Written by Mean Lean on Saturday, 20 October 2012 11:52
Today is Arsenal day and that feels great. It is ridiculous to have had so many stop start international breaks already to this early season. It is not over yet though, no siree. We have another round of friendlies next month in the middle of the season. It is like Arsenal arranging friendly matches in the middle of a difficult schedule. But hey, money talks doesn't it?
But that isn't our immediate concern as we face the Canaries at Carrow road this afternoon. There is something about this Norwich fixture that makes me think of sunshine and happy times. When I think of the likes of Stoke, Birmingham and co I think of gloom and rugby.
Our record has been pretty positive against Norwich in recent history although I do remember Norwich spanking us 4-2 in the sunshine at Highbury back in the nineties.
Last season we beat Norr-witch (as Arsene would say) away thanks to a Theo Walcott assist and I forget the rest for us. A Per Mertesacker error gifted Norwich a consolation goal but it wasn't enough for them.
The home game late in the season was crazy, a match filled with undisciplined defending. The final score ended 3-3 with the visitors having enough chances to have won the game. It could have been a result that could have allowed Tottenham the chance to finish 3rd but they blew their chance as usual.
Today is a different game, much has changed between the two sides. Norwich are under different management while we have built a new attack. So last season's results are insignificant.
We have some injuries that we have to deal with. Andre Santos will start his first Premier League game of the season at left back as Kieran Gibbs is still nursing his injury which he picked up at West Ham. Theo Walcott's impact with the San Marino bus has put him out of action for another week at least according to Arsene. Koscielny has a back issue so he is left out of the squad and there are rumours that Francis Coquelin could be out of the squad with injury also.
Even with those injuries and also players not quite ready to return to the starting line up, we still have quality to come in such is the depth of our squad at present.
Oliver Giroud is currently going through a mini scoring run after goals against Coventry, West Ham and Spain so you would imagine that he will be feeling pretty good right now, he should lead the line and I guess Arsene has to decide who plays on the right. Gervinho is the obvious choice, considering his goals this season but if Arsene wants to reinforce his midfield then he may go for someone like Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, although given his England exploits you have to think that is quite unlikely.
Mean Lean's Predicted Line up:
Much of today's focus will undoubtedly be about Jack Wilshere who will be taking his place amongst the substitutes but I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't feature in the game at all. Had the likes of Rosicky, Diaby and perhaps Coquelin been fit then it would be likely that Jack wouldn't be in the squad so soon.
That being said, it would be lovely if he was to get a nice 5 minutes at the end depending on the score. That would take some of the pressure off his next match.
Lets hope the boys can get straight into where they left off at West Ham.
Speaking of Jack Wilshere, @RoxyArms, the man that brought you 'Sign da ting' has come up with another song for us Gooners. This time he brings us 'Jack's Back' along with three Mini Lean's on the backing.
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