I am not trying to say that Arsenal will have a nice and easy game on Saturday, when our perennial tormentors Stoke City come to the Emirates Stadium to get the Premier League action up and running again. I just think that the Potters of Mark Hughes will be quite a different proposition to the one that we normally have to deal with when coming up against them.
The same might be true when we go to the Britannia stadium in January, as their pitch has been extended to come into line with the standard size wanted by the EPL and also as Hughes is no longer playing the same brand of football as Tony Pulis.
Stoke are still a very physical team but not quite to the extent that they used to be and on Saturday they are likely to be without two of their chief enforcers; with our old friend Ryan Shawcross out of action due to a long term injury problem in his back (altogether now aaahhh) and their Scottish midfielder Charlie Adam having been one of two Stoke players red carded in their last league game against West Brom.
Stoke also sold Steven N´Zonzi to Sevilla in the summer, so all in all the Arsenal players´ shins, ankles and all should be getting a much easier time of it than usual this weekend.
The former Barcelona player Ibrahim Afellay was the other player sent off and that also takes away some control and creativity from their midfield but their new signing Xherdan Shaqiri and the likes of Bojan will still encourage their manager to play football. Hopefully that will play right into Arsenal hands, as long as we are on our game of course.