Can Wenger risk any Arsenal rotating against Newcastle?

The final Champions League game this week gave Arsene Wenger a great chance to rest a few of his overworked Arsenal players because there was little riding on the result. So with the festive period about to provide a stern test of the Gunners squad, with six games in the space of three weeks, the boss eagerly took the opportunity to give the likes of Alexis, Welbeck, Cazorla and Gibbs a break.

Now I wonder whether the Frenchman might be tempted to do the same thing again, to a lesser extent, for the visit of Newcastle United on Saturday evening. The way the second string performed in Turkey could well have given Wenger some food for thought and there are players that could do with another game off after featuring so heavily in the season so far.

One that is probably most in need of a break is Per Mertesacker, even though he has retired from international football duty with Germany, as the defender has been ever present due to the injury problems of Laurent Koscielny and the lack of sufficient cover in the squad. Only Alexis has started more games, but with Chambers suspended and a Newcastle side coming off the defeat of Chelsea to face, I cannot see our BFG getting any time off just yet.

One player who is in with a good chance of playing again after the Galatasaray game is Lukas Podolski and that could mean that Danny Welbeck gets another rest. Our new striker could then be fresh to come off the bench if needed, for the German or Olivier Giroud. Podolski has proved again how useful he can be, but would you start him ahead of Welbeck? And are there any more first team regulars you world rest ahead of the festive period?

Tags Mertesacker Podolski welbeck


  1. Robin Vanpayslip says:

    What he believes is his strongest team is not very strong. Fingers crossed he rests a few of his favorite’s.

    1. Budd says:

      That would mean to rest Sanchez and I’m sure you don’t want that.

      1. Robin Vanpayslip says:

        1 out of 11. That is how you justify your comments.

        1. Budd says:

          What? Do you want Ramsey rested too? Or Cazorla? Just sayin’

  2. henry12 says:


    If ramsey is not fit


    1. Mesut O-grillz says:

      entitle this the “Living on a Prayer” Lineup

  3. Greg says:

    No! This game is of utmost importance, we need to play our strongest team available against a newcastle side playing with a lot of belief and fight! 3 crucial important points is at stake! Coyg!

  4. Aggelos says:

    And I’m just sitting here, waiting for Rosicky to get some playing time.

    1. Mesut O-grillz says:

      not sure who has made more appearances for our club this season – Diaby or Rosicky.

    2. KickAssFan says:

      Hey, eh, sorry if u are a lady and I mistook u for a guy. But well, a lady or a guy, no probs at all.

      1. KickAssFan says:


      2. Aggelos says:

        No worries. I’m a guy by the way, heh. I was just asking a question.

        1. fullmetalalc says:

          Is he currently injured? I haven’t seen him play since the League cup defeat since Southampton. I guess Tomas, Campbell, Poldi and Ospina will get some game time once the FA cup starts.

  5. Mesut O-grillz says:

    This is a dangerous time to be so thin in the back. Newcastle is fresh beating the Vincibles last week and will prob pounce on our tattered form this Saturday. We are SOL on so many levels.

    1. sevenitti says:

      Vincibles, i like it! ^^

  6. NIKK says:

    Who knows…Arsene Wenger’s mind works in mysterious ways.

  7. Greg says:

    Not just thomas rosicky i want to see with some game time! Joel campbell and “prince” podolski needs the game time just as well! Coyg!

    1. KickAssFan says:

      I don’t care who plays, just get the 3 points.

  8. SoOpa AeoN says:

    “can’t see BFG coming off yet” as if he’s been doing one hell of a Job #smirks#

    1. KickAssFan says:

      Really would be nice to have Boscielny and Chambers together at the back. A back four of Gibbs, Boscielny, Chambers and Debuchy____Not particularly against Newcastle


      1. Mesut O-grillz says:

        I just don’t know why all this hate for Per came outta the wood works this season. People were asking him to be captain all of last season. I’m not saying that he’s been playing that great this season, but damn y’all it could be worse

        1. mike says:

          Simple, it’s called reactionary responses as opposed to appreciating what it is he does actually bring. He needs a solid pairing to be at his best, and he has had some lack-luster performances, but many fans way underrate him. I wish our opponents did, too.

        2. jaweant says:

          Seriously, Chambers cost us the Stoke game. Lets give him a rest. Too bad Hayden’s injured

  9. ruelando says:

    its the festive season everyone will get a piece of the action

    My question is he has Ajayi training regular with the team and refuse to give him a run, he is actually quite good in the air and tackles ok

  10. Twig says:

    We have no option but to rotate. I think we might even struggle to get 7 subs for Saturday. With our injury woes and suspensions, this seems the most likely line up

    ____Sanchez Cazorla Campbell
    __________Ox Flamini
    Bellerin Zelalem Mertesacker Debuchy

    Anyway, Wenger knows best 😀

    1. mobaygunner says:

      O u would rather have camble instead ofppodolski??…what did joel do the regain his place in this game?..just curious to know

  11. fred cowardly says:


  12. Gundam says:

    Giroud at 60mins from the bench… Give Prince some time.

  13. sevenitti says:

    Not only that, but are we capable of rotating? The defense is selfpicked due to injuries and suspensions. The midfield is kind of selfpicked as well, Ramsey will play alongside Flamini. The question is if Wenger will play Podolski on the left wing, Sanchez on the right – or his usual Sanchez/Cazorla/Ox-lineup with Welbeck on top, with Giroud coming on after 60 minutes (or vice versa)

    If we manage to get a good lead before 60 minutes, then Campbell should sub the right winger.

    Whats the best line-up? I’ll say the one with Podolski featuring Welbeck, with Giroud coming on after 60 minutes (preferably for Welbeck), but chances are (99%) that wenger disagrees.

    1. fullmetalalc says:

      I’d rather have OX and Sanchez on the wings with Cazorla in the middle with Welbeck up top. Both Giroud and Poldi do great as impact subs. If we can’t get a goal by the 65th minute bring them on. But knowing Wenger, its unlikely it would happen.

      1. fullmetalalc says:

        So that makes it Kos, Monreal, Ramsey, Wilshere, Diaby, Ozil, Walcott, Ospina out with injury. When will the management accept that such a high rate of injuries is not purely down to luck and that there is something wrong with the training methods. Look at Chelsea, they play the same team everytime and have nowhere near the injuries we have.

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