Happy anniversary Mr Wenger | Tantalising contract negotiations | Midfield car crash unfolding

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Too early for Jaeger?

Too early for Jaeger?

Hull City are next up, but firstly, we must congratulate Arsene Wenger on his 20th Arsenal anniversary. I don’t want to labour on it for too long, but it’s quite an achievement. He’s seen off many great names, Owen Coyle, Jose Mourinho twice as well as Sir Alex Ferguson.

You can’t argue with that longevity. When he started I was 12 experimenting with hair gel and copper dial up internet porn. Remember that? Spending many hours working out how to clear those history folders… then finding the old mans computer stash. Bad times. I digress.

Well, you could poke holes in the last decade, you could say that his longevity has owed a lot to indebtedness of an owner who loves the consistency of top four. The stale collapse of his tenure isn’t a sight to behold, I’m not clapping him teary eyed wondering how time passed so quickly, I’m bored, wishing away his final season.

It’s a shame that as a fan, I can’t be excited about his AFC birthday, because for me, he’s outstayed his welcome.

But look, we’re stuck with him this season. We just have to hope he pulls a rabbit out the hat again this year… and by that, I mean keep us kicking hard to stay in the top four.

Interestingly, Diego Simeone has taken a two year reduction in his Atletico Madrid contract. He’s signed a reduction. Yeah, I know, weird… even weirder it made me twitch like that 12 year old boy 20 years ago firing up his Intel Pentium 1 desktop when the parents left to go to Tesco.

So Diego’s deal expires at the end of next season. Why would you do such a thing? Madness. A tantalising one. If the club are serious about competing next year, and Wenger does finally decide to do one, you’d think it a pretty crazy notion we wouldn’t consider the Argentine, the best coach not in the Premier League. It’d also be crazy not to consider Allegri and Tuchel. Even Lucian Favre who was a bit unfairly fired from Gladbach.

Anyway, the stars are aligning…

Back onto the Hull game… Wenger has pushed us into CRYING OUT FOR GIROUD. He’s given us Alexis Sanchez up top, which hasn’t really panned out. He’s given us Perez who is very new, very green and likely has a future out wide. Now we’re all praying Giroud lands a start, because at least he’s an outlet.

It’ll be interesting to see what Wenger does tomorrow. Will he stick with Coq and Santi? Likely, when people kick out at his decisions that fail to deliver the goods, it’s customary for him to dig his heels in, in an attempt to make us see the light. He’s also come out with a new idea to quell us thinking his current favoured CM pairing not weird and stupid… and that’s the notion that Xhaka is actually a ball playing DM.

‘I personally prefer him as a box-to-box player, because he has the engine, he has the power, he has the long pass, he likes to come deep and distribute the game’

I am all for experimentation, I really am. But we have an actual issue with Coquelin not being very smart tactically / rubbish on the ball. Which was solved by Xhaka. Now Wenger is pushing the solution further up the pitch, in direct competition with Aaron Ramsey, who now is what? A really good sub? Same happened with Jack. He wanted to play in the deeplying playmaker, a position he was owning for England, but Wenger insisted he was a 10, then shunted him out on loan?

Sell someone if your midfield is so fucking confused.

Jeez, I guess I’m just looking at the decisions Wenger has made with his squad this year… and, well, I don’t know… I’m baffled. Santi taking a starring role when his legs have gone? Coquelin usurping two better centre midfielders? Joel Campbell and Jack Wilshere sent out on loan? Gnabry sold £4.3m? Very strange decisions.

But hey, Wenger is a strange manager.

So, let’s see what happens against Hull. We need to start racking up the points because City are on a lovely run with a manager who sees the game through the lens of the future. It’s always risky to put so much promise on a team and its early form, but this is Pep, not, errr… Claudio Ranieri?

Anyway, see you tomorrow. x

729 Responses to “Happy anniversary Mr Wenger | Tantalising contract negotiations | Midfield car crash unfolding”

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  1. Rambo Ramsey

    Pedro, actually I think Wenger IS pushing for Xhaka to replace Coquelin. His words in the presser today fall in line with this cause Coquelin is actually playing B2B right now.

    Perhaps the partnership Wenger has in mind is Xhaka-Santi, with Cazorla continuing with the deeplying mid role that he’s playing so far this season.

