It is a slow news day today, not a lot jumping out in front of me and yelling 'WRITE ABOUT ME!!' especially with the caps lock on. Soccer picks its moments for news and today simply isn't that day. I actually have yet another urge to write about the future and changing the colour from that mobile advert but two things are stopping me. One, it gets some supporters backs up and in my fragile tired state today, I wouldn't want to go around doing that. But secondly, I have done it all too many times in the past, so I shall wait a little longer before I unleash that on you.
Although speaking of the future, a certain Serge Gnabry is making a name for himself. The youngster who combines Ivory Coast power and German technique has managed to bag himself a similar train ticket to the one that Jack Wilshere had owned. A 16 year old youth player that had been impressing so much that he was promoted to the reserves. Jack Wilshere had proved that he was a cut above the older reserve players and eventually made his way into the Arsenal first team squad after a loan to Bolton and an impressive pre season at Arsenal.
Gooners who have managed to watch him have been waxing lyrical about him so I decided to dig a little deeper and get some information on the kid. Gnabry was involved in athletics in his younger years and had to make the decision between football and athletics, luckily he chose footy. He says that he is super quick and is up for a race and then fight with Theo Walcott at some point. Ok, perhaps not the fighting part but that was something that happened at my school. One kid asked my mate if he wanted a race and then a fight and he agreed. It was surreal, watching them sprinting in the playground, catch their breath and then switch into full fighting mode for no reason. Kids eh?
Anyway, getting back on the subject of Gnabry, he also fancies himself as a sharp shooter.
“I have a good shot, I practice my shooting a lot and if the shot is on because of the opening and the ‘keeper is positioned in a way where there is a chance, I am not afraid to shoot. I like to go for it if the chance is there, and thankfully, I have had some success,”
We have to remember that he is only a 16 year old kid and there is absolutely no point or no good in over hyping a player still in the middle of his development but basically is faster than Walcott, shoots better than van Persie and is stronger than Yaya Toure and stuff.
Gnabry played for the reserves last night and according to reports was the best player on the pitch, a pitch that included several first team players. I haven't had the chance to feast my eyes on this hulking, technical beast of an attacking midfielder apart from a few YouTube compilations, as reserve games are no longer shown live *Grrr* I used to watch all the games when they were on Arsenal TV. Do you remember that? Blinking eck, get a TV channel already.
You see how I did that. I started the article by saying that I wouldn't talk about the future and look where we are? You cannot defeat the subconscious you know.
Anyway, the charismatic Andre Santos got 60 minutes under his belt and it will be interesting to see what Arsene does at left back. Kieran Gibbs has done well in recent weeks and has stayed fit which is a huge bonus but with the experienced Santos back and looking rather trim I must say, will Arsene take the risk and play the senior player against Everton? It is interesting (or not) that he played 60 minutes and not the full 90. Saving some petrol in the tank? or caution as it is his first game back? Perhaps a bit of both.
Ju Park scores when he wants.. in the reserves. It was a nice goal apparently and adds to his other reserve strikes this season. Has there been a slight adjustment with the squad players and the reserves? I've banged on about this before so no need to open up that particular can of worms but I like it. Get them fit, get them sharp and give them confidence.
With the return of Santos and hopefully Diaby for the Everton game with are (Wilshere apart) back to full strength.. in March. How is that even possible? When was the last time at this stage of the season that our bill of health was almost as clean as Fernando Torres' goalscoring chart? It is remarkable and it is no coincidence that with our returning players our form has shot through the roof. I maintain the stance that we have one of the best first teams in the league when healthy. Who knows what a sprinkling of Podolski mixed in with a touch of Wilshere could provide. Shhhh, no future talk today.
I am a little worried about the Everton game at Goodison I must say, I am fighting with negative waves in my head but there is plenty of time before the game to deal with that. I am intrigued to see how we and Everton approach the game though. Newcastle tried pressing us from the front and stopping our build up play from the back. Everton have caused us a few problems by stopping that in the past but against Newcastle Szczesny simply lofted the ball onto the head of Sagna high up the pitch and he flicked on to Walcott. We pretty much pulled Newcastle's pants down in public and they found it difficult to live with that. Seeing as Arsene doesn't adjust his tactics I wonder how that came about. *ahem* I will be checking out our next game to see if we repeat that.
Lastly Tomas Rosicky turned down some mega cash from Russia and China to stay at the Arsenal. I think Tomas and his wife should have dinner at the van Persie's and have a chat about life and stuff. Not that they need convincing but why not make sure I say.
Finally if you didn't catch the new weekly column by James 'Raul' Stokes called Who needs Batman? We've got Robin! then do so initt?!