Arsene Wenger has spoken of his confidence in and excitement about his current Arsenal side at a press conference ahead of the club’s Emirates Cup opener against French side Paris Saint-Germain. Wenger spoke in length about the club’s prospects for next season and had some very positive things to say:
“I must say the desire for success, the hunger for success, the togetherness I’ve seen during pre-season has been greater than ever. I’m very excited for the new season because what I feel and saw during the camp for pre-season made me impatient to start. I’m personally very optimistic because of what I’ve seen inside my squad.”
I certainly agree with Wenger that there is much to be excited about but I will feel a lot more optimistic if/when he signs a replacement for Ljungberg. One of the suggestions I mentioned in yesterday’s post has signed for Manchester City for next to nothing but the other option remains open. Will Wenger bring him in though?
Injuries and the Paris Saint-Germain game
Some other, less than positive news is that three of Arsenal’s likely starters; Emmanuel Adebayor, Tomas Rosicky and Theo Walcott have picked up minor injuries and will miss the Emirates Cup. However, Wenger has indicated that the injuries are not serious and the players in question will be available for the start of next season.
“We worked very hard in Austria and there was such heat that we have lost Emmanuel Adebayor, Tomas Rosicky and Theo Walcott for the tournament. The good news is that it is a question of days not weeks. They will be OK for Ajax and everybody will be ready for the start of the season.”
When it’s all said and done I’m not too impressed with this situation. The Arsenal squad is paper thin at this point in time, especially in the wide positions, and it worries me to see two of the players who were injured for long periods of last season – Rosicky and Walcott – struggling again. After last season’s injury debacle the warning bells are ringing loud and clear in my ears.
Regardless, I’m looking forward to seeing how Arsenal perform against Paris Saint-Germain on Saturday. Given the current injuries and the fact that it is still pre-season, the starting line-up is likely to be quite experimental. Personally, I’m hoping that Wenger puts out as strong a team as possible and I’ve popped in a picture on the right on how I think it should look under the current circumstances (injuries/Gilberto Silva on holidays etc). Personally I don’t care which goalkeeper starts and I’ve put in Lukasz Fabianski for the simple reason that I haven’t seen him play much yet.
What do you think?
Just before I go I’d like to wish a Happy Birthday to Gunnerblog, which turns three today. Anyone whose seen it will know it’s a top quality Arsenal blog and I wish GilbertoSilver all the best for the future. Cheers!
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