  2. gggg

    This latest nonsense about Xhaka is just further proof, if any were needed, he has gone off the deep end. SIgn an actual quality player who can fix some of the problems with your moribund team and then leave him on the bench for…Coquelin? looooooooooooool.

    Looking forward to another game of Oxlade Chamberpot on the wing with Alexis up front who AW will keep playing there til hell freezes over because he has to prove he wasn’t talking absolute shite when he claimed Sanchez would be as good up top as Suarez. Jesus wept.

  3. Ashley

    If we are serious about going for simeone or Tuchel , then what’s all the Eddie Howe linkage all about ?? Don’t dare us to dream pedro ,and then watch as our dreams are laughed at when Howe signs a nine year deal with us …

  4. Dissenter

    Guardian: “Arsène Wenger urges patience with £30m midfielder Granit Xhaka”

    The fans have faith in Xhaka
    It’s the manager who won’t give him games that’d run out of time. How is Xhaka going to get up to speed if he’s not paying?

  5. WengerEagle

    Just breaking Wenger’s tenure down into trophies, it doesn’t make for outstanding reading at all.

    3 league titles, 6 F.A Cups.

    7 of those 9 major trophies were achieved in the first 8 seasons of his 20 year tenure including all 3 of the league triumphs.

    He’s never won the Champions League, has only made the Final once (2006) and the Semi-Finals twice. (2006, 2009)

    There’s been a clear deterioration in success over the last decade, funny how 1-2 poor seasons quickly bleed into over half a decade of stagnation. We’re literally the only upper echelon club in Europe that have willingly stood by a manager that has failed to compete on a domestic or European front for years and years, look at Manchester United as a case in point.

    They are so desperate to return to their past glories that they’ve hired a manager in Mourinho that as a character and a man is really beneath a club of their stature and history as evidenced by their decision in 2013 to pass over him when he was practically begging for the gig for none other than ‘Moysie’.

    At Real Madrid ONE year of failure is a sackable offence, at Chelsea/Barcelona/Bayern Munich/Juventus it’s not much better.

    Even a club as patient and stable as Manchester United will not tolerate more than 2 botched seasons from a manager with a reputation as esteemed in the game as Louis Van Gaal.

    No other big club welcomes mediocrity quite like we do.

  6. Joe

    Is longevity really something.to be applaueded when he should have been fired 8 years ago at least. Probably a decade.

    He would have been if it was any other team

    It’s not like he has a fergie legacy who was a winner until the bitter end.

  7. Paulinho

    It’s what I was saying a few days ago. Xhaka won’t be a success if he just spends every match plodding along distributing from deep. He needs to add that other dimension – notably runs in behind from time to time – that made Petit dynamic. I do have grave doubt about his ability to do this though. I think he stays deep because he lacks the acceleration/mobility to play further up.

    Wenger only seems to realise what he’s actually bought once he buys them. Although even then with Sanchez, two years later he still cannot accept the fact he’s not a centre forward or more worryingly, doesn’t know why he can’t play there.

    All falls in line with his increasing incompetence as the years go on.

  8. BacaryisGod

    It seems highly unlikely Diego Simeone is headed our way. I would put it more at 20-1 so don’t waste your money. All the talk is that he wants to go to a big Italian club, maybe revitalize one of the Milans or even replace Allegri.

    His contract ends at the end of next season, not this season and it’s very unlikely Arsene or any new manager will sign a one year deal.

    Ain’t going to happen people!

  9. STV

    Hi WE my list was based on European history and pedigree along with Domestic success.

    If its based on post 2000 then Man Utd should be ahead of Ajax, Liverpool and arguably Milan.

    Bayern vs Barca is tough one but I think Bayern has slughtly more domestic and European success.Plus Barcas records especially in Europe wasn’t spectacular untill 2005.

    I wasn’t ranking teams nor talking financial in to account.

    It’s just my personal take anyway but not without doing little research.

  10. STV


    For about half a century, Ajax was regarded as one of the best clubs in Europe. Had more domestic and we European success than United. Contributed several players considered among the greatest.

    They declined as a club but Ajax as a team had a great history and success. Considering, their decline together with United revival from 1990s and their extraordinary success since, one could easly place United above them. I get that.

