Arsenal to drop Ramsey after Spurs shocker?

Without naming the names of any of his Arsenal players in particular, Arsene Wenger made it clear in his post match interview that he felt that many of them had not played at their normal level. His interview reported by Sky Sports shows that the Frenchman was not happy with the defending but he seemed more concerned that our midfield and attack did not do enough to alleviate the pressure and give Tottenham players problems at the other end.

Wenger said, “The only regret I can have today is that we gave two cheap goals away, but Tottenham deserved to win this game.

“I’m disappointed with our offensive performance today because we didn’t produce enough and I think technically we were short in many aspects of our game.

“I feel we gave away balls in some areas that despite the pressing we should not lose, and some players were well below par today on that front.”

For me the worst offender was Aaron Ramsey and I was very surprised that the Welshman was not replaced when Tomas Rosicky came on. Maybe Wenger thought we needed Ramsey´s defensive capabilities but in our next game against Leicester City you would expect Arsenal to have a lot more of the ball and to be much more attacking.

So is it time for Wenger to drop the struggling central midfielder and play the excellent Rosicky there instead?

Arsenal fringe players Sparkle and suggest good times ahead

It might be a bit harsh to call Mesut Ozil, Tomas Rosicky and Theo Walcott fringe players for Arsenal, because a lot of fans will count those three as some of the very best and most talented Gunners that Arsene Wenger has available.

The fact is though, that for various reasons they have not been a big part of the season so far for Arsenal. Well they certainly put down a marker today and gave the manager the sort of headache that football pundits always say is the sort of problem that you want. All three scored, all three played well, so they will want to know the reason if they are dropped for the games coming up.

Walcott admitted in his post match interview that he was still a little short of match fitness but he was brilliant before being replaced, taking his goal with coolness and class. Ozil was better in possession and off the ball as well as creating things and scoring his own goal with style.

And Rosicky was deservedly named Man of the Match and surely deserves a lot more time on the pitch to prove that he is not too old to utilise his technical ability and experience. Enjoy your headache Arsene!

Arsenal Finally Have Ozil Back – But Should He Start Against Stoke?

Finally, Arsenal’s record signing Mesut Ozil is back in contention for a start after recovering from a knee injury he suffered just prior to the last international break. But while the German international was on the sidelines, Santi Cazorla has undoubtedly fluorished in the Number 10 role and has shown the form that made him such a sensation during his first season in English football.

With Danny Welbeck out injured and Lukas Podolski having left for Inter Milan, it is extremely likely that Arsene Wenger will be tempted to bring his coveted playmaker straight into the starting eleven and push Santi out wide to the left flank. But quite honestly, Santi is minimally effective playing there and the same can be said about Ozil playing in that position. Keeping that in mind, I would opt to leave the Spaniard in the central role and play Tomas Rosicky on the left flank.

The veteran midfielder has notched up a couple of very good performances since coming back into the first-team picture and I feel that he deserves to keep his place in the starting eleven as a result. Moreover, I would like to see Ozil fight for his place in the side as he was pretty lacklustre prior to his injury. I am one of those who believe that the former Real Madrid man’s price tag has a lot to do with the amount of game-time he gets and I believe that Mesut will perform his best without a guaranteed spot in the side.

With that being said, I would like to see the returning Mesut Ozil to start from the bench against Stoke and both Santi Cazorla and Tomas Rosicky should keep their places in the starting eleven.

Is Rosicky set to be Arsenal’s secret weapon today?

The Czech midfielder Thomas Rosicky has only recently started playing for the Arsenal first team this season, but he has already shown his quality with some top performances and an important goal against QPR. Thomas may be 34 years old but Mikel Arteta believes that he is extremely under-rated and has been ever since Mikel first joined the club three and a half seasons ago.

“Within a week of joining Arsenal, watching Tomas train and having him play alongside me, I knew he was one of the most underrated players,” Arteta said in the official website. “It’s hard to find players like Tomas who can be that clever and do things so simply and lively on the pitch.

“I think everybody likes to play next to Tommy and I’m very happy for him because he was given the chance and again he hit the spot.

“He can carry the ball and he’s got that 10-yard spurt where he can change direction, his vision and his final ball.

“Something people sometimes don’t think about with Tomas is that he works really hard. He’s always very alert with very high concentration levels during the game and that’s why he’s so good.”

