We are always hearing a lot about character in the football world, but too often in the past it has been the lack of character in the Arsenal team that has been the subject of discussion for the football media. Last season, for instance, Arsene Wenger kept insisting that his players had the right character but there was not a lot of evidence to back him up as we slipped from top spot at Christmas to hand Leicester City the title.
I know a lot of Arsenal fans will disagree with me but I am not picking Theo Walcott as my Man of the Match from the 4-1 thumping of Hull City just to be different. I have seen a lot of the papers going on about Alexis Sanchez but for me the Chilean was not at his best and should have scored the penalty after taking it from the usual man Cazorla. In fact the closest to Walcott for me were Francis Coquelin and Alex Iwobi but Theo got the nod because he really stretched Hull with his pace and movement and took hos goal very well.
One of the big questions on the lips of Arsenal fans before the Premier League win over Hull City this weekend was whether Arsene Wenger would hand the big money summer signing Granit Xhaka his third start of the season or leave him on the bench for the third match in a row.
Arsenal are in France as they await to take on French champions PSG in the Champions League group stages, and Coqueiln believes the midfield battle will be key.
The Gunners boss has a conundrum on his hands as he looks to steer his side to get a result against Paris Saint-Germain today, with a number of midfielders vying for roles in the first-team.
Even with Arsenal having allowed Jack Wilshere to go and join Premier League club AFC Bournemouth on loan for the season and with Aaron Ramsey not expected back in action from his hamstring injury until next weekend, the Arsenal defensive midfielder Francis Coquelin could well find himself sat on the bench today as the Gunners play host to Southampton.
With just a day to go before the Arsenal get the Premier League campaign underway, I assume that Arsene Wenger already knows what starting line up he will pick to take on Liverpool at the Emirates. With the injury and fitness problems the boss has to cope with, both ends of the pitch are lacking in options but as usual our midfield is packed with options and is our strongest area of the pitch.
Well that did not take long Arsene! Just a few days after Arsenal fans were given the bad news about our seemingly constant problems on the injury front striking at the heart of the Gunners back line, with the German World Cup winning centre back Per Mertesacker ruled out for a significant part of the season, the Daily Star have reported that the boss may have already found the solution.
I have to think that Arsene Wenger was having a little bit of fun with the football media this week, as he spoke about some recent Arsenal transfer rumours. The Frenchman was being asked about the Jamie Vardy saga after the England international striker opted to stay at Leicester City and sign a contract extension with the current Premier League champions (that still sounds strange).