Wenger reveals latest injury news and Oxlade-Chamberlain absence

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Arsene Wenger has revealed the latest team news ahead of tomorrow night’s Premier League encounter with Swansea.

Arsenal are looking to bounce back after that disheartening Old Trafford defeat, and there are no new problems since the game on Sunday. There are one or two issues with ‘muscular tightness’, but nobody available then is a doubt for tomorrow.

He has also confirmed that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be sidelined for 6-8 weeks.

The midfielder suffered a knee injury in a clash with Javier Mascherano during the 2-0 defeat against Barcelona, eventually being substituted after half time.

It’s a real blow for the England international who now faces a race against time to be fit for Euro 2016, but good news in that he won’t require surgery to fix the problem.

Wenger also hinted he’d be making some changes to the team for the Swansea game, hinting that Danny Welbeck could make way as he’s concerned about overplaying him after such a long injury absence.

That would probably mean a recall for Olivier Giroud ahead of Theo Walcott – about whom the Arsenal manager refused to comment today – and possibly Joel Campbell on the right side.

Thanks to @JamesOlley for the Ox question.

62 COMMENTS

  1. Win against Swansea and hope West Ham do us a favor, we could be right back in the mix come the weekend!

    So difficult to be motivated after such a disappointment at OT.
    Gotta turn things around soon, and stick together until the end of the season!

    The HATE can WAIT for a few more weeks, bring it on…

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    • I usually blame Arsene for the failure of the team, but this time I would blame the players. Fuck it, no matter how bad the manager is, those players must have some fucking pride in wanting those medals around their neck.

      We are not talking about youngesters here, we are talking about players played in major finals. Cech, BFG, Ozil and Alexs should lead the way and mange the game themselves when things not working. Add fight into the team this fucking league is there for us to win.

      Apart from City, we should be going into any other game even with no manger and win it as we have better players. 10 out of 11 please.

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      • Slightly disagree it’s to easy to sit there and expect the star players to pull us through. We want an all round team effort no excuses or finger pointing. Nothing less might see us lift the title at the end of the season.

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        • Dare I say it… Sp*rs showed us what desire can do when tackling a staunch Swansea. They are unfortunately playing good football and could potentially take it out this year. Leicester look a little fatigued and yet they fought hard to beat Norwich. We played a lesser Man U and looked wanting. Yes they had a handful of key players – but what an opportunity to make a stand – send a message to all other teams that we are here to take the title.

          I truly believe that we still have an opportunity – we need other games to go our way – but we hve the ability and our players need to prove why they wear the Arsenal shirt.

          This is “as they say” our best opportunity. Let’s take it.

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      • Happy to agree with you on something mate. Wenger is a stubborn old crab and the players look like they need to grow a pair at times.

        To my mind a top level striker is going to be the difference between a good team and a top class team. Sometimes I feel that if I lost some weight I would also manage a few goals a season getting on the end of Ozil assists. Can’t hope but feel that we would have a 30+ goals per season striker with the chances we create.

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      • You’re right, Cygan. You can blame Wenger for picking Walcott, but you can only blame Walcott for being so fucking poor all the time, and not even trying.

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  2. So that’s Chamberlain’s season over..his career is on the ropes right now, no confidence, no end product and no sustainable fitness. Hodgson loves him though and he’ll go To the Euros as long as he isn’t on crutches. That will be good for his confidence but I’m starting to think this is Theo mark 2 but with less goals..

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    • Cech, Bellerin, Monreal, Gabriel, Chambers, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Coquelin, Cazorla, Wilshere, Ramsey, Ozil, Elneny, Alexis, Campbell and Welbeck are the only players I would retain from this group (talking about senior players).
      Flamini, Rosicky, Arteta (contracts ending anyway), Walcott, Ox and Giroud, I would let them go. None from that bunch will get better any time soon; the worst is Walcott – a lost cause. They are not our future.
      Get better players to replace them and we will be a force to reckon with.
      Enough of putting faith on mid-table cadre players in the hope they become world beaters someday.

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      • I agree with a lot of what you say, particularly due to the age of some of our players, but I still Ox is worth holding onto for at least another season. Giroud’s age suggests he may be moving on before too long, but Theo seems to have chained himself to the foundations because his Arsenal career never seems in doubt.

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      • Manny, I agree with most of your list, other than keep Giroud but get in another CF, winger clinical shooter and sell Ramsey, the entire team has more cohesion and plays better when he is not on the pitch.

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      • Manny, I agree with your lists but with two exceptions, Giroud to stay with another new striker, Ramsey to go. He disrupts the team who play better without him. Too many careless mistakes he slows the game down, no spacial awareness poor technique.

