Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Theo's stepping up - Jack's surprising Wenger - Nasri's a winner

Morning Gooners.

Arsene Wenger and his squad travelled to the Ukraine yesterday and among the absentees were Cesc Fabregas, Andrey Arshavin, Alex Song, Denilson and Abou Diaby, as well as those out with long tern injuries.

The manager said that he wasn't going to risk Cesc, who he said wasn't pushing himself fully in case he injured himself more, so was leaving him in London as a precaution. Wenger said he would most likely play on Sunday in the league against Newcastle.

Arshavin (virus), Song (calf), Denilson (groin) and Diaby (ankle) will all be having treatment but there was no definitive answer as to when they would return.

So into the squad come Craig Eastmond, Jay Emmanuel Thomas and Henri Lansbury.

The manager spoke of another youngster he expect to see big progression from this season, Theo Walcott.

In a way it's hard calling Walcott a youngster having signed for the club in a big money move at 16. He's now 21 and really looking to make his mark this season after what was the debacle of not being selected for the World Cup squad.

The manager said of Theo
"He is fit, looking good and will start. He is very, very close to playing that striker role.
"First of all, he is a more natural striker as he likes to put the ball in the net himself.
"He can be a prolific goalscorer because once he is a yard in front of the defender there's very few who can catch him.
"The thing is with you in England, you are very impatient. Give two more years to Theo and imagine what he will be."
And had you asked where Theo might be in terms of his progress at the start of last season, I would suggest you would have said not as far along as he should have been.

But now, after his disappointment in the Summer, I feel he is coming on leaps and bounds. He is working hard in training and that is paying off on the pitch. You can see he really wants it and that's excellent to see.

As for whether he'll end up as a central striker, I personally can't see it with the formation we play. But certainly, he works well and fits into our current formation.

Another player the manager spoke glowingly about was Jack Wilshere.

The midfielder earlier this week signed a new contract and will slot in to midfield tonight. 

Wenger said in his press conference he was surprised with how quickly Wilshere had developed.

He said:
"I didn't expect that to happen so quickly. You have to be open-minded in our job and most of the time when it happens like that you are happy.
"When Fabregas is not there you have to share the passing. We have many creative players who can create good passes and that is what I count on. Wilshere is not scared to take the ball so he will have a part of it to do."
And I think we can all say how pleased we are with how well Jack has come on in these last four months. Since coming back from Bolton for pre-season training, he has shown the player he's going to be. And there is plenty more to come from him which is scary.

Some other bits and bobs around this morning.

Is Stan Kroenke about to buy Lady Nina's shares and take his stake above 29.99%? That's the thought of Matt Scott in The Guardian this morning.

It seems as though someone is in negotiations with the company who are selling Lady Nina's shares, according to the Guardian story. 

But after more than a year of them being on the market and the price having risen, I wonder if this "information" has been released to try and smoke someone else already with shares into trying to bid for them....

The Carling Cup date has been announced. We're set to play Wigan on Tuesday November 30 at 7.45pm at the Grove. It's not on TV, so best get yourself a ticket. No word on the website as to how much they'll cost.

And finally, congratulations go to Samir Nasri who was named PFA Fans' Player of the Month for October last night, beating the likes of Carlos Tevez and Rafael van der Vaart.

Now lets get him recognised by winning him the Player of the Month award on the official Premier League site. The voting panel is in the bottom right hand corner of the site.

Match preview later Gooners. Until then, enjoy your Wednesday.

Follow Ashburton Grove on Twitter, chatting Arsenal throughout the day. To receive the blog everyday you can subscribe via e-mail or take the RSS feed to your favourite reader.

No comments:

Post a Comment