Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Djourou and Wilshere talk up their chances as Arsenal ban vuvuzelas

Evening all. Well there has been quite a bit going on today so I though I would round up the news tonight rather than tomorrow as there is a game on and I'll want to preview that as well as cover the normal business in the paper round in the morning.

We'll start with a man who has a major opportunity this season to make his mark in the first team.

That's if he can stay free from injury.

Johan Djourou has what can only been a stuttering Arsenal career. In the team then out as soon as he's put a run of a few games together.

When he has played he always looks very promising. It's just a shame he's got some of the Robin Van Persie's about him.  Him and Robin must be good friends, the amount of time they spend in the treatment room together.

With William Gallas and Mikael Silvestre leaving, Djourou has a huge opportunity to stake his claim for a first team spot.

He spoke to the official site after the game with Barnet at the weekend.

"The knee is good. This time last year it was different because I was feeling my knee. But this season is a new start for me. 

"I had a hard season last time and now I feel good, I feel fresh so I am ready to go. I need a few more games but I feel good.

"We have many games to go [before the start of the season]. There are two matches in Austria so I want to get those under my belt as I haven't played that much. For me pre-season is very important."

I just hope he can spend the season injury free because if he does I think he could turn into a top class defender. He's got all the necessary attributes. Height, pace and a good footballing brain.

Jack Wilshere has been talking to the official site about the coming season and in particular the Emirates Cup which takes place in the last weekend of July.

I went the first season it was held with my family, when the tickets were reasonably priced.

Now, they are still good value for money, but not the same as they were.

I digress.

I can't wait to see Jack Wilshere this season and I think he'll stay with the group for the whole campaign.

He's not first choice by any means, but he will be integrated into the first team and offered an opportunity as a substitute in the same way Aaron Ramsey was last season before his horror injury.

Wilshere told Arsenal.com:

"It can help set the tone for your season. A good performance at the Emirates Cup can help put you in the manager's mind. 

"It's a chance to show what you can do against some of the best clubs. It's good for the younger players too. They can make an impact in front of the manager.

"As a young player you always want to take your chance and the Emirates Cup is really good for that.

"It is a good tournament. It is good for families to come and watch some of the best teams and some of the best players and it always has a really good atmosphere."

A full list of those in Austria for Arsene Wenger's training camp has been posted on the official site.

They arrived on Monday and have been put through their paces today.

Those players not at the World cup and started pre-season training on July 6 were joined by those who were playing for countries who were knocked out of the tournament early.

Now the only two players on holiday are Robin Van Persie and Cesc Fabregas.

Those who didn't travel because of injured were: Denilson, Aaron Ramsey, and Nicklas Bendtner.

Of those who started against Barnet, three youngsters have been left behind. They are: Jay Simpson, Ignasi Miquel and Nacer Barazite.

Eduardo hasn't flown out either, as I said earlier today he was having a medical yesterday prior to his move to Shakhtar Donetsk.

Youngsters on the plane included: Conor Henderson, Emmanuel Frimpong, Jack Wilshere, Craig Eastmond, Henri Lansbury, Jay Emmanuel-Thomas and Havard Nordtveit.

There is a gallery of pictures on the official site.

A couple of the first team squad have decided to change their numbers, the club has announced

Robin Van Persie will move into the number 10 shirt, previously warn by his countryman Dennis Bergkamp after being on loan with William Gallas.

Carlos Vela has decided to take the number 11 shirt

In other news, William Gallas and Mikael Silvestre have had their profiles removed from the first team squad page on Arsenal.com

A bit of transfer speculation. Sport.co.uk link us very tenuously with a move for Japanese World Cup star Keisuke Honda.

And Kerrea Gilbert is on trial with Sheffield United.

And finally, the club has announced that vuvuzelas will not be allowed in the Grove. I didn't mind them in South Africa at the World Cup, but they have no place in England.

And the TV companies heat them, so that's the real reason they've been banned.

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