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        • I feel Ramsey is worth keeping. The trouble is where he is playing. The absence of Cazorla has hit Ramsey more than others (may be Alexis and Walcott also).
          Ramsey finds it difficult when the game is in front of him. But if you free him, he will get you goals.

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          • I kind of feel like it’s worth a start with Ramsey back on the right. He can run up and down all day out there, get on something from Ozil, and he’s combined pretty well with Hector and Ozil in the past. It leaves Joel out still unless Alexis is one of those with tight muscles.

            The way it looks to me, with Ozil rightly cemented as our attacking mid Ramsey’s style leaves Coq solo and our midfield uncontrolled. Put him on the right and we’ve suddenly got huge midfield overload.

            Coq and Elneny in the middle, one disruptor, one more positionally disciplined holding mid. Elneny will have to turn and pass it forward a little more than against Man U though. I wonder why we’ve not seen that? Perhaps they’re not mixing duties well in practice, or Wenger is just more concerned with the attacking power.

            But if we have no midfield control and the whole team is worried about that our attacking 4-5 can’t play as confidently without penalty.

            Ok, that’s my horribly unqualified opinion.

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        • There is no reason why Ramsey would not make a good squad player until he proves otherwise… we have really good players but too many are shoe-ins week in and out, when they should be squad players. The keeper, fullbacks, Cazorla and Ozil would be my definite starters. Cazorla and Ozil are the only attacking players we have who can play one touch and play with any kind of variety. The other one is Wilshere.

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      • A little harsh on Giroud, Ox and Rozza. I really want to see Rosicky finish his career at Arsenal. Giroud can be frustrating sometimes but he still offers a lot up front (Hold up play, flicks, aerial prowess etc.). As for Ox, I can see still see a lot of quality in him but he just needs confidence and consistency. I mean look at Joel Campbell (I’m wondering why he has not played much lately) hopefully Ox can do the same. But at the age of 22, it would be unfair to rule him off. He just needs one good season without injuries and his career would take off I’m sure.

        As for Theo, he should leave. He did FUCK ALL alright in the game against Man U. Some of our bad performances this season can be attributed to him. He carries no pride whatsoever when he puts on the Arsenal shirt. Remember earlier this season in the home fixture against Man United, where he was chasing everyone down and had a great game at the end? We need more of that every time we play him. It’s almost like he doesn’t even put in the effort and he was FUCKING nowhere to be seen on Sunday. It’s frustrating because we know what he CAN do and we’ve SEEN him to it. I expect a lot from a player who sits on £110,000 every week and he should be ashamed of himself. We have to sell him in the summer and we need to look for a possible replacement from now.

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    • All Ox needs to do for the next 2 months is keep his chin up. Then, when he finally returns to the field, maybe he’ll get his head up too.

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  3. Like Ox, but won’t miss him… Arsenal has got to get players with BRAIN ! Unfortunately Ox has got none. Neither has Alexis…

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    • Clearly Alexis has no brain because he came to Arsenal, I mean who who would come to such a rubbish club eh ?

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  4. if we want to win the league we have to win next two match at first this week.And then have to go on a winning run till the end of a season. i have always admired wenger for what he has done to the club but if he cant help us win the league this year, he has to resign !

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  5. I know it’s not ideal but I wonder has any thought been put into playing a wildcard up front. Giroud and Walcott don’t look like scoring and sometimes the freshness of youth can be refreshing as we found out Sunday. Akpom would be ideal but unfortunately he’s out on loan.

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    • You want a wild card? How about Sanchez up front?
      His game from the left has become too predictable, and every opposition RB has studied; they all know he will cut in.

      Sanchez has always been better centrally and his best forms for us were in central positions. Plus he always wants to cut in to be central. So time to retry him as a striker.

      At worst, there is no way he can do worse than Theo.

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      • I don’t think his best form was as a striker. He only played a handful of games to my recollection. It might be a dull argument but he is too short to be the sole striker upfront. I agree with you thought, literally anything is better than what Walcott showed on Sunday. But Sanchez’s form has dropped by equal measures so I am really reserved on counting on him in any way at the moment.

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    • Wildcard? I’d play Theo up front. The guy has been slated for the last couple days, and will be desperate to stick it to the critics. Play him up front, where he hasn’t played for several games, and if nothing comes of it, sub him at 60 minutes. The problem on Sunday was at the back and in midfield. We scored 2 goals at OT, after all.

      In general, I prefer Giroud up front regardless of the situation, but Wenger might just get a reaction by slotting Theo up there tomorrow.

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      • Theo is never desperate for anything except a new contract. After his last disgraceful display he doesn’t even deserve to be on the bench. To reward that with a start in his favoured position would be disrespectful to the players who were actually trying in that game. Wenger would certainly get a reaction from me if he did anything that idiotic!

