Even though it is still pre-season and Arsenal will still have one more match to play after the Emirates Cup before the Premier League season kicks off properly, I think Arsene Wenger and t5he Arsenal fans will be looking for a performance from the Gunners this weekend that suggests that we are going to be ready to kick off the new campaign in fine form.
After the poor performance and emphatic 3-0 defeat to Chelsea last weekend I reckon Arsenal could do with bouncing back at the first opportunity and that comes tomorrow against the Portuguese champions Benfica and their new signing from the Arsenal youth system Chris Willock.
Of course the boss is going to play some of the younger Gunners and some of the fringe squad memebres who you would maybe not expect to start in the Premier League, but I would like to see him kick off our own competition with the strongest possible XI.
As Theo Walcott says in a report on the Arsenal website, the Emirates Cup is the perfect preparation for the new season as we are pretty close to the start and want to be confident and show that the team is ready to rock.
The England forward said, “It’s time to get in the right frame of mind, play against strong teams on a nice pitch, and just do the right things, the things that get you into the team. You want to win as well, to get into the winning habit. We tend to have quite a good record at that.
“We’ve lost the opening game of the season over the past few years I think, so we need to make sure that pattern changes this year. We’re playing against strong teams in all the games we’re playing in pre-season, so there’s no excuse for a slow start.
“This team’s had ups and downs but we need to start well first. Starting well is the main priority and then we’ve got to push on from there.
“The manager has said that right from the first day here: make sure there’s a fast start. That’s why it’s important for us to play these bigger teams in pre-season, to be mentally ready and switched on. We need to get into good habits, that’s the main thing. It’s all about a positive start, and results will make that happen.”
I agree and even though the Community Shield against Chelsea next weekend is not that important in the grans scheme of things I think we need to show that last weekend was a blip and just as a fast start in the Premier League is important I think a strong start to our Emirates Cup would be handy so let’s not have some inexperienced young midfielder playing on the right of defence.
Would you like to see Wenger start with as strong an Arsenal XI as possible tomorrow?