Friday, 17 May 2013

Wenger's plan for Arteta's absence -Rooney discussed at Arsenal scouting meeting

Morning Gooners.

It amazes me how quickly a season goes by... Where does nine months disappear to? This one has been especially enjoyable for me as I've been able to attend more away games and got my first taste of Arsenal in European action away from north London when I along with 3,600 other Gooners watch the impossible nearly happen at the Allianz Arena.

Of course along with all the good times, there have been the several downs. Going  to Stamford Bridge and watch us put in such a meek performance was disappointing. Then there was the draw at Southampton, which was a game we should have easily won.

I won't be in Newcastle for the final game but plan on being at my favourite Arsenal pub to celebrate St Totteringham's Day.

It seems the team news ahead of the weekend is as expected. The only player in doubt is Mikel Arteta with a calf strain  The Arsenal vice-captain has played in 33 league games for us this season, scoring six goals. He's clearly been an integral part of this side but we have learnt to win without him in the side, something which happened just once last season - our final game at West Brom.

Arsene Wenger does have options. Jack Wilshere must be a prime candidate for a recall. And if that were to happen I'd imagine that Aaron Ramsey would drop back into the deeper role and for Jack to take his place.

Wenger said:

"Mikel is an important player. In one game you can always compensate. It's more of a problem when a guy like that misses 10 games. 
"[For] one game, we will find the resources to do without him if we have to. I'm convinced we can because he was out for a while during the season and I played all sorts of combinations. 
"Arteta was out and we played Ramsey and Wilshere. A few times I played Coquelin, Diaby so we had a few combinations that could work."

We don't have the option of Diaby. Coquelin hasn't played since making a one minute cameo against West Brom last month. So the only viable option is Jack, who hasn't been at his best since returning from injury still is an outstanding talent.

The manager has sought to clarify his own position at the club. Writing in his blog for French Eurosport he said:
"The rumours about my future? I answered this question several times by saying that I have always respected my contract and I will continue to do so."
And finally, the Daily Mail report that Arsene Wenger, his coaching staff and scouts have discussed a move for Wayne Rooney. It's clear we're going to be going after some quality players this summer. I'm not sure that he'll be one of them, despite the manager's admiration of him.

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




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