Well, I don’t have much to say about that! We got the point needed to qualify, we didn’t concede and we showed that we can play in the rain (Clutching at straws here!).
When the team was announced I was quite shocked. All the players that were being touted for a call up were being played. Diarra, Eduardo, Diaby, Walcott, Gilberto, Denilson, Bendtner and Song (I kid, I kid) were all in the starting 11. It was in effect, the Carling Cup team. Thats where the similarities ended! A dull bore draw was all that could be mustered on a damp evening in Prague.
I’m not going to go too deep into individual performances today. Bendtner and Eduardo were quiet all night, that may be down to the lack of service from midfield. Denilson was a peripheral figure, Gilberto plodded along and Walcott wasn’t at his best. I did think Diaby was good. He was up and down the wing all night and showed a lot of skill and pace. He does have a habbit of fading in and out of games though. I thought Diarra looked great again, his power and pace really shine through.
I’m not going to talk about Song too much. I don’t really rate him that highly. If I slate him, people will argue he helped keep a clean sheet, which is fair. I’m not going to bash him, I just can’t wait for our big Swiss centre back to return from Birmingham. Song gives me nightmares.
I thought Almunia showed great character last night. He dealt well with back passes in shocking conditions and he made a couple of great saves when called upon. Good man!
Arsene Wenger reckons he could use the same team against Seville in a couple of weeks.
“The young players could play in Seville. To finish first is important. You play a team that is second and the second game is at home, so it is a double advantage. I have not looked at the groups; it is a bit early to speculate who we might play.”
I suppose he has to trust the players he has, and I’m sure they are good enough to turn over Seville. I hope he doesn’t sacrifice top spot for a bit of rotation though? Mind you, it tends not to matter where you finish in your group. You can end up playing one of the big boys regardless.
Overall, we can’t argue with the result, it was fair and we’ve now done enough to qualify.
The Reading vs Arsenal game is set to be a family affair for Sonko. Apparently he holds the record for the most relatives playing professional football. Read here for snippets of Arsene’s 4-4-2 interview.
Its going to be a boring day on the newsfeeds, so here’s a suggestion.
Don’t go anywhere else and enjoy the blogging forum here at Le Grove!
See you there!