Friday, 23 November 2012

Wenger issues Walcott ultimatum -Transfer war chest boost? -Super Tom returns again!

Morning Gooners.

What a fantastic result for the team on Wednesday night. The momentum continues from the north London derby and the confidence is building within this team. Heading to Aston Villa tomorrow for the late kick off will leave us with another test about whether we can take our winning form with us on the road.

Villa may be third from bottom, but as we saw against QPR last month, these teams are fighting for their lives even at this early stage of the season. Having lost at Manchester City 5-0 and with a week to work with his team in training, I'm sure Paul Lambert will have his players fully prepared for the game.

It will be our third fixture in a week. And with tough tests to come away at Everton and at home to Swansea, I'm sure the manager will be looking at rotating the players in his squad. On Saturday that could mean that Thomas Vermaelen finds himself on the bench, with Kieran Gibbs restored to the starting line up.

The team news for the weekend is as expected. Theo Walcott remains out, Abou Diaby remains out (sigh) and Andre Santo is out as well. However Tomas Rosicky has returned to first team training.

The manager has renewed his call for Walcott to sign a new contract at the club. It's clear that the situation needs to be sorted by January one way or another. And even if Theo signs, I don't think we should let him leave in January unless we are able to (a) replace him with a player who isn't Champions League cup tied and (b) get serious money for him.

Wenger has also started an interesting discussion about when domestic leagues should be played. There are certainly big decisions to be made ahead of the World Cup in Qatar in 2022.

And watch out for a major announcement on our kit manufacturer from 2014. It's rumoured the deal could be worth more than £25m plus a season.

That's it for today. Back with more tomorrow.

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