I was about to say that this is going to be a Cesc-free zone but frankly that is a little impossible given the little news we have to play around with at the moment. Twitter has gone a little crazy, I mean frothing rocking your chair back and forth type crazy. People are losing their minds out there. I had to hide for cover and wait until it was safe to come out. Almost like a type of zombie apocalypse. Where normal Arsenal fans get turned when they come into contact with a tweet about Cesc Fabregas. Unfortunately RTs make it so much worse as it infects so many people in one fell swoop. I've attempted to change the topic but that does not work either. I think I have escaped due to a certain blood type that seems to be immune to it all. At least so far because I've read that zombiegas grows in strength when a blue shirt is seen on his body. Scary, very scary.
I wish I was this calm during the whole van Persie move to Manchester United, there was no blood type protection a few years back that's for sure. There are a couple reasons for that I reckon. Firstly van Persie left straight from Arsenal so it was very raw at the time. Cesc Fabregas forced his way out a few years ago now so that empty feeling has disappeared.
Another pretty big factor is that when Cesc left, he left with Nasri and our creative hub had been ripped out of the team. Today things are ever so different. Neither Aaron Ramsey or Mesut Özil are Cesc Fabregas, all three are very different players but the two Arsenal players have very good chemistry already and I am looking forward to them building on that. I was watching a highlights video created by somebody (Blimey, there are so many good ones out there) and it struck me how involved those two players were for most of our goals during the first half of the season.
Aaron Ramsey had a free summer to rest and develop and I do not see any reason why he cannot kick on once more. It might be asking a lot of him but I remember thinking that Thierry Henry couldn't keep developing at the rate he was and he just continued. Every new season you could just see a new layer on him, a layer that got more and more graceful and more confident. If Ramsey can replicate that for the next few years then we really will have something special.
As for Mesut, he doesn't have the same luxury as Aaron when it comes to resting this summer which is a shame in a way. He could have done with that for his second season preparation but it is what it is. I still think an Arsenal pre season under his belt will do him the world of good and if he can steer clear of injury then I see no reason why he cannot improve on his first season, a first season that had plenty of quality I may add.
These two players are the reason why I can deal with the Cesc saga and yes you can point to injuries but I do feel like that is really only being used because of the player in question. There was a point last season where we had many of our central midfielders injured long term at the same time but we've had that in many other positions during different seasons. It also does not hide the fact that central midfield is still ths strongest area of our squad. There was also a time when Gibbs and Monreal were out at the same time, do we go and buy Luke Shaw and Leighton Baines to cover that possibility? Should we then buy a couple more right backs incase it is their turn? Not only is this not going to work through out the squad due to squad size limitation but it makes no financial sense.
If the Cesc Fabregas story did not exist and he was wanted there then I'm pretty sure many Gooners would think I was nuts for wanting us to take a chunk out of our budget for Toni Kroos for rotation with our midfield when we had striking, right back, keeping and defensive midfield areas to address.
Look at me and my Cesc-free zone, pretty pathetic isn't it? It looks nothing like a Cesc-free zone and apologies for that. It was supposed to be more about the players we do have and I've veered off track, as I tend to do from time to time.
I did want to talk about Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Although he picked up an injury which will see him out of action for a few weeks, Roy Hodgson wants to keep Chambo in the squad and not replace him with one of his standby players who would be ready from the off. It's got to be incredibly frustrating for Alex to find his groove and then suffer a set back, battle his way back and bang, it happens again. It's been that way since his excellent pre season and start to the campaign only to get crocked in the first game of the season against Villa.
I thought he was very exciting before his injury the other night. He showed another glimpse into his future as a player. Very involved, very direct and extremely dangerous. He's another that could have benefited from a football free summer, especially after his injuries last season. I think he's good enough to force his way into the Arsenal starting 11 once he develops his game and adds consistency.
We know that Arsène likes one creative player on one flank with a wide striker on the other, the good thing about Ox is that he is seen as a creative player, the kind who will come inside and add the extra body, use the ball and make tackles when needed but the obvious advantage is that he has the pace and trickery of a wide forward. I'm a massive fan and hope he can fulfil his massive potential.
I missed the Germany match tonight but judging by reports Lukas Podolski was in the mood tonight and impressed from the left with a hat-trick of assists and a goal. In all the talk of building our squad and the new season I must admit I have totally forgotten about Lukas. I'm glad he seems to be staying put, I wonder if he will find himself a little lower down the pecking order. I hope so, it would mean we've added to our attack and that can only be a good thing.
Right time for a coffee and a snooze. Have a good night and try not to get infected, there is no way back if you do.