This summer seems to have passed quicker than the previous one. Constant football, thanks to the World Cup, did make it easier for me. From now on we should have a regular dose of Arsenal as there are plenty of preseason fixtures for the first team as well as reserves.
I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s game just to see the guys on the pitch. We can’t read much from the team selections and the football isn’t going to be at the highest level but that’s not the point of this game.
Chamakh and Koscielny in an Arsenal shirt for the first time – that’s a point. Based on this game we can’t really say how these two will perform in the big games but we can certainly see some of their individual skills like speed, jump, strength, and so on.
Wilshere, JET, Lansbury and other kids getting closer to the first team – that’s another. Wilshere was brilliant in the preseason last year so it will be interesting to see if he can better himself. Similarly, we can see how other youngsters perform in comparison. I’ve my doubts about the usefulness of some loan spells so the preseason is a good time to see the improvements if any.
It’s interesting to note that we have the likes of Ignasi Miquel and Havard Nordveit in the squad. I’m not sure either of them will come close to the first team this year. That’s just my opinion based on the few games I’ve seen. Perhaps, Arsene wants to see them in action before deciding on the future plans. It could also be that we don’t really have other central defenders right now so he has to take these kids along!
Randall, Watt, Hoyte and Simpson are notable absentees. I guess they’ve run out of chances. Randall and Simpson I can completely understand but Watt and Hoyte might still develop into much better players. Time will tell if that happens at Arsenal or elsewhere.
Some see this game as the time when Arsene decides his group for the tour of Austria but I’m not convinced about that. He probably takes his decision more based on the performances in training rather than in this game. That seems to be the reason why someone like Barazite has been missing out despite scoring in the last three fixtures.
I don’t want to get into detailed pre-game analysis for such a fixture. It’s just about having a good time and starting a process of easing back into the routine. Let’s just have some fun.