  11. Sam

    We are stronger than last season n it’ll start tomorrow
    Our new signings are good including Robbie Holding
    I back Chuba Apkom to step in n make an impact if Lucas still wobbling

    Come on you Arsenal

  12. Sam

    Chelsea n Man city honeymoon will be over soon n we’ll catch Man yoo tomorrow if they fail to win

    Game of 3 points n only 1point draw table can change quickly

  13. Joe

    Stronger than last year?

    We already 2 points down from what we got from Leicester last season

    2 points less already than what we achieved vs Liverpool last season

    We squeaked by soton

    And watford

    Where exactly are we better than last seaon

  14. STV

    Current best teams in Europe

    2.Real Madrid
    3.Bayern Munich
    4. Juventus
    6. Man City
    7..Paris SG
    8. Borussia Dortmund

  15. Joe


    Because Sam is an idiot.

    He think the season starts tomorrow and forget about the first 4 matches

    Yet he won’t answer me what will happen if we finish 5 points back (which we won’t) , will
    He consider us champions? Since the first 4 matches don’t count

    Foking spud

  16. Frost


    Current best teams in Europe”

    Should be…

    2.Real Madrid
    3.Bayern Munich
    4. Juventus
    5. Man City
    6. Atletico
    7.. Borussisea
    9. PSG

    Was probably tempted to put Dortmund & Chelsea over Atletico tbh. Who have struggled abit this season bar their last league game. But i think they’ve turned a corner. No way they should be above City tho.

  17. Frost

    Liverpool really would’ve been a force this season if klopp had addressed their defensive issues in the summer. You can’t go anyway with a weak defence tbh. Love love their attacking pay tho. Such fluidity in the front line when they in the mood.

  18. Sam

    Why would I answer to idiots who don’t know the league has 38 games
    a club can recover from bad start then go on to fight for the title
    5 points is only equivalent to one defeat and a draw

  19. Troy McClure

    Not playing Xhaka and / or Eleneny vs PSG was weird. PSG has some serious athletes in the midfield, Matuidi and Keychowiak. I love Santi but he can’t do 2 intense matches in a week. Coquelin runs around but leaves everything wide open behind him, and is a red card waiting to happen. Wenger got this matchup all wrong. Xhaka’s situation is like buying a sports car, but when you get an opportunity to drive at a big race track, taking your 5 year old 100k mile Hyundai.

  20. Joe

    38 games?

    Thought the league starts tomorrow. Meaning there are only 34 games in a season

    Foking idiot

    Wenger couldn’t keep the lead at the top of the table in Jan/feb how many times but somehow he is going to make up 5 points from sept Over pep and Jose


  21. Dissenter

    Any list of the “Current best teams in Europe” that has Arsenal included is laughable.
    What in the world are you people smoking? Gazidis fart?

  22. Jeff

    Wenger destroyed his legacy and the great invincible team that David Dein helped him to put together. The second half of his tenure saw DD’s departure leaving Wenger to oversee the gradual seepage of inferiority and mediocrity into the team. As the last of that solid defensive vanguard disappeared so did the greats of our midfield like Vieira and the legends of our strike force also sought the exit.

    What transpired then was blamed on the stadium, lack of funds and silent Stan. The universe sought to show us that those excuses were just that – excuses when finally last season the big boys withdrew from the fight leaving a one-horse race with us well on top at Christmas. What did we do? We fell over and limped over the line 10 points behind Leicester.

    Now, a lot of people will say that Wenger did very well over the 20 years but history won’t because she’s fussy about actual glory rather than “nearly”, “almost” and “not quite”. If you think Wenger is a brilliant manager, it is only for nostalgic, sentimental and other woolly reasons you would think such a thing, nothing else.

  23. Sam

    ok now time spoon-feed the idiots

    Rob Holding n Mustafi making sure we can survive even if we lose Koscielny
    Xhaka n Elneny replaced Flamini n Arteta

    we only have problem in attack coz I am still not sure about Lucas
    Hopefully he’ll pick up

  24. Frost

    Speaking of attacking play. Really hoping perez gets up to speed & quick. We all shouting for Giroud after that shit show in Paris, myself included, but i think we all know we not going anyway this season with him leading the line.

    Sanchez, Ozil & Iwobi have to be behind tho. Iwobi probably should be playing the sub-role Rashford & iheanacho(what a talent these two are btw) are playing for their clubs, but considering we have no better options he has to be a starter. & ffs start Xhaka!

