Gooooood morning, Goonerdom.
Somethings can slightly pique my nerves. Ever so slightly. One of those things are the things said by Wenger about ‘not replacing Ljungberg’. *gulp*…bit of a worry, chaps? The opinion on this site is that wingers are needed, and then some, so Wenger saying this could mean two things – One: it’s a smokescreen to stop the media from linking Arsenal to all wingers in sundry, lowering the price before the ‘surprise, surprise’ sneaky-move by Arsene for exactly that; or Two: he kind-of means it. ‘Maybe there’s no other Ljungberg’, or some such-like thing. Or perhaps he’s happy with what he’s got. This will be the third season with such a contentment, and the vultures will really be circling if he’s going to settle for no replacements. We wait in hope. “But it is too early to say…”, says Wenger – little tease, isn’t he?
The other mini-controversy that’s come about was the naming of William Gallas as captain for the match yesterday, and Wenger’s pondering the longevity of such an installment. It was an interesting choice, but seeing as Gilberto captained with distinction for the majority of last season, Wenger will find it hard (as will all of us) to ignore this experience. He’s captain of Brazil, for crying out loud.
Before too many slag Gallas off too much (and by no means am I a huge fan of his, but still), bare in mind that Gallas had a method to his madness in those outbursts last season. I’m particularly remembering the mention of abandoning Arsenal’s zonal marking system for a man-to-man. If anyone knows what he’s talking about there, it’s William. Kolo Toure should be captain before Gallas ever gets it, and Gilberto is still the resounding first-preference for me, but Gallas stepping in as captain for the odd match might just see some kind of ‘difference’ to the defence. Cynically, we’ve seen a huge difference to our defence, in that since William got transfered here, we’ve been leaking goals all in sundry (yes, that’s right, after Senderos got dropped with World Cup injury). I still think Arsene will give the armband to Gilberto.
Alex Hleb talks about his need to ‘be more selfish’ in this article, and most would nod appreciatively. Not much more needs to be said about that; it’s good to see Hleb is aware of his faults as a player, and is trying, at least, to improve on them. I’m still of the belief we’ll be seeing a better Hleb this season. Whether that just means more assists, or a handful of goals, either or would be fine.
And then of course, there’s little Jose Antonio Reyes. Something must have irked him in London that he so desperately wants to get out, even as far as Lyon. Real pity, in a way, if you think of his late-03/04, early-04/05 form, which was quite incredible.
We’ll all go cry for Argentina, now.