Last season, Arsenal had Olivier Giroud as our main striker, with his main competitor Danny Welbeck out injured for most of the year, and the dismal failure of an experiment of moving Theo Walcott into the centre. No wonder we failed to score the goals we needed to challenge Leicester for the title.
This season is vastly different. We have the excellent Alexis Sanchez as our main striker, Giroud is now a proven supersub that gives us a plan B; Lucas Perez waiting in the wings to take advantage of any slipups by the main two; and now we have Danny Welbeck back in contention as well. This augurs well for the second half of the season.
Arsenal have already scored 30% more League goals this season, and we are surely going to improve on that in the second half of the campaign with the riches at our disposal, but how are we going to fit all those strikers into the team , and in what order?
Welbeck only rejoined the squad late last season, but chimed in with many important goals for us, and Le Prof seems pretty certain that the England international is ready to pick up where he left off last season. “Some players have big injuries and you observe them in the first three months and you think, ‘my friend, you will struggle’ because they have a handbrake,” Wenger said. “But some players come back like they have never been injured and he is one of them.
“He is a young, promising striker – he has a fantastic spirit and people sense that. He is genuine, committed and humble and you do not find that too many times together.
“He has pace, good technique and is committed – he wants to help the team. He is a good finisher as well and before he got injured you could see that was coming out.
“Suddenly it was coming and so he was stopped just at the wrong moment.”
It’s great to know that Welbeck is back to full fitness so quickly, and he nearly scored last week when he replaced Alexis for the last 10 minutes against Swansea. I doubt very much that Wenger will play him from the start tomorrow but I feel confident that he will bring him on for at least 20 minutes this afternoon if everything is going to plan. Who would bet against him coming on and scoring to give Wenger even more selection headaches going forward?