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With real football returning this weekend, Arsene Wenger has big decision to make, particularly with respect to the goalkeeping situation. Although it would probably later today that Wenger sits through his customary pre-match press conference where he normally announces who’s in or who’s out for the next game, I’m assuming that Manuel Almunia has already recovered from his injury.
Comparing the Spaniard and Lukasz Fabianski, the former would be the safer option to take. While not spectacular, Almunia is probably at the very peak of his career that he can achieve. Looking at it from that angle, it is almost like taking the lesser of two evils. However we must not disregard the performance of Fabianski in the last 2 games that we’ve seen him in.
There were no mistakes and he looks very confident fielding crosses and freekicks. He was also spot-on with his positioning to stop shots, although we already knew that he is a good shot-stopper. Sticking with him for the weekend as well as the rest of the season (till he drops another clanger or gets injured) would give him a real shot of confidence.
It also goes to show that the boss appreciates the good work that he has put in and that Almunia can’t just get back into the side by virtue of being fit. If Wenger decides to drop him, I’m pretty sure the decision will hit Fabianski hard and we might as well just sell him then because the Pole is not known for having being able to take knock-downs. As David Seaman says, talent is one thing but the ability to show it is another.
It is rare but it does happen. Jack Wilshere can be wrong. Let it be known that West Brom did not sit deep and allowed us to take control of the game. Credit to Roberto Di Matteo that he brought his team to the Grove and fought fire with fire. They succeeded in their game plan while we did not. So, that probably means that not only do Arsenal need to know how to win against teams who parked their bus (United and Chelsea included in the list here) but also know how to do it against teams who are willing to showcase their attacking side as well.
Unlike Wenger who has to make hard decisions, unfortunately Cecs Fabregas do not have such luxury. Even if he wanted to leave the club, it was not his decision to make. Fairplay to him that he did not sulk and he was willing to accept Wenger’s choice. As a response, he demands that the team now shows him that he made the right choice. Fabregas was honest in admitting that the team lacked a certain winning quality.
It is not like he is sure to leave next season. If Arsenal do manage to win any trophy this season, it could very well be the catalyst to drive the club to more glory and ultimately remind Fabregas that his future lies at Arsenal Football Club. Everyone from the manager to the players to the fans, we all have to put in our shift and support to ensure that this happens.
I’m sure we’ll know more on the injury front tomorrow. Till then, have a nice day.