To be perfectly plain, Arsenal do not have a lot of options about who to bring into the starting line up to replace the newly injured Arsenal players Mikel Arteta and Francis Coquelin, so the French midfielder was always going to get the job anyway, but I do feel that Mathieu Flamini could be the ideal player to step in and help the Gunners to steady the ship after the setback of losing to West Brom.
I am not just saying this because of the news about Flamini being on the verge of making billions from his sideline into the oil substitute Levulinic acid or whatever it is called, although if he is reading this and fancies sending me a few shares I would not complain.
I just feel that Flamini has the same fighting qualities that Arsenal will miss while Coquelin is recovering from injury and he is also a leader on the pitch and that could be crucial for the next few games and weeks. Flamini may not have the technical ability of a Cazorla or Ozil or the speed of a Walcott or Bellerin but I challenge you to name a player more committed to the cause. It is clear that having a player like that in the middle allows Cazorla to flourish.
If you doubt me then I would just point you to the north London derby in the Capital One cup when he saw the need and grasped the bull by the horns and shocked us all with a brilliant brace. And the way he defended his team mates and put the focus straight onto the next game after West Brom speaks volumes about his character.
He told Arsenal Player, “The penalty, it can happen and Santi falling… there is nothing you can do. We tried and tried and tried until the last minute but we can’t give any excuses – today we lost the three points.
“It’s a shame because we started the game well, we went 1-0 up and then after they scored [twice] before half time it became more difficult for us.
“We tried to push on in the second half, we had some opportunities but of course it is disappointing because we didn’t get any points.
“Sometimes it happens and now it is important to recover and focus on the next game.”
So is Flamini not just our only option but actually an ideal one?