Which Arsenal players proved themselves ready for the Premier League?

There may not have been anything at stake in last night’s game against BATE, but the Arsenal second team at last showed that they are all fit and ready to challenge for a starting place in the Premier League. One player that looked back to his best was our captain (for the night) Theo Walcott, and he thinks that the lads that played did so without any pressure. He said after the game: “I’d say that it was a performance that everyone enjoyed. Tonight we had already qualified, we went out with a bit of freedom.

“The manager said to go out and enjoy ourselves, that there was no pressure. Us players want to be playing every game we can. That’s what we’re doing at this moment in time in the Europa League but now we need to take that into the Premier League. It’s great to get through to the next stage and there are a lot of players that will have given the manager a headache.

“As I said before, when called upon, we need to be ready for the Premier League. When you get your chance in the cup competitions, you’ve got to be able to take them. I think a lot of guys have done themselves proud tonight and not just tonight but throughout the whole group stage. Now we need to take this forward into the knockout stage, where it gets even more serious. There’s a lot of players that can raise their heads high, definitely.”

Jack Wilshere looked keen and ready to step up and scored his first goal for two and half years, Walcott was pro-active and Giroud was desperate to score, and of course the surprise of the night for me was seeing Debuchy looking like his old self after a very long time out of the spotlight. Jack also made it clear that his aim was to impress enough to fight his way back into contention. He said: “On a personal note it’s nice to get on the scoresheet. I was playing in a more central position and had a bit more license to get in the box and get off more shots. I enjoyed that role, but overall we knew that the match didn’t mean much, but it could have been one of those nights if we didn’t give it the right amount of focus, so we played some nice stuff, got some nice goals and are happy.

“This is Arsenal, we have top players and all I can do when I’m called upon in the Europa League and off the bench in the Premier League is give my all, but at the end of the day what matters is the team. The team have been on a good run, except at the weekend, but we’re confident in all of our players, that we can bounce back. We have a good squad here and it’s tough getting ahead of some of these players, so all I can do is try and do my best.”

There were lots of good play from our reserves last night, so who do you think played well enough to put themselves in contention for the first team game on Sunday at Southampton?



  1. John Ibrahim says:

    Chambers and Holding look good…but a little rusty…same with Wilshere

    1. Anko says:

      True, jack needs to play with the best players in the team so that he can increase his work rate, face better challenges, make better input, boost his confidence. And overall increase in his own confidence and ability. I was really happy to see him score that beautiful goal yesterday and I hope Wenger gives him a chance.

      1. muffdiver says:

        totally agree
        time to push boy wonder
        get him back to level we know he can play at

    2. john hodges says:

      why was i pleased about last night was the amount of english players in the team.

  2. Me says:

    Wilshere is never going to get back to full game fitness if he is not going to be given a chance.
    And Xhaka has been given far too many chances and failed to shine or inspire confidence.
    But this is Arsene Wenger and common sense decisions don’t always apply…

  3. gotanidea says:

    Welbeck has been displaying his pace, strength, runs, dribbles, work rate and teamwork in the Premier League this season. He showed that his athleticism and skills are quite threatening for Arsenal’s opponents.

    And I want to see Wilshere in a Premier League match after his excellent display last night. Yesterday he showed many lob through balls that are usually created by Sanchez in tight spaces.

    1. John says:

      Welbeck does not score goals……his primary job on the field………

  4. Juhi McLovin says:

    Walcott was directly involved in 5 goals yesterday. He scored 19 goalst last season, so he should be involved if there are injuries.

    Should we,turn back to back 4? We have conceded chunk load of goals this season despite playing with 3 CBs. Haven’t really been a revelation formation for us

    1. ThirdManJW says:

      We were a lot worse with a back four, apart from Wenger’s first decade of course. The reason we badly need a back 3 is because of Wenger’s refusal to have a natural DM. Remember a back 4 quickly becomes a back 2 when both wing-backs push up, and no DM, which has caused us so much trouble in the past. 3 at the back is better for dealing with counter-attacks.

      Since Wenger switched to a back 3 we’ve won a fair amount of big games, the FA Cup, and the Community Shield. I don’t mind Wenger switching things up, but my preference would be use the back 3 more often than not.

    2. muffdiver says:

      wtf man,
      if there are injuries theo should still be at home playing connect 4 with the missus

      yesterdays opponents were a joke , thats your benchmark?!
      theos amazing 19 goals was actually 10 in the premier league and 5 in the fa cup against minnows
      3 against teams like ludogrets and 1 just one against bayern

      he brings f all to the table bar the odd goal, hes been inconsistent for a decade
      trash player
      again wtf man

      1. jon fox says:


        1. muffdiver says:

          dont quibble foxy
          i am a passionate fellow, it results in colourful use of language
          plus mclovin is a cupcake of mine- he should know better 😉

          1. jon fox says:

            Muffdiver, I too use highly descriptive and very forceful language and welcome others who can state their thoughts in clear wiords. However the difference between you and I is that I see no place for educated and decent folk, ON PUBLIC SITES to use foul language. NOTE: FOUL IS NOT THE SAME AS COLOURFUL. To be clear, of course in private life , I use expletives from time to time. Most ordinary people also do. But NOT on public sites, read by children, unless you are an oaf.

  5. John Ibrahim says:

    We should rotate and change our formation to suit different opponents and strategy….

  6. Mitch Connor says:

    For this season we should use Holding, Chambers, Welbeck, Walcott, Wilshere. And hope for the best.

    We will never win the PL or CL with this squad of players though. Too many average players, not enough top players. We need to sign at least 6 top players for these positions:
    Ozil replacement
    Alexis replacement
    Another top forward

    This will NOT happen with Wenger in charge. He has been consistently keeping us a top 4 team and now has made us weaker by not keeping up with other top teams.

  7. jon fox says:

    The only one outfielder from last nights game who is ready at top PREM LEVEL is Wilshere. He is better than Iwobi and Xhaka certainly and should be playing at Saints on Sunday, preferably starting, since the training ground game last night was not a proper game, effort wise, since we totally bossed the game. Walcott played very well but he has amply proven over many years past his total unfitness in lack of committment and hunger to play at top level. Jacks problems were always down to injuries and he looks and plays as fit and well as he ever has, right now. I say outfielder, though, because OSPINA is a quality keeper who would easily walk into most PREM teams, were he sold. Wilshere is definitely well within our best available starting eleven and thus should play. I do not disrespect either Welbeck or Giroud who are also good players but right now they are not best eleven starters and both lacked sharpness last night.

  8. Robin Vanpayslip says:

    Welbeck definitely and maybe Wilshere. Not sure on the rest.

    1. Ozziegunner@Newcastle upon Hunter says:

      Debuchy has played well when given opportunities as well, considering his bad luck with injuries.

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