No action for Arsenal this weekend as our North London rival are involve in the FA Cup semifinal against a cash-strapped Portsmouth side who are struggling to even register the necessary 17 players on the team sheet. In a way that gives us more time to recover players with niggling injuries like Alex Song. We missed his presence at Nou Camp and his return to the side will be a big boost to our chances of winning at White Hart Lane.
Meanwhile, Nicklas Bendtner, who is in a rich vein of goalscoring form for Arsenal has finally got some recognition from Arsenal fans after being voted Player of The Month of March. I think that it is widely acknowledged that he is no Drogba or Rooney or even Van Persie but has shown his potential and is by far not a finish article yet.
The Danish coaching staff would probably be delighted with the amount of game time and goals that Bendtner has gotten since his return from a groin injury. The momentum growing, going into the World Cup would serve Denmark well.
He has scored 8 goals and 3 or 4 assists in the last 10 games for Arsenal. He’s a bit like Alan Smith in the way that he plays. Which is something that is very distinctively different from the other strikers that Arsenal possess. Him being on the field means that there is a target man up front who can lead the line as well as holding of the ball to bring others into play.
The only gripe I have with him is the fact that he drifts out wide too often. Sometimes we even find him collecting the ball in the midfield area. When he does that, then there is no Arsenal player more advance than him and it would only slow down any momentum going forward. A player of his size and stature should really stick to being in the centre and right up in the face of those opposition central defenders.
His propensity to win headers is also another plus point for the 22-year-old. However, we do not see the impact of that yet. This is mainly due to the 2 wide players (normally Arshavin or Nasri and sometimes Fabregas) are not close enough to him to anticipate the knock-downs. Take a look back at some of the games and see how many times Bendtner won headers from long balls or goal-kicks only to find the ball trickling harmlessly to the opposition players. I’m sure Theo Walcott would relish pouncing on those knock-downs and drive towards goal.
There’s the El Classico tonight that looks to be a cracker of a game. I don’t normally talk about games not involving Arsenal but this is one of those fixtures to look forward to in every season of European league football. Both sides are in great form going into the game. Barca, of course have just beaten us to advance to the semifinal of the Champions League and Real Madrid has a very good record at home. Billed as the Messi v Ronaldo match, the destiny of the La Liga title may well rest on the game tonight.
Since there is no Arsenal game, I would suggest you watch that tonight instead of the boring Villa v Chelsea semifinal.