Per Mertesacker says that the options available to Arsene Wenger mean the manager will have some difficult decisions to make as the season goes on.
Arsenal won the Community Shield yesterday without Alexis Sanchez, Tomas Rosicky, Calum Chambers, David Ospina, Jack Wilshere, Mathieu Flamini or Danny Welbeck in the squad; while players like Mathieu Debuchy and Gabriel didn’t even get off the bench.
It means that there’s a depth of squad that hasn’t been there in seasons past, something the BFG says will cause the manager headaches.
“You can see we have a great squad, a deep squad,” he said. “That means there will be some difficult questions for the manager to answer and for the team, how we can cope with the difficulties.
“There will be disappointment in the squad. At the moment it is easier to handle in pre-season because everyone gets his games but once it is into the season, everyone wants to play in their own position.”
Nevertheless, it’s a very healthy situation for the club to be in. It’s much better to have competition for places than having to scrape the barrel to find someone to pull on the shirt.
The Arsenal vice-captain now wants the team to continue the momentum they’ve built up during pre-season into the new campaign.
“We have good form, can we keep that and start well is the key. We are confident, we have a great winning streak from Asia, the Emirates Cup and Wembley.
“We have to step up and do more than last season, so that is the question for us. We asked the question to ourselves and you could see we really want to compete and do the next step.”