is a problem for the clubs.

You can understand why managers like Ferguson convince players that they have slight knocks before international breaks that they miraculously recover from as soon as it's over...

tsog83 said...
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tsog83 said...
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tsog83 said...

Is it just me, or have you and Rhino forgotten that we still have the excellent, and un-injured talent that is Nasri. IMO he is a starter before Song, before Arshavin and before Walcott. His poise, and excellent ball control are integral to Arsenal's style.
Too often is Nasri overlooked, but I am pleased not so by Arsene. He is going to start. Either at the Expense of Walcott or Arshavin, or by using 5 in the middle, with Bendtner on the bench.

Let's do it! 3-0 in the first half!

1979gooner said...


I had assumed he was down with a virus that has put him out of action for France.

K man said...

tsog83, I agree that Nasri should start but it sounds like he has the flu hence 1979's omission.

Can't believe we've picked up soooo many injuries - we were all getting excited about Wenger having loads of options but now this. Really pissed off about Eduardo and RvP.

Definitely agree that we need to keep up the pressure on Villa. Will try and support Man Poo this weekend but it will be tough.

Obsinho said...

I rate Nasri really highly - to my mind he is the most effective carrier of the ball at feet we have in midfield (not including the Russian Messiah, who I have not really seen enough of) and he is a real battler as his spats with Gallas have shown.

Onto someone I don't rate - Aaron lennon. I am not saying that Theo is hundreds times better, and neither of them would know what a good final ball would look like if it kicked them in the gonads, but Lennon is a one trick pony - dip left shoulder, go on outside, hit cross early. Every bloody time.

At least Theo has learned that raw pace is useless if you use it all the time - he now holds the ball sometimes, passes short etc. putting the defender at doubt and making his positioning harder.

And frankly, if England didn't have Rooney we would be absolutely abysmal. Truly truly awful in fact.

Rhinogooner said...

I rate Nasri highly but the report I read at the time of writing my comment said he was down with flu. Hence my ommission.

1979gooner said...

I am psychic!

or just a lucky fool!