Arsenal v Everton or Here We Go Again!
It seems the rite of summer for most Arsenal fans recently is lamenting the lack of momvement in the transfer window and wondering way glaring issues aren’t properly addressed. Well, arm-chair prognostication is still going to go on regardless but this Saturday, Arsene’s army gets rolled out again to end the 4 year silverware drought the team has experienced.
The nemisis of the day? None other than Everton. Annually they are cited as one of the two or three teams that could supplant the Gunners from their perch in the top 4 and every year they wind up 5th or 6th. The story is exactly the same this year.
Everton are an image of consistency amongst of a sea of change. Continually lacking the funds to make wholesale changes that could change the club’s fortunes, the team does well because it is coached well. David Moyes, is a gaffer to be respected for what he achieves with his team. Last year that consistency paid off with a trip to the FA Cup final losaing to Chelsea.
Moyes has put his boys through the paces and it looks like he will roll with a 4-5-1 formation. While he tested other, this one seemed to offer the squad the best chance for success.
Goodison park should be a rocking place and they will be firmly behind their boys as a fully fit squad get ready to square up against our boys. News out of the Emirates isn’t all great as the injry list is already growing – Rosicky, Nasri, Walcott, Fabianski, Djourou are all expected to be out of the lineup. The only good news is that recent transfer Thomas Vermaelen is fit and should feature in the back 4.
The new formation gets rolled out against Everton as Wenger shifts to a 4-3-3 to support the attacking options he has. I expect the front four to be Arshavin, Van Persie and Bendtner. The midfield anchored by captain Cesc Fabregas and supported by Song and Diaby. The back four Sagna, Gallas, Vermaelen and Clichy. Almunia features in goal. On paper the squad doesn’t look bad but, Song and Diaby are still growing and their ability to hold the midfield and allow Fabregas to support the attack is still in question. Each has considerable talent but the fruits of it have yet to be fully recognized.
The attack is solid and features good support coming off the bench, Eduardo, Vela, Ramsey, adnd future star Wilshere. The midfield will still likely benefit from a more experienced holding midfielder and the back four has to be considered tighter with a fit Vermaelen. Though were the squad to add Hangeland at some point, the Gunners would have to be considered for a serious challenge on some silverware.
Overall, this a game that the away squad have to put an emphatic mark on. A resounding win with a ton of possession will likely go along way to making people believe we are on the right track. A draw or loss and the pitch forks are likely to be out and the prognasticators that predict a Man City usurption will grow more vocal.
The first month is beset with minefields both from a domestic front and in our bid for European glory. Any misstep this early in the season and the effect could be huge. We go against a strong Everton side, followed by Celtic in UCL, Portsmouth and Celtic again, then Man U and we kick September off again heady challengers, Man City. Realistically, a squad with our talent should figure for at least 2 wins, 1 draw and 1 loss domestically, and a draw and win in the UCL. Anything less than that and this could be a long season.
Well, here it is lads, we’re off an running!