Should Arsenal play Nketiah against Forest and save Jesus for the Chelsea game?

There is a theory growing among our Arsenal fan base that Gabriel Jesus should be rested this weekend, preventing him from getting a yellow card which would make him unavailable for the clash at Chelsea.

One of the words Mikel Arteta has used while top of the table, which I like, is humble, essentially reminding everyone not to get carried away and that there is a lot of football to be played till we can start celebrating.

The arrogance of some of my peers astounds me. A young Arsenal team yet to achieve anything, who found the pressure of a race for top 4 too much to handle, who finished a whopping 24 points behind the Champions, are now apparently so good we can start hand picking what Prem fixtures we can afford to be resting our best talent?

Let’s not get carried away after 11 games. We have been good, but not good enough to be taking any opposition lightly. That’s what we would be doing to Nottingham Forest if we did anything else but put out the strongest line up possible to get a crucial three points.

I’m sure if Jesus had his choice, he rather go to Stamford Bridge in form with his mini goal drought over, rather than having not played out of fear he will get a suspension?

The fear for some Gooners is if our main striker can’t start the Derby, the alternative would be Eddie Nketiah!

Which Is a slight contradiction.

You either think Eddie is good enough for this level or you don’t.

If you do, then you shouldn’t have any fear what match he starts in. Yet if we are at a stage where a player needs to miss a match because he’s on 4 yellow cards and you don’t trust his replacement to cover ……. then maybe we shouldn’t be paying that replacement 100,000 pound a week!

Just say that out load!

We are paying 100,000 pound a week for a forward who the thought of starting against a top 6 rival, scares fans to the point they are worried about Jesus’ yellow card count.

I know the same people who defended the 23 year old’s contract extension/salary who want him to start on Sunday, purely so Jesus can be free for Chelsea.

I’d rather be perceived as negative but be brave enough to commit myself to an opinion, than wait for after the fact, when it’s too late.

Just like In January, there were supporters like me screaming that our actions in that transfer window would cost us dearly.

Others, who can’t have a bad word said about the club, were positive for the sake of positivity. Then waited until it was too late to question the idea of slashing the wage bill and giving away our best striker for nothing.

When it was obvious in the summer that there was too much pressure on Martinelli, Jesus and Saka to be our main source of goals and I questioned if Eddie was good enough, I was called every name imaginable.

Even though we never replaced Auba and then lost Laca too.

I remember fan channels demanding we buy two strikers and only because of our great start have we let Edu get away with it.

By that logic, why the fear if Jesus gets booked this weekend?

Where’s your faith in Eddie gone?

He’s no longer a teenager who can hide behind youth. He’s being paid a hell a lot of money to be sitting there like a competition winner, not with the self-belief he belongs on this stage. To be a big club you act like one, and there needs to be a greater expectation on him.

When Bendtner was earning that much, fans wouldn’t leave him alone and he was at least scoring for us.

Eddie’s played over 100 times for us so is no longer a rookie. If you want to defend him and say a lot of those have been off the bench, that’s not a defence. That’s a reflection on what his manager sees on the training pitch.

If he saw someone capable of 15-20 goals a season, he would be playing.

The new deal was Arsenal protecting value on an asset. It’s Arteta’s job to get the best out of the resources he has, and it wouldn’t help the players confidence to know he’s only starting against Forest because he’s not trusted to feature when it really matters.

Or is he comfortable earning a massive wage and judged purely on the cup competitions?

Would you start Jesus on Sunday and risk him getting a yellow card?

Or can we trust Eddie against Chelsea If the worse were to happen?

Dan

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13 Comments

  1. Better play Nketiah tomorrow in Netherlands and play Jesus against Nottingham Forest, because all EPL games are more intense than the ones in EL group phase and equally important for our top four finish aspiration

    I’m sure Jesus will try his best not to get another yellow card. Even if Jesus gets it at the Nott’m Forest game, I believe Nketiah can score at Stamford Bridge as he did last season

  2. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bushes.

    Play one game at a time, play Jesus against Forest and secure that three points first.

    It is as simple as that.

  3. Eddie’s played and scored against teams like Chelsea before (including Chelsea themselves I think)…
    I just think he needs to play more in general – he’s being judged on very little atm, and jesus needs a break imo

    1. You are right. Eddie played against Chelsea and Manchester last season. He was preferred to Lacazette at that point which necessitated his contract renewal.

