Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Shakhtar Donetsk vs Arsenal : Last Thoughts

Not for the first time in the last few seasons, we find ourselves in the middle of an injury crisis for the game against Shakhtar Donetsk tonight. With Cesc, Song, Diaby and Denilson all missing through injury, we are looking a bit stretched in midfield. Song and Denilson might make it if the game was an important league match but this game although significant, would not be the end of the world should we lose. Of course we would want to maintain our winning streak but not at the expense of players making their injury worst.
However I think this season our squad have shown that even with the players out, we have enough depth in the squad to maintain the kind of quality in the team that we are accustomed to. Tonight’s midfield trio is likely to be Eastmond, Wilshere and Rosicky. Although Eastmond is a young, he has already been blooded last year in both league and champions’ league matches. He had shown the potential of being a star in the future and this would be a good challenge for him to rise up to. More important, we have the return of Wilshere to look forward to and minimize the impact of not having Cesc in the squad. Wilshere, who just signed a new long term contract with the club, is definitely a god-send. He has been ever present for the team until the red card against Birmingham. He will be crucial to our chances of victory against a Shakhtar side that has not lost at home for some time.

With November being a very hectic month with 7 more matches to complete after this, the Gunners would really make it easy for themselves if they can win this match and qualify for the second round. Shakhtar would not just rolled over and play dead like they did at the Emirates but I am confident the team has what it takes to do the job in Ukraine.

Probable starting line for the Gunners : Fabianski, Sagna, Squillaci, Koscielny, Clichy, Eastmond, WIlshere, Rosicky, Walcott, Nasri, Bendtner.

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