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  6. I don’t think we have the mentality to be champions. The way Arsene talks after losses/draws away at difficult grounds, saying things like “Let’s not forget, this is a difficult place to come”, is not what a manager of a team wanting to be champions should be thinking.

    Champions want to win every single game, because you know what? If you want to be champions, you want to show that, by definition, you are better than every team in the league, and you should aim to go to every ground and win. You should be distraught if you don’t and not think that it’s okay because other teams will struggle there too.

    We have this “comforting” mentality after poor away results that it’s okay to do poorly at that ground. It’s not good enough.

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    • Agreed. Agreed. Agreed.

      Wenger clearly looks at games and decides what’s acceptable, including losing some.

      He has given up on his beautiful football philosophy and has become the arch-pragmatist and it is dull to watch and unsuccessful. What manager thinks it’s ok to have Ozil and Flamini in the same team? No other team has such a gap between his best and worst players.

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  7. Hopefully Wenger’s reluctance to talk about Theo is only because he is equally frustrated at him as us fans. It’s a long shot. But I hope Wenger can talk some of his players into putting in a shift. The weekend took everything outta me..

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  8. I’m still emotionally drained after Saturday. I just hope we aren’t as lethargic this time. I think we’re better chasers than leaders when it comes to the table. The only problem is we have 11 games to pip the spuds and Leicester to the finishing line. Sad times, sad times indeed.

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    • And I am sick to death of people that call aclaimed managers old fools.

      Honestly, why do you think you have the right to say these things? Because you gave a guarantee of anonimity on the internet?

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  9. You guys remember when Walcott was accused for not having a ‘footballing brain’?

    It really looks like fact now to be honest.

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    • It looked like a fact then too (think it was around 2010). But I think most of us assumed he would progress tactically as the years went by. The fact he hasn’t and yet has been offered markedly improved contract terms every couple of years since then (and considering all the technically superior players we’ve had in that time) borders on farcical. Hate to speak this negatively about one of our own players, but I’m with Arseblog on this one, apart from being enthusiastic about some of the moments he gave us as a teenager, I’ve just never been able to warm to Walcott.

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      • To add (my views are very important and require two comments), more worryingly than just not being able to warm to him, I’ve never been optimistic enough in his footballing ability to imagine him as a key figure in a title race- he’d provide the occasional goal or assist and show signs of going on a run, but as someone to get us over the line, no chance. The “luxury footballer” tag annoyed the crap out of me when people tried to apply it to Ozil, but I struggle to think of a player in our squad more befitting of that than Walcott.

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  10. Staying up until 4 am every weekend, just to watch them play, then we have to deal with them not bothering to turn up for big games.

    We always have to rely on others fucking up. Even when we got too 4 for those years it was because Spurs and Liverpool etc would fuck up. We can never do anything ourselves.

    This season is the same. Have to rely on Leicester.. FUCKING LEICESTER to drop points so we can compete for the title. I’m so done lol

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    • Well, Leicester just dropped points at home today. Perhaps you should delay giving up on Arsenal until we’re actually mathematically eliminated from winning the league.

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      • Haha i would never really give up on them. I’ll do the same tomorrow morning, and then Saturday night, ill be up watching the games. But it’s just frustrating haha.

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  11. Can someone elaborate on the Walcott situation – “the Arsenal manager refused to comment today”? What was asked about him?

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    • He was asked to comment on Theo’s performance, and Wenger, as usual, refused saying everyone had a difficult game. But here’s what I don’t get. He says he does not want to go into individual assessments but had no problem talking about Sanchez’s fighting spirit and ‘better’ second half. Why not just say Theo had a bad game?

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      • The individual assessments he doesn’t like to go into are the negative ones. I’m guessing it does mean there’s a bit of disappointment there. It’s a repeated Wengerism.

        What actually surprised me was his willingness to call out Gabriel’s english skills. He has more than usual over the last season or two had a few critical public comments about players.

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    • That’s assuming he doesn’t have the Arsenal customary set back leading to an operation and out for 6-8 months!

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    • We’ve been over it a thousand times, but fuck it, no other absence this year has been felt more strongly than Santi. There isn’t anyone in the league is capable of doing what he does in the deep lying midfield role. Just a few months back we actually used to control games with him there. Sad to see how far our performances have regressed since- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M1sHk21l7fQ

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  12. It is a massive blow for Chamberlin after just having started to come to form. The injury bug sure has hit our British core over the last few years with Wilshere constantly out, Welbeck out almost a year, Chamberlin having his issues, Walcott had the torn ACL and some other muscular things and of course Jenkinson got hurt not even playing for us. Then you have Gibbs who was always injured when he played and I guess the only way to keep him healthy is to not play him much. Chambers of course is the exception, but he is still young.

