Arsenal FC: An Optimistic Robin Van Persie and a Shrewsbury Preview

Toni Okike@@enigma106Senior Analyst IISeptember 20, 2011

BLACKBURN, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 17:  l-r Robin Van Persie, Aaron Ramsey and Mikel Arteta of Arsenal show their dissapointment after the fourth goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Blackburn Rovers and Arsenal at Ewood Park on September 17, 2011 in Blackburn, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

The injuries sustained by Arsenal from the defeat in Ewood Park are healing slowly, but the scars will be with the club all season long.

After playing for two football months with the Premier League and the Champions League, a new competition has entered the fray, the Carling Spoon.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger made a mockery of this competition seasons ago by fielding younglings irrespective of the team he was coming up against, but he saw the light and opened his eyes last season.

The competition almost yielded fruit for his side, but his players fell in the final hurdle.

The cock-up between Laurent Koscielny and Wojciech Szczesny can never be forgotten by any gooner for years to come.

Robin Van Persie is a player that was hot like supernova last season, but his form hasn’t been too scintillating this campaign. But he has done well to add two goals to his name.

He was on the profligate side when Arsenal played Blackburn, but as the No. 1 citizen of the club, his commitment cannot be questioned.

He has told the media vultures that he’s still positive despite Arsenal's poor start to the season.

“There is lots of time [left this season], but at some point you need to pick yourself up and prove what you are capable of," he said.

“We are not doing that at the moment and are not consistent enough.”

He continued, “It just frustrates me, and it is happening too often. Every time we start positively we just keep making the same mistakes and that is surprising.”

“It’s very important [to get back on track]. Even before the game on Saturday I said to the boys, ‘today is a big, big day’. We have to get back-to-back wins, and we just cannot do that at the moment. That is our aim for the next couple of games, we have to win them after each other.”

“We just need a couple of good weeks in the Premier League where we get a lot of points, and hopefully we can start next week against Bolton.

Arsenal’s talisman and star player has done his bit for the side, but it's bad to see how the defense crumbled against Blackburn.

Van Persie has also told the media that he’s surprised by Arsenal’s errors.

“It just frustrates me and it is happening too often," he said. "Every time we start positively we keep making the same mistakes and that is surprising.”

I’m pretty sure that van Persie isn’t the only person that’s perplexed and bewildered when it comes to Arsenal and its defensive issues.

He tweeted, "@Persie_Official: I’m surprised by my team’s errors."

I’m confident that he’ll get more retweets than the amount of times Messi checks his mirror to see if he has added another inch to his hobbit-like height.

He ended his comments by saying that there’s still plenty of time, and I’m in full support of that.

It’s true that it’s in the early days, and we should remember that we have played only five games in the Premier League and we have five more Champions League games to go, as well as the Carling Spoon and the FA Cup that will start in January.

Arsenal legend Ray Parlour has slammed the club’s defending following the fiasco at Blackburn, but it seems as if everybody’s cries for an injection in the coaching staff has fallen on deaf ears because Wenger has told the media that he’s keeping the faith with his current coaching staff.

So much has been said about those behind the scenes not doing their jobs well because these frailties are still shown on the pitch.

But I don’t think that sacking the back room staff that have been in the club for eons will change the situation.

Every finger should be pointed at the boss for his team selection and the players selected for not doing their jobs well.

However, Wenger has heaped praise on Arsenal supporters after they backed his team to the hilt at Ewood Park, and he has admitted that his new-look defense needs time to develop.

I know that everybody was expecting Per Mertesacker to make an instant impact but the center back has done very well in the games he has played so far.

He almost salvaged a point for Arsenal on Saturday with that mighty header that missed by a lick of paint.

Wenger has also stated that newbie Park Chu-Young will be valuable for Arsenal because of his versatility and he has also talked up the abilities of Ryo Miyaichi.

Arsenal has a Carling Spoon match tonight against npower League Two minnow Shrewsbury, and Wenger has promised that his youngsters will be on song tonight.

And that he’ll create the perfect blend between youth and experience.

The only thing I know about Shrewsbury is that they are a npower League Two outfit that play their home games in Greenhous Meadow, a 10,000 all-seater stadium in England.

The other landmark I know about the club is that they were the English outfit that unleashed Man City’s Joe Hart to the world, and I’m pretty sure that he’ll keep tonight’s fixture in mind.

Judging from Arsenal’s scouting report on the team, they are a good footballing side and they have a striker called Marvin Morgan who has already netted seven times this season.

They also have good wingers but I don’t expect the team to drop and play dead at the Emirates.

In team news, Lukasz Fabianski will be given his first Arsenal start this season and I’m pretty sure that he’ll have a boring day at the office.

But you never can tell what this Arsenal side has up its sleeves.

Carl Jenkinson will be given a run-out at the right, while Kieran Gibbs will strut his stuff on the left.

Wenger may want to rest his defensive pairing for the game against Bolton, so starts may be handed out to Ignasi Miquel and Johan Djourou.

Arsenal is lacking options in the middle of the park with endless injury worries, but there’s good news because Wilshere will be back soon.

I feel that Wenger will play Emmanuel Frimpong in the holding role while Aaron Ramsey and Yossi Benayoun will complete the triumvirate.

The attack will have an exciting outlook with Ryo Miyaichi showing off his Ryodinho skills on the left while the raw pace of the Chambered Ox will be unveiled for all to see.

Wenger will also hand out a debut to Korea Republic’s captain Park Chu-Young to lead the line.



Jenkinson – Djourou – Miquel – Gibbs

Frimpong – Benayoun – Ramsey

Chambered Ox – Park CY – Miyaichi


This is not Arsenal’s full strength XI, but it’s definitely good enough to smash in goals past a npower League Two side.

Enjoy the game wherever you are.

The quote of the day goes to ChiEbuka Nworah, who said, "If Arsenal continue to sink at this rate, they are bound to strike oil at some point in the near future.”

I don’t know if it was culled from his head or some article, but I would really love Arsenal to "strike oil."

I’m writing about the Abu Dhabi oil that struck Man City and PSG.

I just wonder when some oil-rich football crazy sheikh will give Stan Kroenke, Alisher Usmanov and the AST offers that they won’t be able to refuse.

Oh well.

It’s good to create fantasies in your head at times. 



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