Arsenal fans are not used to seeing our players included on the shortlist for the Ballon D’Or award given each year to the player judged to have been the best over the course of a calendar year, so perhaps we should not really be too surprised that no Gunners are on the list again this year.
Arsene Wenger was pretty upbeat at the Arsenal AGM this week, talking about the strength and depth of the current squad and how it gives the Gunners a good chance of competing for the Premier League title, even though the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool, Man City and Tottenham are making it look like the closest campaign in a long time.
Our French manager has completed 20 years in charge at Arsenal, and according to the vibes coming out of yesterday’s AGM it would seem that there is the wish amongst the owner and Board that he can carru on in charge for many more seasons.
So Arsenal reserves came to impress Arsene Wenger, but the Championship side Reading had a little flurry at the start. In fact they had 75% possession in the first 15 minutes! Slowly but surely the Gunners took control but the pace was a little pedestrian but the passing was mostly accurate.
We all knew that this was going to be a completely different team to the one that faced Middlesbrough at the weekend, but Wenger has really pushed the boat for this League Cup game.
So it seems that the Arsenal and France centre forward Olivier Giroud is fit again after the mystery toe injury that I for one am still a bit dubious about. For reasons of fitness, injury, form or whatever else, the big striker has yet to start a game this season, for Arsenal anyway as he did start once for his country in the September international break.
Any Arsenal fans expecting an easy ride in tonight’s fourth round EFL cup clash might want to rein in their expectations a little, according to both Arsene Wenger and the captain of Reading, Paul McShane, despite the fact that the Gunners are playing at home against lower league opposition.
Arsene Wenger has made it perfectly clear that he will resting Arsenal’s first team players for tonights visit of Reading in the League Cup, but according to one Arsenal old-boy, Charlie Nicholas, the reserves should still be able to easily beat the Championship side.