    I really hope Wenger will look to make some changes this Summer, things need to be shaken up a bit. You see it from so many other teams in football and across all sports (especially in the US), nobody ever stands pat and doesn’t look to freshen up things and make improvements. All of our rivals are going to be spending big this Summer and all have made good money selling players that they then reinvest. No reason we can’t do the same with a few players that have some value now, but are not doing it for us (like Walcott).

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  13. As much as it is annoying to admit. And I know Blogs and Gunnerblog thought it didn’t matter, maybe the ‘celebrations’ after the Citeh win at Xmas were silly. Maybe footballers are simpletons. Maybe players who shout and yell do so because most teams don’t pick up the message otherwise. And getting excited too early in the season means you are not as focussed for the next match… what was that match again?

    Wenger refuses to coach his team within an inch of it’s life like Pochettino, there is no philosophy like his sides until the end of ‘project youth’ and he doesn’t buy the best players available like City. So where these players’ instructions and focus should be is a wide, yawning chasm of nothingness. Ask these players what they are doing – and I am not sure any would be able to answer.

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  14. Ox is worth holding on. He has a potentially better combination of dribbling skill and pace than Walcott.

    Campbell uses the ball and protects it well. He can also develop further.

    Alexis is at moment untouchable.

    The only remaining winger/striker is Walcott.

    He needs to get back to his best or Wenger should consider selling him on as his pace will drop with age and if he isn’t showing sufficient hunger we have plenty waiting on the wings in Jeff, Iwobi, Gnabry, Akpom etc.

    We need IMO a more nuanced and tricky player out wide.

    We have also been missing a tall combative player like Diaby (minus injury prone) who has wicked dribbling skills.

    Jack provides some fetch and carry as does Santi but the combination of height and power is missing.

    COntrary to some fabled opinion, I don’t see Elneny as even an upgrade to Flamini whom along with Ramsey found some equilibrium and kept decent clean sheets for us against Sotke Soton and Bournemouth not to mention held firm against City and Olmpiakos.

    You can see the myth being busted in Coquelin being an entire complete package. Coqzorla is only more effective in that Santi is in part as much an equal part of the partnership now missing. In absence, Rammini found a good balance at least defensively if not in more limited ability. But without Santi and with Coquelin paired with Ramsey, I see little difference to Rammini if not even less understanding and more dissconnection.

    Understanding is key. Again there were facile calls for Per to be replaced by Gabriel because the former lacked ‘apace’. Better positioning than pace but lack of understanding. And you cannot immediately form a partnership with Koscielny that Per has done without some prior experience.

    Clearly Per and Flamini are not the weakest links in the squad even if some lesser minds seem to be convinced by the media that they are.

    We have more inherent weaknesses that need to be addressed.

    I for one never understood the ranting on Flamini’s pointing. He was giving sensible directions for space he could not cover without detriment to the player he was marking. That direction was entirely lacking against United and effectively and amply demonstrated by the third goal by Herrera.

    Clearly many people are not seeing the picture clearly and have it formed by their own inherent bias.

    I’m not saying Per and Flamini are by far without fault but when you have calls for Elneny to start over Flamini at all cost, you wonder. Elneny has yet to be proven and is not yet physically robust enough in midfield. Nor has his contribution against United been anymore incisive with mainly back passes and a couple of rash untimely challenge which had it been Flamini many would be up in arms against.

    This just serves to illustrate the skewered view many people hold on certain players who are better than made out to be.

    Simply put, you need a degree of understanding between players which is why Leicester with a stable (and limited) selection has been so terribly effective (of course not hampered by injury which we often are)

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    • santori .well analysed about flamini and mertesacker .i have been sticking up for them for weeks .truth mate is people don’t analyse performances they watch with their own prejudice and blinkered views.i was amazed 65 per cent in a poll viewed kos gabriel our best central defence.yet manu bournemouth and burnley as a pair they were awful.people are now looking for cazorla as needed back i like him but a fit wilshire for his drive leadership and ability are whats needed.flamini did a good job for us yet week after week slagged off by pundits and fans alike.i see mertesackers ramseys and flaminis faults but overall they do a good job though they aren’t the greatest.

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    • Ends in a draw w/ Pulis’ latest mission to just beat the drop..
      Tomorrow’s going to be an important day at the top end of the table.

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    • Piece of cake. We beat Swansea 3-0, West Ham beat Spurms 3-0. Then on the weekend we beat Spurms 3-0. That puts us three points ahead of them, and one goal better on GD. Meanwhile, Leicester get beaten 3-0 at Watford on Saturday. That puts us on top of the table, tied on points with Leicester but with a +6 GD on them.

      There, that was easy. I’m going to pop off to the store and buy this week’s winning lottery ticket now.

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