  25. Majestic gooner

    Xhaka in the process of being wengerised, he will soon be a shell of a player he is now. If he thought he needed a box to box midfielder why didn’t he just buy a box to box midfielder,? why buy someone and try to change him? The mad scientist is turning the club to one big laboratory.

  26. Sam

    Right now I am seeking employment incl senior position or mgmt

    i sack all the negative cunts
    you show them light all they see is a foking dark tunnel

  27. STV

    We have a good chance for beating hull. But Wenger needs to get rid of Coquelin. He’s a liability slowing our tempo and making mistakes in the midfield. Not a first team material.

  28. Frost


    Any list of the “Current best teams in Europe” that has Arsenal included is laughable.”

    LOL I’m pretty sure it’s called being biased dissenter.

  29. Al

    This notion that Santi’s legs have gone is absolute nonsense and needs to stop.

    He is still as fit as most our players and is always the one driving near the end of the games.

    The fact is of course he is going to look a bit slow or physically weak when he is asked to be the last man defending because Coquelin has left him exposed……..he is not a defensive or powerhouse midfielder that’s why.

    It’s all about balance

    You need to always compliment him with a powerful defensive minded midfielder while you let him do his magic

  30. Ze Kaka

    Current best teams in Europe”Should be… 1.Barcelona
    2.Real Madrid
    3.Bayern Munich
    4. Juventus
    5. Atletico
    6.Man City
    7. Chelsea
    8. Arsenal
    9. PSG
    10. Borussia

  31. Dissenter


    Any list of the “Current best teams in Europe” that has Arsenal included is laughable.”

    LOL I’m pretty sure it’s called being biased dissenter.”

    Being biased is saying that Arsenal will always be my team even if it were behind Charlton Athletic in league one.
    It’s fantasy to place Arsenal in the top 10 when we havent won a a league title in 12 years nor qualified for the quarter finals of the CL in 6 seasons.

  32. Jeff

    And you show the plebs reality and they dance like fairies with amnesia pretending we’re going to win the league for no reason other than blind hope and the ground hog hasn’t quite shown up yet. But when we hit February and it is obvious to all that we won’t be winning anything again, what happens to them? They sink back into the mire along with all their premature stains of hope.

  33. STV

    Xhaka might have gathered Wenger’s intention of turning him in to b2b midfield via press as he has spoken to him just “3 or 4 times” since his arrival lol..

  34. Pierre

    Sam, Don’t know why you Bother trying to get a decent conversation out of Joe….. Don’t waste your time . Anyone who can’t celebrate Arsenal winning a trophy or a match is not worth the effort….I commend you for trying though .

  35. STV

    Jeff well said. Fools paradise you can say.

    Would be interesting to see if those cunts will show up in here in March having faced with reality.

  36. Joe

    I didn’t realise that Wengers trophy record in first five years at Arsenal was
    96/97: 0
    97/98: 2
    98/99: 0
    99/00: 0
    00/01: 0

    So how many good years were there

    And we all know how 2004-2015/2016 has gone

    So out of 20 years he’s had, what , 3 good years??

    98, 01 and invincibles.

    And the 06 CL run

  37. Frank Mc

    Joe, why are you so fucking aggressive all the time?

    You clog the comments up with your Wenger out vitriol. You label people “AKB’s” if they disagree with your narrative which is embarrassing imo….

    The majority on here want him gone, but realise that calling him a cunt every 15 seconds changes fuck all…..

    And we’ve got a lovely stadium, never forget that!


  38. Joe


    But he is a cunt.

    And idiots like sam who think the season starts tomorrow and Pierre who has never made one relavnat post do
    My head in and deserve to be treated as they are

  39. Joe

    Lovely stadium??

    Rather be at highbury still. What good has that stadium brought us? Other than 10 years of wenger at 8m plus a season

    Highbury all fucking day

  40. Joe

    And frank.

    What has the convo been about today.when did I call wenger a cunt until you brought it up?

    What? Did you not like the facts he’s had 3 good seasons out of 20?

    Did that hurt you?

  41. Frank Mc

    You’ll end up making yourself ill, I think he’s done as a top tier manager (has been for 10yrs+) and I want him gone, but a cunt no, maureenhoe has unified all those belts!

