Morning all.

How can one not love an ex player when he comes out with something like this?

I have great affection for Arsenal and great memories from my time there, and beating Spurs, every time it was very special. These are memories I hold close to my heart and cherish.

That’s Alexis Sanchez, one of four players who’ve been at Arsenal but now play for Marseille.
Matteo Guendouzi, Sead Kolasinac and on loan Nuno Tavares. Marseille face Totts tonight knowing that a win will see them through to the next round of the Champions League, and with it, dump Totts out of the competition. Just a shame they’d drop into the Europa League.

Gabriel Jesus reminds me a bit of Alexis Sanchez, certainly in terms of work ethic. If Alexis was playing in this Arsenal team, at the age he was when he signed for us, I’m pretty sure he’d have been as happy as a pig in the soft stuff.

Chelsea and Man City have already won their groups so both managers have the luxury or resting as many of their players as they like tonight which bearing in mind we play Chelsea at midday on Sunday, isn’t ideal but it is what it is. Had the boot been on the other foot, I’m sure Mikel Arteta would do the same.

We’re already through to the knockout stage of the Europa League of course but only a win on Thursday, unless PSV lose in Norway, will see us avoid playing a knockout round play-off fixture which will take place on the 16th and 23rd of February. Secure top spot on Thursday and the Europa fixtures won’t come around until early in March.

Twelve days, four fixtures and then it’s the World Cup. When the domestic competition kicks off again, we’ll be just days away from the January transfer window. The rumours never really stop throughout the year but around this time of the year, they begin to increase. A bit like the Christmas adverts on television really, once Halloween and Bonfire Night have been and gone, mince pies and Prosecco are all over our screen.

One story doing the rounds relates to Facundo Torres. He’s just 22 years old and playing in the MLS for Orlando City. Prior to joining them back in January for under £10 million, he was in his home country Uruguay, playing for Penarol. His 13 goals and 10 assists in 40 appearances across all competitions for Orlando has allegedly, caught Arsenal’s eye. True or not I’ve no ideal but there’s a chance he’ll be playing at the World Cup with Uruguay so one to watch perhaps.

Austen Trusty is another to keep an eye on as if he plays for the USA, competition will be tougher than it is in the Championship, where he’s doing well. Birmingham manager, John Eustace has recently said:

He is going to be a top player, he is going to go back to Arsenal, whenever that is, at the end of the season and hopefully push for that first team spot there and I think he certainly deserves to be going to the World Cup. His performances for us having been exceptional and they are only going to get better and better.

Bodes well for Arsenal then and perhaps next season, he’ll be pushing Gabriel hard for the left side of central defence position.

Back in January, Arsenal tried to sign a striker, or at least that’s what was written in the back pages, this year, as the winter transfer window approaches, I’m sure we all hope the club are going to go for a midfielder after being unsuccessful in their pursuit of one late in the summer. But, that was when Mo Elneny had just been ruled out for a lengthy period through injury, now though he’s on the verge of returning. Personally, I don’t think it should make an ounce of difference because we’ll still be one injury in central midfield away from trouble. It’d be different if both players were younger, fitter and in Partey’s case, not injury prone but they’re not. There’s no guarantee Elneny won’t suffer a setback in his recovery either.

Douglas Luiz, Youri Tielemans, Danilo, Konrad Laimer and Manuel Locatelli have been linked to Arsenal at some stage but that means nothing really. We need someone though, someone who’ll come in and help push on a secure top four and who knows, a Europa League winners medal too.

See you in the comments.