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My Arsenal Blog

Arsenal need a long-term replacement for Nacho Monreal 0

Posted on February 27, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Arsenal defender Nacho Monreal recently turned 31 this month and is fighting for his place in the side after being dropped in the Premier League for Kieran Gibbs in recent weeks. The Spanish left-back has made 23 appearances this season but hasn’t been at his best in 2017 which will be a worry given the Gunners don’t have a better alternative in his stead.

The lack of game time for Gibbs has affected form as his re-introduction to the Arsenal first-team has seen him looking considerably short of quality and sharpness. The English international was tipped to eventually replace Monreal, but he will be 30 by the time the Spaniard’s contract is up at Arsenal (2019), and his performances are likely to see him on the periphery.

Could Ox, Welbeck or Perez replace Iwobi for Liverpool clash? 0

Posted on February 27, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Arsenal winger Alex Iwobi has enjoyed a breakthrough season, leapfrogging the likes of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott in the pecking order, but his recent form has wavered which could see him making way ahead of Saturday’s trip to face Liverpool. The 20-year-old greatly underperformed against Sutton United in last Monday’s FA Cup clash, and finds his place at risk due to a lack of output in 2017 – ten games, one goal and two assists.

Is more summer investment needed in central midfield? 0

Posted on February 26, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

With Santi Cazorla having underlying problems with an ankle injury, Aaron Ramsey suffering from muscle problems limiting his game time, Mohamed Elneny falling down the pecking order and Francis Coquelin enduring a dramatic dip in form, do Arsenal need to invest in central midfield for next season?

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain could be a feature in a central role for the rest of the campaign given his industry and creativity, which raises questions on why so many other options have failed to convince given Arsenal’s depth in the position. Jack Wilshere would have been a like-for-like replacement for Cazorla but he’s been on loan at Bournemouth.

Arsenal standing firm over contract demands from Ozil and Sanchez 0

Posted on February 26, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Arsenal chairman Sir Chips Keswick has suggested the club won’t budge on their stance with Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez with the two players having stalled on signing new deals to alleged disagreements over personal terms despite the finances being greater than ever – Arsenal boasting £100M in cash reserves.

Ozil, who is on £140K-a-week, is said to be looking for £250K-a-week in order to sign a new deal with the Gunners. Alexis Sanchez is also reportedly standing firm on a quarter of a million pounds per week. However, Keswick suggested the club won’t bow to demands if they deem them too lucrative, saying Arsenal will be “rational” in regard to how much they offer their top players to stay at the Emirates.

Will Arsenal scout Liverpool against Leicester City ahead of next Saturday’s Premier League meeting? 0

Posted on February 25, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Premier League defending champions Leicester City host Liverpool at the King Power Stadium on Monday night, five days before Arsenal travel to Anfield to face Liverpool. With no competitive game until March 4, it would be a good opportunity for the Gunners to scout their next opponents given they have a full week of training to prepare for the fixture.

Arsenal have won just one of their last six head-to-heads with Liverpool in the Premier League, losing two and drawing three, while keeping just one clean sheet. The Gunners have conceded 15 goals in the six meetings, and haven’t beaten the Reds since 2015. As a result, it would perhaps be worth their time to scout Liverpool for their weaknesses to make sure they don’t fall short again.

Arsenal fall 13 points adrift of Premier League leaders Chelsea 0

Posted on February 25, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

If Arsenal were still being considered as challengers in the Premier League title race this season, Chelsea’s 3-1 win against Swansea City on Saturday may well have ended the debate. The Blues extended their lead over the chasing pack to 13 points with 12 games remaining and the title looks to be returning to Stamford Bridge for the second time in three seasons.

Arsenal have a game in hand on Chelsea, but given they can only narrow the deficit to 10 points with 36 available, it’s hard to see the Gunners catching their rivals. A perfect finish in the Premier League from Arsene Wenger’s side would see them finish on 89 points, a tally Chelsea would surpass with nine more wins.

Could Per Mertesacker come in for the injured Laurent Koscielny? 0

Posted on February 24, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Laurent Koscielny could be out of action for Arsenal’s next game against Liverpool as he continues to battles with hamstring injury, but could it be Per Mertesacker who replaces him? Gabriel Paulista is expected to partner Shkodran Mustafi at the back if Koscielny isn’t back in time, but Mertesacker has been training for some time and could be an option.

Gabriel’s athleticism is his greatest strength and may be key to keeping tabs on an energetic Liverpool frontline. But Mertesacker is a measured player who doesn’t give away fouls, nor does he dive in and compromise his position on the pitch. Gabriel has the pace to chase players bearing towards goal, but he’s also suspect due to his rashness in the tackle.

Aaron Ramsey could be back for Arsenal’s next Premier League game 0

Posted on February 24, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey is nearing recovery from a calf strain suffered at the end of last month. Manager Arsene Wenger said it would be three weeks until the Welsh international returned from the knock, and Ramsey should have enough time before Arsenal’s next game to make his return.

The Gunners face Liverpool in the Premier League on Saturday, March 4, and Arsenal are 11/4 to win against the Merseysiders. Ramsey is unlikely to start given his lack of match fitness and the stiff competition in the midfield, but having him as another creative and industrious option in the side gives Arsenal another dimension if things aren’t working on the pitch.

Arsenal could find themselves out of the Premier League top-four on Monday 1

Posted on February 23, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Arsenal are currently fourth in the Premier League with 50 points from 25 games, one point clear of fifth-placed Liverpool ahead of the next round of matches this weekend. However, with the Gunners’ next league outing not until March, while Liverpool play this coming Monday, Arsenal could find themselves outside of the Champions League spots at the start of next week.

Arsene Wenger’s men are outsiders to stay in the European places this season, with the bookmakers preferring Chelsea, Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool to occupy the coveted spots. Arsenal are predicted to come fifth and Manchester United sixth. They haven’t fallen outside of the top-four of the Premier League since September, and won’t be pleased that Liverpool are their next opponents in March.

Could Szczesny be on his way to Dortmund in the summer? 0

Posted on February 23, 2017 by Crippy Cooke

Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny is reportedly the subject of interest from a number of European sides, but Borussia Dortmund are said to be leading the chase for his signature. The Polish international has been on loan with AS Roma for two seasons, but the Serie A giants may not be able to match his agreed fee of £13M to make the deal permanent.

With Petr Cech and David Ospina as first and second choice at Arsenal, Szczesny has stiff competitions for a starting place if he returns to his parent club, and the 26-year-old may well be open to a move away from the Emirates Stadium at the end of the season as a result. Juventus and Napoli are two sides keen on the goalkeeper, but perhaps not to be an immediate regular.

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