      It’s not fair fans to rate Eddie by EL alone as the quality of players we play along him in the competition is not exactly the same with those who play in the PL.

      I expect the coach to play him more. Same with the likes of Lokonga and probably Holding.

      1. Hopefully not holding but lokonga needs more playing time grow and I’m not sure why so many are down on Nketiah. He showed what he is capable of when counted on consistently with creative talent around him!

  4. Usual rambling about Auba.
    He was no longer worth anything to us. He totally disrespected the club and his teammates and getting him out the dooor was the only sensible thing to do.
    Short term it may have looked like a loss financially, but we are reaping the benefits now.
    You keep going on about last season being a disaster, but it wasn’t. The foundations for our future are being laid, but it does take time to make us title contenders again. After all, we haven’t really been challenging for at least 10 years.

    As for Nketiah, I trust Arteta and his team to select players after a serious consideration of what is best, not only for the immediately upcoming games, but also for the overall benefit of our long term plan. And if that means giving Nketiah his first start in the PL this season, it is fine by me.

  5. Yes he should be giving the chance. He is nt my favourite but d guy is ok.
    He hasn’t been giving much chances, am sure he would have gotten more than 5 goals if he start 12 Premier league games like jesus. But then jesus contribute in other vital areas that also helps the team

  6. But did Nkethia not start against Chelsea at the Bridge last season in the Epl? And he played very well for Arsenal in the match scoring as he helped the Gunners won the match.
    However, that was last season. This Arsenal season this season is a different one to that of their last season when they finished 5th as against this their present season that is seeing them in great form of their lives to be on top of the League after playing 11 games.
    Caution!!! Arteta MUST get his Arsenal choices for PSV, Nott For and Chelsea very correct to the letter. But not makes the mistake about it to not get any of his choices correct for any of the next Arsenal 3 matches. Which if gotten wrong could lead to the Gunners failing to not win all their next 3 games for Arsenal.
    Arsenal MUST quickly return to the winning ways in the Epl in their pursuit to win the League this season after the disappointing 1-1 draw game that the Gunners played to at away to Southampton last Sunday. A PL match which Arsenal should have won comfortably despite the Pgmo anti-Arsenal match referring in the match. But profigancy in front of the Saints goal by the Gunners let Arsenal down to win the match.
    Therefore, whoever may be the striker, G Jesus or E Nkethia who Arsenal may start to lead the line in their next 3 matches, the important thing is that Arsenal MUST win all the 3 matches unfailingly. But for them to achieve the 3 wins and move on to the next level of things in the Epl winning. And continue to win in the other competitions. Imperatively, Arteta, his coaching staff and the Gunners themselves too MUST compulsorily worked on the Arsenal profigancy in front of goal issue in training sessions to overcome the issue. And overcome it totally. So that they will give themselves the good chance to win their next 3 games. Which if they won, the wins will propel them to win more, more and greater wins this season.

  7. I would play Nketiah at PSV and at home to Forest to give Jesus a good break and be ready for Chelsea..

    Have to be smart re the yellow cards also ahead of the World Cup break

    If Eddie is not good enough against Forest we have bigger issues

  8. The Forrest game would be a more tougher preposition than the game at the bridge simply because we know how to beat Chelsea. I am more cautious of the next epl game but let’s stay positive

  9. Great article and a position we shouldn’t have found ourselves in. I like Eddie and I really want him to do well. I think he has a lot of great attributes and always looks dangerous when he plays. I think he has shown he is a pretty natural finisher and a good asset to have. But I just don’t think he is quite good enough.

    I put out an article recently asking what positions we needed to strength in the next window and made a claim for Jonathan David from Lille being brought in. He’s 22 and a fan of the club already. He has outstanding statistics when it comes to pressing that rival anyone in Europe, can play as a lone striker or operate on the wing and can find the net, too.

    Someone in the comments said he thought David and Balogun are about the same level, which I vehemently disagree with. If he was, he would be back at the club instead of on loan. Someone like David, who is the right age, displays all the attributes Arteta wants and sees in Jesus and is a fan of Arsenal. It’s a no-brainer for me and would prevent this quandary arising again.

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