Today is obviously about rotating the players that have been seriously overworked for the last few weeks. If Rosicky plays his normal brilliant game against Hull we can be assured of a good showing against Hull.

Why Arsenal should `gamble` on Coquelin again

The decision to start the young French midfielder Francis Coquelin for Arsenal in the tough away game against West Ham on Sunday was pretty much forced upon Arsene Wenger. With Mikel Arteta, Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere out of the running with their various injury problems and the aging Tomas Rosicky needing a rest after playing just two days previously, Arsenal were left with few options.

Wenger could have gone with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, but the boss clearly wanted to be more solid in the centre and to give the Gunners more protection to the back four and the decision to play Coquelin next to Flamini really paid off. But Wenger admits that the move was a gamble, as an Arsenal.com report has revealed.

The manager said, “He played very well, especially in the first half. He was very influential and then in the second half he fatigued a bit in the last 20 minutes, but he had a very good performance not only defensively but he also passed quickly, sharply and through the lines. Overall he had a convincing performance.

“It was a gamble but I felt that we needed to protect with two players in front of the defence with Carroll on the long balls – we needed a bit of protection. I feel that he was the right choice.”

Now Wenger needs to decide whether to go with Coquelin again and with Rosicky having had a week to rest and recover, that decision is even harder. But I think we should stick with the young Frenchman; not because he is better than Rosicky, who put in a sterling effort against QPR, but because we need keep the game compact away to the Saints, at least to begin with.

And Coquelin’s confidence will never have been higher, so now is the perfect time to give him another chance to shine.

Arsenal handed TRIPLE injury boost for Liverpool clash

Arsenal have had an unbelievable bad run of injury problems this season and even now that they are supposedly on the wane, there is still a whole starting XI of first team Gunners out of action. The Arsenal.com website has 10 players on their list but Abou Diaby is not one of them and we have to assume that the French midfielder is not yet fit to play.

With the likes of Ramsey, Wilshere and Arteta not available, Arsene Wenger would surely have put Diaby on the bench if he could. But the manager has been handed a big boost on the injury front ahead of our trip to Anfield to face Liverpool and I am not referring to the absence of Glen Johnson and possibly Balotelli from Brendan Rodgers’ squad.

Three Arsenal players are set to overcome their knocks and give Wenger more options for Sunday, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain expected to come through a late fitness test, while Nacho Monreal and Tomas Rosicky are said to be fine to play, according to physioroom.com.

The fact that these returning players play in Arsenal’s most stretched positions of central midfield and defence is perhaps a sign that our bad luck is coming to an end. A win at Anfield on Sunday will confirm it.

Arsenal have 3 hours to seal Reus transfer! Come on Wenger!!

With Arsenal having apparently tried and failed to seal a stunning deadline day for Radamel Falcao, only to be beaten by the panic stricken Man United, Arsene Wenger and his backroom staff are under the cosh to bring some players in before the transfer window closes tonight.

But if one of those targets is Marco Reus from Borussia Dortmund, as a report by Metro claims, then the Frenchman has even less time, because the transfer window for the German Bundesliga closes in about three hours from now, at 5 p.m. British time.

Reus has already admitted to turning down a move to Old Trafford this summer, but that does not mean he would do the same with Arsenal. In fact, the German is said to be an admirer of the Gunners and Wenger. He has said nice things about the club in the past, Tomas Rosicky was his football hero growing up and he would have a few fellow countrymen to help him settle.

Also, it has become more likely that Dortmund will sell after re-signing Shinji Kagawa from United. They know that he could leave for just £20 million next summer when his release clause hits that amount, so a decent bid from Arsenal now might just do the trick. So come on Arsenal, give us something to cheer about today.

Does Rosicky still have a place in the Arsenal team?

The loyalty of Tomas Rosicky has never been a question. Signed from Dortmund in the summer of 2006, Rosicky has been one of Arsenal’s most shrewd signing of all time. Rosicky’s style of play is what represent’s Arsenal in a nutshell. Fearless, unselfish, quick, the little Mozart has given Arsenal many goals to remember. His goals against Sunderland, Hamburg and the brace against Liverpool is just Tomas Rosicky at his best. When everybody left, he stayed with the club. He was finally rewarded last season with the FA cup triumph.

Arsenal have unlimited options in midfield. Ozil, Ramsey, Santi, Wilshere and Arteta are amongst the best of what we have at the moment. Not to mention that Arsenal are also currently in the market for another defensive midfielder. Rosicky’s place and involvement in team could be very limited from now.

