According to Ray Parlour, the midfield of any football team is the most important area of the pitch:
When you look at teams like Barcelona, their midfield has always been the most important part of their game so hopefully Arsenal will be very similar.
Having a lethal goal scorer at the end of an attack is pretty darn important too. Also a top class goal-keeper with a strong four in front of him.
However, the midfield is the link between all things attack and all things in defence and if any side has the right balance right now, we have. Well, according to our old English workhorse:
It’s looking very strong, no matter who starts. There is so much depth in the midfield with Mikel Arteta, Mathieu Flamini – who has been a great signing – Ozil, Jack Wilshere, Oxlade-Chamberlain and Cazorla – so it’s a real headache for the manager.
When everybody is fit it will be interesting to see what sort of side the manager puts out.
Thankfully, that’s a job for Arsene Wenger and right now, he seems to be getting his selection spot-on.
He took a bit of criticism for the way we set up against West Brom but I honestly believe that the manager set us up not to lose. It’s quite possible that having seen a strong West Brom side blow Manchester United side away at Old Trafford, he was quite concerned that they would try, maybe even succeed in doing the same to us, especially as they were performing in front of their home fans.
Another thought for me was did the impending break play it’s part in his selection, after all, these breaks are bad enough, but going into one after a defeat makes them even worse and it feels like we have to wait forever for the domestic game to return.
It really is a horrid feeling for me and I doubt it’s any different for you all.
If ever there was a good international break, this one was just that for us. We had been playing well, we’re on an unbeaten run and players needed a break and that’s what many have been able to do. Just playing two games in thirteen days will have been a break, some of course like Wilshere, Mertesacker and Koscielny haven’t even played that.
Then of course there is the walking wounded who would have missed two more fixtures for us had this break not come along. Cazorla, Walcott, Sanogo and even Podolski are very very close to returning and I really wouldn’t be surprised to see Sagna back in the squad for the Norwich game.
In fact I think we’ll see a couple more return too, maybe only from the bench but a run out ready for the visit of Borussia Dortmund…
Last night gave us a bit of a fright when Mesut Ozil limed off down the tunnel having just scored on his 25th birthday but reports this morning suggest he’s just a bit bruised and should be fine for Saturday. Phew. Germany came out 5-3 winners and thankfully, Per Mertesacker was a spectator from the bench so he’s had a nice rest.
In other internationals, apparently Aaron Ramsey was the star of the show for Wales as he nabbed an equaliser for his side against Belgium. Thomas Vermaelen played the full 90 minutes.
Laurent Koscielny played 90 minutes for France in their 3-0 victory over Finland, Giroud also played for most of the game.
Carl Jenkinson played just 30 minutes for the England under 21′s and Jack Wilshere came on for the big boys towards the end of a game which saw Wojciech Szczesny beaten twice to ensure England earned a place at next years World Cup.
All I can say after that game is I hope Lewandowski plays as poorly for Dortmund against us as he did last night….
Great result for England though and I actually thought it was a good performance by Roy Hodgson’s men…..
Thank goodness that break is over, annoyingly though there is another very soon.
Right after the trip to Old Trafford on the 10th November….
That’s your lot for this Wednesday….