  42. Joe

    The moAners like Pierre Dale and frank and ruining this Blog

    Spend more time bitching about posters than posting anything relevant.

    Let’s bury our heads in the sand and sing one Arsene wenger. Noting we can do about it anyway is there??

  43. Joe

    wenger is just as an arrogant cunt as Jose. Don’t let your Arsenal bias cloud your judgement. If wenger was Chelsea or spud manager and had the same behaviour he does with us you’d think he was a cunt roo

  44. Joe


    Haha. Right?

    It would be us singing ” Arsene wenger we want you to stay”

    On the other hand , he wouldn’t have lasted more than a season at those Clint

  45. The Iceman


    As if you’ve ever been to either stadium you plastic fucktard.

    Do us all a favour. Pipe down and stop lying.

    You’re an insecure little Indian man acting the big lad on line.

    LOL fucking attention seeker

  46. Joe


    Possibly. Next August. Bro in law is there until 2018. So that could be a reason to get out there as well.

    Rather it be with a new manager next August though.

  47. Frank Mc

    540 Games
    462 Goals
    216 Assists
    36 Hattricks
    5 Ballon d’Ors
    3 Golden Boot
    2 UEFA Best Player

    WE, who is this shit player??

  48. WengerEagle


    Joe loves an online scrap doesn’t he? 😀

    Btw sorry not to have replied to your earlier post, I get your point about factoring in history and prestige in European competition when talking about how big clubs are but if we were going by that logic, Villa, Celtic, Nottingham Forest, PSV and Red Star are all bigger clubs than Arsenal or Man City.

    Ajax last won the UCL in 1995 and haven’t looked competitive in there for well over a decade, just not sure how they merit a higher ranking than Manchester United based on that.

    And since 2004, Barcelona have been dominant both domestically and in Europe to a freakish level winning 4 UCL’s and 8 league titles along with multiple Spanish Cups.

    Bayern have won 2 Champions Leagues in the last 15 years in comparison to Barcelona’s 4 in 10 years.

    Real Madrid and Barcelona are the clear top 2 for me and that’s factoring in along with thir recent UCL wins how dominant Real were from late 90’s to early 2000’s.

  49. Frank Mc

    “Rather it be with a new manager next August though.”

    Joe this is what the majority of sane, realistic Arsenal supporters want….

  50. Sam

    You’d think idiot is from Finsbury park n last time he saw Arsenal in action was 3years ago

    Pierre is right, really wasting time here having convo with ice hockey cunts
    What about Redbutt n Bumford?

  51. Dissenter

    We have struggled with early Saturday [noon] kickoffs.
    We’ll probably concede two gaols in five minutes the first time we play on Friday night.

  52. Bishop

    Klopp has destroyed Conte with tactics..

    Watch next week as Wenger goes tactics-less as usual sitting on his hands and gets killed by Conte.

  53. Sam

    I said honeymoon will be over soon
    Chelsea getting spanked
    Man city too will start dropping points soon

    This is the premiership

  54. Frank Mc

    WE, (off piste but) have you listened to Dean Saunders talking about signing for Clough’s Forest?

    Fucking long winded but very funny…

  55. Cesc Appeal

    Liverpool looked very impressive there, Chelsea very flat, need to change things up and get at Liverpool from the off second half.

    For our game tomorrow anyway, need three points obviously, but we need to see a much better, more solid performance all round, I would go with:

    Bellerin, Mustafi, Kozz, Monreal
    Elneny, Xhaka, Caz
    Iwobi, Giroud/Perez, Sanchez

    There needs to be consequences for Ozil’s poor showings of late and lack of application, he is not untouchable at a club like ours, or shouldn’t be anyway.

    Gives us plenty of options off the bench as well and I feel that middle will be far more solid and controlling than our current set up of Coq, Caz and Ozil as a middle which is flimsy as they come.

  56. WengerEagle

    Ah, right on cue Marbleballs!

    Money you say, explains why PSG and Man City are tearing down walls in the UCL and Chelsea have won an eye watering 1 UCL scrapping it on penalties after getting their arses battered in for a combined 300 mins in the SF and Final.

    The spine of the Barcelona side that won 3 UCL’s from 2006-2011 in Messi, Iniesta, Xavi cost an extortionate zero pounds.