Nevertheless, I still believe that Tomas Rosicky has what it takes to compete for spots in the team. His footballing brain, selflessness and quick burst of pace may just be what we need off the bench if we are chasing a game. Despite the many injuries, Arsene has decided to keep faith in Rosicky. Thus, I believe he must have something that we do not know about. He could be a very vital piece to us considering that we are looking to launch a serious assault on the premier league, but I fear he will only get a game when our usual injury list gets out of hand.

Is Rosicky’s presence still vital in the team?

Rosicky fully focused and feels Arsenal can finish top!!

After scoring what was an absolute stunner from the edge of the area against Tottenham Hotspur, 72 seconds into the North London derby, Tomas Rosicky was able to silence the fans at White Hart Lane and show just what Arsenal are capable of this season. It may not have been a massive win but it was one that was very important. A class defensive display and passion for a derby day win showed just how determined we are to recover our Premier League title challenge.

Rosicky managed to secure all three points for the Gunners with victory at White Hart Lane for the first time since 2007. It was also our third fixture against them this season, and we have managed to win all three, demonstrating exactly which team rules in north London, if there was ever any doubt. The win means that we were brought onto level points with second place Liverpool, only being behind them on goal difference. With the latter stages of the season drawing in, Arsenal’s chances admittedly look slim with City, Chelsea and Liverpool all striding far, however it isn’t impossible and goal scorer Tomas Rosicky believes the title challenge is still very much alive for Arsenal!

He told Sky Sports after the game, “I think it’s a great race for the fans as well as the players. I think it will be until the last game of the season. This is a very tough league, every game is very important and there are plenty of games still to go. It (the goal) is one of the best, against Tottenham as well. I’m delighted by a goal like that and most importantly we won the game. It’s a great result for us. These derby games are always very tough. It means a lot for us, obviously for our fans as well. We are delighted.”

Rosicky is right in saying it’s one of the most challenging leagues in the game and this season has once again proven how close things are. A slip up from the leading team can change so much in a matter of weeks. Chelsea have experienced it this week, although they remain on top of the table, whilst of course we too have already drastically experienced it this season, having led the league for the large majority of this year’s competition.

With hope that Arsenal can exploit another team’s failings whilst of course pushing with belief ourselves, we can get there, and if not then an FA Cup win and a top four finish is surely nothing too much to moan about.

Arsenal may be without Ozil for whole season!!

In Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Bayern Munich in the second leg of the last 16 Champions League competition, Mesut Ozil was ‘forced’ to come off at half time with a suspected tight hamstring. I put the word forced in inverted commas because at the time I didn’t believe the news. I felt that Wenger wanted to make the move for tactical reasons rather than an injury concern however Arsene Wenger later told Sky Germany in his post-match press conference:

“Ozil’s injury is quite bad. Ozil has a hamstring that looks quite serious. I don’t know how long. For sure he will miss Tottenham. He’s out. We have to make a scan to see how bad it is but he’s out for a few weeks. We hope it’s not so bad.”

It was suspected to be one that would rule him out for a week and a half at most, however since then we have had to learn that the damage to his hamstring is a lot worse than originally feared, with the result coming back as a number of six weeks at the very latest. The way things have been going, that could end up being longer and there are only two months until the end of the season and the FA cup final. It’s a major blow to the Gunners no matter his level of performance at the moment because despite the majority claiming that he is on a bad run of form (something that cannot really be denied); he still holds that special element about him which means he can perform a moment of magic in an instant.

I previously stated that with Wilshere also being ruled out for a matter of weeks, that it was not as bad as initially thought. His injury will allow players with a desire to impress, play out of their skin to show the manager exactly why they should continue to play after Wilshere returns and I think it will be the same with Ozil. Gnabry will certainly now get his chance on the wing, with Cazorla surely being moved into the CAM role, whilst Rosicky is sure to feature more. It also opens up more opportunities for Oxlade Chamberlain and Podolski, so we will have no need to worry about replacing a player who was on a mediocre run of form.

However what is a little bit worrying is a growing injury list at a very important part of the season. Ozil, Wilshere and Walcott are all ruled out with long injuries, whilst Ramsey’s return date is still unknown. With major games coming up we are really going to miss these players if the rest don’t manage to step up, however with some faith and desire, they should be at least be able to recuperate some of the form demonstrated by those that are lying on the injury table.