Friday, 21 September 2012

Unrealistic expectations will hamper Wilshere's return -Podolski's permanent mark -Wenger's positive vibes

Morning Gooners.

Finally there appears to be some positive news on the Jack Wilshere injury front with the midfielder returning to full training yesterday. It's great to see his happy little face back on the training pitch after being out for so long. And now the next phase of his recovery can begin.

How long before we see him in first team action is anyone's guess. From now on the club will take it day by day to ensure there are no set backs in his recovery. No risks should be taken. He's been out for 14 months and  no one wants  to see him back in the London Colney medical centre any time soon.

The manager realises he needs to be cautious with Jack. His confidence has taken a battering with all the false dawns he's already had, but yesterday was the first time he'd taken part in full training with the first team in his comeback from injury so certainly a forward step.

What should we expect from Jack this season? Very little in my opinion. I think we should write this season off as one where he'll go back to learning the ropes again. I see no point in pinning any hopes to him playing 30 games for the remainder of the campaign. That would be an unrealistic expectation on a 20-year-old who's not played any football in more than a year.

I'd like to see him slowly brought back into the team, starting with minutes here and there and then gradually build that game time up. The other big issue Jack faces is the competition for places in the team is fierce at the moment. He'll have to do a lot to prove to Arsene Wenger he's ready to start games.

Normally when a player resumes training with the first team they are virtually ready to play competitively again. I don't see the manager handing Jack that chance for sometime. I think we all can't wait to see Jack back in an Arsenal shirt, but thankfully at the moment there is no need to rush him back into the team. The midfield trio of Arteta, Diaby and Cazorla are doing just fine and if we need to switch one of them out Ramsey and Coquelin are chomping at the bit to play.

Arsene Wenger said:

"We are so pleased that Jack is back in full training. It’s been 14 months and that’s a long time for someone at his age. It’s an eternity, but it’s great news. 
"We have to give him a few training sessions to see how he copes and responds to it. That’s the delicate, sensitive stage - to choose when to bring him in and out. We’ll have to handle that day-by-day. 
"We also have Emmanuel Frimpong who has returned to full training this week, which is great news as well. Emmanuel has also been out a long time, but is progressing well."

Moving forward to this weekend's game and the manager has  spoken about us being in the right frame of mind for our clash at Eastland's following our encouraging start to the season.

He said:
"We know it’s a big test. We go there in a very good, positive mind. We have a good opportunity to show how good we are and how strong we are. So let’s take it." 
As I said yesterday, we'll learn more about how far this team can go from our next three league games. I'm really excited about Sunday's game. I think we can go to Manchester and get a result. We've got to hope that we'll be in a more positive frame of mind than our opposition considering the manner of our victory over Montpellier and the last minute defeat to Real Madrid Mancini's men suffered.

We know we can play better than we did in the second half of our game in France but I think we're really starting to gel as a team. The left hand axis of Gibbs, Podolski and Cazorla is looking good and on the right I've been very impressed with the development Carl Jenkinson has made.

How we'll set up against the champions is another debate. Last Saturday's fluid formation with Gervinho playing more centrally certainly seemed to work well. But the manager also likes the physical prowess of Olivier Giroud. It's a selection headache for the manager, but it's fantastic that he's got so many options.

Lukas Podolski has spoken of getting an Arsenal tattoo. He already has one for his former club Cologne, so was asked on Tuesday night whether he would consider getting an Arsenal one.

He said:

"Cologne meant so much to me because I was there for a long time.  
"Arsenal is a big club and maybe we can do a tattoo.  
"I like this club. There may be a tattoo on my left arm in a few years!"

He's only been at the club for five games and is already being asked about having a permanent tattoo done. We can see that he's enjoying life in north London and on the pitch at the Grove but asking him about getting an Arsenal tattoo is very premature in my opinion.

The manager will host his press conference later and we'll get the latest team news. The most interesting part of that update will be whether Wojciech Szczesny will be fit enough for this weekend's game.

That's your lot for today. Back with more tomorrow.

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