It all rests on this lads and ladettes. Arsene Wenger has staked his season on winning the league cup. He blew out the FA Cup at the weekend resting key players, his gamble blew up in his face, now he has to go hard at Chelsea over two legs.
It’s going to be tough. The team news doesn’t look good. Ozil is rumoured to be out with a knee injury according to the reliable AFCcamden on Twitter. Worst thing about this supposed problem is I can’t help but think it’s induced by the notion of ‘MAYBE SOMEONE WILL SIGN ME NOW.’ Add to that the continued absence of Kolasinac, Ramsey, Koscielny and Monreal. Then factor in that Granit Xhaka has an injury. Then remember that Iwobes will likely be tired from heavy raving from last night.
What a pickle we’re in.
Now the good news is if we make it out of the Bridge unscathed, the boss will have a full squad to pick from in the return leg. If we’re absolutely trounced because our back 3 is Mertesacker, Chambers and Holding. Well, it won’t make for pretty reading on Thursday morning. I noted on a podcast or something I did a few weeks ago that Arsenal always has an annual week or two when we drop out of everything. Tomorrow, if it doesn’t work out, could be our 3rd trophy gone of the year.
Chelsea are looking strong, though we put up a good fight at the Emirates a few weeks ago, a firing Morata could have had them winning by 3 goals. That said, we have our fair share of chances, so you just don’t know. My concern is our back 3 were ruffled by an 18-year-old Stoke reject at the weekend. What the fuck are they going to do against a feisty Hazard? How are they going to deal with a Conte who is going to target our defence? I’m even more concerned moving forward. Who are we going to play in midfield? Are we at Elneney levels? Do we have to play Iwobi straight after he’s been destroyed by The Sun? Who is going to create for a misfiring Lacazette?
All the ingredients are there for a tanking, and I have to say, I’m really fearing it.
I mean, even worse, Alexis Sanchez is going to be playing at 70%. He’ll know if he pulls a hamstring tomorrow night, his chances of a move to Manchester City are all but over for 6 months. He’s our only hope, but also our most likely source of let down.
The squad issues we all saw coming since this time last year are well and truly coming home to roost and explode under their own toxic shittiness.
Still, it must be remembered that we all had similar fears heading into the FA Cup final, and the squad dug deep and bailed Wenger out of a hole, making the reward of a new contract all the easier for Stan to award. The manager is often down on his luck, but he is the master of his own mediocrity and has an elite ability to make sure he always does a great job of average.
Let’s see what he brings to the table tomorrow…
Also, listen to the podcast, we’ll be recording a new one for your ears on Thursday morning!