Arsenal are entering an absolutely crucial stage of the season, and Arsene Wenger has said that the next few games will define our season. With matches coming thick and fast in three competitions, the depth of the squad could be of vital importance in the coming weeks, and that is why I feel that the game against Blackburn Rovers today is the perfect one to bring back the Ivorian international forward Gervinho.
Before he left for the African Cup of Nations at the start of the year, Gervinho had fallen out of contention for a starting role with the Gunners, and his confidence had taken a bit of a kicking. Some very good performances and goals for Ivory Coast have restored his self-belief, and he could prove to be very useful for the rest of the season.
Wenger will probably want to rest a few players today, especially those carrying niggling injuries. He will wants to give the best players every chance of being available for Bayern Munich on Tuesday night. That probably means that Wilshere, Vermaelen and Koscielny will not be risked, but I would keep Walcott on the bench as well.
Blackburn are likely to defend deep, which will not leave much space for Theo to use his pace and get behind the defenders. Giroud, with his size and strength, will be able to fight for the ball and hold it up and link the play better than Theo. Gervinho can use his tricky feet on the right and cause Blackburn a lot of problems. It could be the perfect game for him to get his Arsenal career firmly back on track. He doesn’t need to worry too much, just try to beat defenders and get good balls into his team mates.
If he is doing okay but Arsenal are struggling, Wenger can always replace Giroud, whereas if it’s not happening for him, Wenger could replace Gervinho with Theo. His inclusion would offer a lot of options to Arsenal, and if he has a good game his confidence will increase again and he could be a very useful member of the squad for the rest of the season.