May 25, 2015

Who Can Arsenal Afford To Lose This Summer?

By Michael Clements

A lovely finish to the Premiership season, and some really positive comebacks for a couple of players who have been unlucky with fitness this season. Seemingly a perfect preparation for our Cup Final this coming weekend.

Walcott's hat trick was superb, and at one point he looked as if he could have added a couple more to his tally. Wilshere's drive, determination and sublime goal was more than encouraging considering the slack the lad has been getting this season. However, there are still so many questions to ask. How about we start with the Manager's starting eleven selection.

Mertesacker and Koscielny both maybe needed a rest, but considering the BFG sat against Everton, it was the Frenchman who got a well deserved break this time around. Paulista had little to nothing to do, but his earlier performances have already given us a sense of calm when he holds that back line.

For the most part the team looked the same as it has the last few weeks, but there were two major changes that peaked both interest and unrest amongst Arsenal fans. Seeing Walcott start up front had many questioning the boss's decision making, but I think we can all agree that Olivier Giroud needed a rest, especially with a Cup Final just a few days away. Wilshere taking Ramsey's spot was perhaps an indication of Wengers future intentions with this team. Ramsey has been good this season, at times very good, but not great. The Welshman is one of my favorites in Red & White, but there's always the question of 'what if?' with Wilshere. Sure, he's failed to produce this season with his inconsistent healthy spurts in the team, but he's always shown that desire and you'd be mad not to wonder what a long stretch in the first team could do for the boy. 

Two English boys scoring four goals was pretty special, and while these are really positive signs for the team, I can't pretend that I'm not convinced this was an attempt to maybe put Theo in the shop window a bit. He's a player that, if kept in the squad could be very useful to this team, but that's not ever going to be good enough for Walcott. His ambitions perhaps exceed his ability, but you can't fault the man for having a go. I see Theo as a phenomenal player for a team fighting for Europe. If those are our aspirations going forward, then he's our guy, but if Arsenal Football Club are going to forge a fight for the Premier League title, then we had better look to improve on what we have. 
And by the way, Raheem Sterling is not that player either.

When it comes to Jack Wilshere, maybe it's his Arsenal background that keeps us hanging on to hope. I think it's got more to do with the talent he's shown in the past, but more importantly the blood he would shed for this club. Once again, I must preface all this with 'if he can stay healthy', but I truly believe he's got a place in this team. He can be the player who shows others why it's a privilege to play for this club. Just as Tony Adams, Ray Parlour, Keown, Bould etc all did when they were in the team. Yes, they all had ability, but the thing that set those particular players aside form the rest is the fact that they were playing their hearts out for The Arsenal. 

He's not the only one in this team that would fight for this team, in fact it's been a while since we had so many players that I feel would fight this hard for the famous cannon on their chests. But we'd be stupid to let a lad with such passion and potential slip through our fingers without affording him the real chance to prove himself in the Arsenal colours. He's 23 years old. Think about that for a second. Most players don't even begin to show their true potential until they're older than that. I think Jack is worth waiting for. 

Will both Theo and Jack start for the FA Cup Final this weekend? Probably not, but I can almost guarantee one of them will. Come on boys!

Up The Arsenal!