Two days to go to the start of the PL with our game against the Shakespearean Foxes. Of course OGAAT is the only way to approach every PL encounter and Wenger has set the team a target of 85 points, ten more than last season. Whether that will be enough to win the title remains to be seen, as the Chavs won it last time with an impressive 93 points. But there is no point focussing on a target too much in the heat of the season; every game counts and is a battle for three points each and every time.
With the PL being our main competition to really focus on, Wenger will have the rare luxury to save his best players for the 39 vital games ahead. The FA cup games don’t start till January and, after winning it three times in the last four seasons, he could decide to rest his key players for this tournament too. The UEFA league is a great competition to mix youth with back up players and those first team players in need of match fitness.
it does appear to help teams when they can just concentrate on the PL, as the Chavs and the Foxes have shown us recently. The beauty for Arsene is that he can play more or less the same eleven until the crazy Festive period. The International breaks will provide some further rest for some players and Wenger seems to have good arrangements in place with the key international managers regarding using players sparingly whenever possible.
I reckon playing the same eleven is key in getting consistency and a group mentality of winning every game. Of course, sometimes a tactical adjustment will be required, especially in midfield where the attack-horny Rambo may need to be replaced with a more disciplined midfielder – but less capable in supporting our attack – like Elneny or Le Coqster. So who are going to be the chosen eleven? These are my picks:
- Cech: solid, calm, experienced- will enjoy the coaching support from mad-Jens
- Nacho: passion, hunger, loves the shirt, experienced
- Koz: our leader and he so deserves to hold up PL silverware this time round
- Mustafi: another leader with great drive and passion
- Kola: first outings have been very promising; he and Nacho will own the left flank
- Bellerin/Ox: Ox will challenge Hector and offers better wing play in attack, but Hector is a solid defender and does seldom drop his concentration- he also signed a new contract …
- Rambo/Elneny: am a big fan of both. When we can afford it Rambo will start but when we need to be tight and sit back, Elneny is our man
- Xhaka: the conductor is, together with Ozil, the key player for us. Together they add that extra dimension to our game. Jack and Santi can provide back up, or even compete directly with Xhaka and Rambo, IF they can get back to full fitness. If they do, I predict a very strong season in all competitions.
- Alexis: will stay and once fully fit he will be a force once again. Wenger has alternatives in Welbeck and Iwobi
- Lacazette: looks like he will form a lethal partnership with Alexis and Ozil. When we played parked-bus teams, Giroud may proof a better option as CF. I can also see both Frenchies start together regularly.
- Ozil: will have plenty of freedom and can feed – and feed off – Alexis and Lacazette with his unreal passing ability- this could be his best season ever.
Well that is my first eleven fellow Gooners, but do you agree?