  57. WengerEagle

    Frank Mc

    Nope, saw a documentary on Francis signing for them though and the ‘debate’ between Revie and Clough about Leeds.

    Guy was a gem, ahead of his time in so many ways as he had more charisma and personality than 10 Mourinho’s.

  58. Bishop


    If you think We will play chlesea off the park as Liverpool has done them good luck to you.

    I know one thing is for sure.Playing the likes of Chamberlain against Chelsea will only end in one thing
    The thing is…wait till next week.

  59. The Iceman

    Cesc appeal

    Clueless predicted line up.

    One good game and ospina is in goal.

    Cazorla is now a starter in your midfield after you wanting him canned for the last 2 years for not being physical enough, even though this is football not rugby.

    Makes sense leaving the most creative outlet we have on the bench.

  60. STV

    Barca Bayern and Real have huge finances but they weren’t aquired through sugar daddies like City and Chelsea. If you’re more successful you’ll be bloody rich.

  61. Bishop

    Wenger won’t drop Ozil..he doesn’t have the balls Moreso Ozil hasn’t signed the thing yet so Wenger won’t drop him.

    Chamberlain is the one I don’t want to see again if possible.

  62. WengerEagle

    Didn’t say they were paupers you imbecile, said that they won all of those trophies with their 3 best players along with Busquets, Pedro, Valdes and Puyol costing nothing.


    Cheers mate, will watch later as I’m on a phone with spotty connection.

  63. Bishop


    Bell Koss Mustafi Monreal

    Elneny Xhaka

    Iwobi Perez Sanchez

    Giroud, Coq,Ospina,Theo, Holding, Gibbs.,Cazorla

    For me that’s my team

  64. STV

    Barca were broke during early 2000s. They’re mega rich now.

    Athletico and Juve finances are steadly improving.

    All because of their on field success

    Big clubs like Ajax Milan and Inter were sadly left behind.

  65. Bishop


    He already confirmed Cech starts tomorrow

    Cech isn’t bad either so am Ok with either.

    My agenda is against playing Chamberlain and let Coq and Carzola rest now.

    Elneny and Xhaka can come in now

  66. Frost


    biased is saying that Arsenal will always be my team even if it were behind Charlton Athletic in league one.”

    That’s called being a fan Dissenter. Stin if they somehow get relegated to league one. Nothing biased there. Being biased is claiming you’re better than other teams, even when you somehow know you not. I do this quite alot when talking to rival fans tbf.

    “It’s fantasy to place Arsenal in the top 10 when we havent won a a league title in 12 years nor qualified for the quarter finals of the CL in 6 seasons.”

    That wasn’t the teams who have won the league list. If it was Celtic would be in there. We have a very good squad. Two attacking players/a new manager away from being contenders. The only team in world football not on that list that you could say may be above Arsenal is United. Based on their last 3 seasons, you won’t see me putting them there.

  67. kc

    You fucking fools keep acting like going to a game and giving Kroenke and Co money is something to be proud of. PT Barnum was right, a sucker is born every minute. Arsenal is a Circus act now.

  68. Sam

    Chelsea cunts lost tonight, all the fake gooners now are foking miserable
    Another defeat they’ll give up on Conte, they’ll only have Guardiola left to idolise

    shameless gloryhunters

  69. Bamford10


    Lucas’s future is through the center. He was a non-entity as a wide player; it was as a CF that he truly impressed.

  70. Bamford10


    Except that many of us like and rate Klopp. So Liverpool doing well supports our take on things; it doesn’t contradict it. You over-simplify the various currents here, which isn’t much of a surprise given you’re a bit of a special needs case. You keep up the brainless cheerleading, though, and please tell us more about Chuba Akpom. 😉

  71. Cesc Appeal


    More than likely, was not a predicted line up, just my preference. I believe in running a meritocracy, Ospina had an outstanding game, keeps the start, Ozil has been poor and Caz has been good, keeps the start.

    Ozil is fantastic and could easily completely smash it tomorrow, equally he could jog about the pitch looking like he’s in a sulk for eighty five minutes before turning it on for five minutes. Just want to see us acting like a big side and letting him know that is unacceptable.

    If we’re going with Ozil, drop Caz and play Xhaka and Elneny, in most line ups for me it is either Caz or Ozil, not both…unless it is relatively weak opposition at home.