Morning all.

William Saliba has received four yellow cards so far this season so if he picks up another he’ll be banned for one game. The golden reset fixture is number 19 so with Arsenal having only played 15 fixtures so far, he’s got to try and play through four more matches without a picking up a booking. If he’s booked on Saturday, he’ll miss the Newcastle Utd fixture at The Emirates, if he’s booked in the Newcastle game, he’ll miss the trip to Tottenham and should he get booked in that one, he’ll miss the home fixture against Man Utd. Harry Kane is another player who is one booking away from a ban so unless he’s careful, he could miss the NLD.

What a start to 2023 we have though, three really tough fixtures but at least two of them are at home. There’s Brighton to contend with yet though, our final game of 2022. Takehiro Tomiyasu was back in training yesterday so that’s a boost for Mikel Arteta, especially as he can play in central defence as well as he plays left or right. Oleksandr Zinchenko was training too so the minutes against West Ham didn’t have a negative impact on his legs and ESR isn’t far off returning either. Exactly what we need going into the New Year.

If you’ve not already seen it, check out Flo Balogun’s 8th goal for Reims on YouTube. Hopefully he’ll be bring his goal scoring form back to Arsenal next season. Arsenal could do with him now really but he’s better off playing every week as he is in France, rather than sitting on the bench back in England.

Premier League top scorers 2022/23 – as of December 28th

  1. Erling Haaland – Man City – 20
  2. Harry Kane – Tottenham – 13
  3. Ivan Toney – Brentford – 11
  4. Aleksandar Mitrovic – Fulham – 10
  5. Rodrigo Moreno – Leeds – 9
  6. Miguel Almiron – Newcastle – 9
  7. Leandro Trossard – Brighton – 7
  8. Roberto Firmino – Liverpool – 7
  9. Phil Foden – Man City – 7
  10. James Maddison – Leicester – 7
  11. Mohamed Salah – Liverpool – 7

Not an Arsenal player to be seen on the above list but that’s because Mikel Arteta’s teams are sharing the goals around. Martin Odegaard and Gabriel Martinelli have scored 6 each, Gabriel Jesus and Bukayo Saka have scored 5 each and the rest of the 36, the second highest number of goals scored in the league by the way, have been scattered around the team. I still think this group of players have more goals in them, if they’d just put their boot through the ball a bit more often instead of looking for one more pass. But, that seems to be our playing style, that and snapping at the heels of the opposition when we’re out of possession. I don’t recall the last time an Arsenal team worked so hard on and off the ball.

Sleep tight Pele…

See you in the comments…