Friday Pre(i)sser

Bit of a different format today, owing to the deluge of news that always happens on a Friday so let’s get stuck in, shall we?

Injury Update

Eduardo and Silvestre are both out for Saturday. Dudu is being rumored to be out for the rest of the season with his  groin strain while Silvestre will be a late test for Tuesday. I had wondered why Eduardo was such a late sub on Wednesday and I think now it’s clear: he’s never really been fully fit since ‘recovering’ from Martin Taylor’s horrific tackle. And that makes sense. He needs time to get the tendons and muscles back into shape. More rehab, more light practice, rest, recovery, etc. I don’t know a single Gunner who isn’t proud of the courage that Dudu has shown this year and would gladly wait to see him fully fit at the start of next year. Get better Eduardo, we’ll wait.

Robin van Persie is another who’s going to have a late fitness test to see if he can play on Tuesday.  Either way, I doubt he’ll start and instead will need to reprise the super-sub role he played against Cardiff. I know, Man U are not Cardiff, but I mean get a goal, like he did against Cardiff.

Gallas and Rosicky remain out for the season, and the boss is now saying Clichy will be out for three weeks as well. That basically means that Arsenal are without Eduardo, Clichy, Gallas, and Rosicky for the rest of the season.

Fabregate

Cesc has spoken out about the FA charges against him saying that if he should be suspended then 8 others who came on the pitch should be similarly suspended. The FA responded by basically saying, it’s not that you came on the pitch it’s how you acted.

With that said, I am now confident that Fabregas will get a 3 match ban here, the same amount that Martin Taylor got for intentionally breaking Eduardo’s leg.

Because those two things are equivalent.

Maybe next time he should come out and break a player’s leg. At least then he’d deserve the ban.

Transfer News? In April?

The papers are all reporting that Wenger will sell Adebayor and buy Roque Santa Cruz.  The selling point in this story?

Wenger has been an admirer of the 27-year-old for some time. He had Santa Cruz scouted and is particularly impressed by the player’s work-rate after studying his ProZone statistics.

Well, Wenger is a lover of hard work, how do you think Bendtner keeps getting a shot?

Speak of the Devil

Bendtner is featured in this week’s free video on the dot com. A word of warning: clicking that link caused my browser (Firefox) to crash. Actually, that’s about what I’d expect, even Bendtner’s videos suck.

Almunia for England

And finally, the big story of the day is that Fabio Capello would not rule out Almunia should he get an English passport when he becomes eligible in July.  Legally and morally, I don’t see how he could exclude him.

First off, my name is Tim. I’m an American, and I’m a Gooner. I’ve been a Gooner now for 10 years. I’ve seen matches at Highbury and the Emirates and I fly every year to see my beloved Arsenal. I also support France in world competitions, rather than the U.S. team, because, well, because I want to. And so I think I have a bit of a unique perspective on this Almunia situation.

Whether Almunia wants to become an English citizen or not is about choices and not about birthplace. That’s just the way the world is today. The old days of nationalism are dying slowly and people now have more freedom than ever before to choose the country they want to naturalize in. Personally, I’d like to see it be even more open. I have never understood why capital could move freely from one country to another but people were restrained by quaint old notions of borders. So, if Almunia wants to become an English citizen and renounce his eligibility to play for Spain, knowing the stick he’s going to get from xenophobes and nationalists, then I say more power to him.

Moreover, the old notions of “identity” that surrounded certain things, like being a Gooner meant that you were probably from North London, have changed radically as well. Now, you have millions of Americans, Indians, Chinese, Africans, and Spanish devoted to following English teams and thus the identity of English clubs are no longer associated with place. When you have millions of Africans wearing Liverpool shirts and identifying with Steven Gerrard it both takes a bit away from that old identity as “scouser” and adds something new to their identity. Again, you can wring your hands about this, you can jump on the Platini xenophobe bandwagon, and you can scream about how your identity is being taken over by Yanks and the Africans. But unless you are willing to stop broadcasting English games around the globe and shrink the English game back into something provincial and small (something that will never win a world championship) then you’re going to have to deal with the fact that football is a global sport with a global following. And that means that clubs now have global identities. And more radically, that national teams now have global identities.

Other countries have already accepted this change and I have no doubt that Croatian fans love their Brazilian born striker.  It’s time for England to let go of the old, small way of looking at football and join the modern world. And time for fans to embrace their future England Number 1; Manuel Almunia.

Tomorrow’s Match

Right, so that’s it for today. Tomorrow’s match kicks off at 7am (PST) is being broadcast on FSC. I’ll try to do a quick update before kickoff and then do a liveblog of the match. If you’re into that sort of thing, join us here at about 6:30.

See you then!

18 Comments on Friday Pre(i)sser

  1. I totally agree with what you said about Almunia and globalization of football. Seems to me there is a double standard here. Its okay to take money from foreigners by selling them tv rights and t-shirts but its not okay to let them play in the national team when one has become a naturalized citizen through perfectly legal means. This false sense of nationalism is, at best, laughable. The guardian had a poll on what people think on this – whether Almunia should be allowed in the national team – and 87% said no!! That is just shocking and if I would be a quite embarrassed if I was English.

  2. Oh please not Santa Cruz. He had a freak season and that’s about it. He was never that good at Bayern and was benched for a reason. His Indian Summer has been over and for the kind of money Milan can spend we could buy someone much better suited to the Arsenal way – perhaps Benzema or even be bold enough for Eto’o but really we’re still short at the back and there still a bit of softness in the middle of the pitch, even with Song’s development, youth is still inconsistent.

  3. Santa Cruz, I agree a one season wonder.

    Check out Negredo at Almeria, not 24 until August, tallish 6’1″ 19 goals in 30 games.

  4. agreed, viva, that’s a much likelier choice for Wenger.

    also, Andy, please don’t ever show that strip around here ever again.

    Green?

    GREEN???

    WTF?

  5. Fark, I just did a bunch of looking around and that kit is looking like it might be the real deal. Though it could just as easily be an all blue kit.

    Here’s the thing: I wish they would stoop fucking with the kits. White? Only cunts wear white. Blue? Ok, I remember the blue kits, that was the invincible’s away strip, but they were ugly, only cunts wear blue. And now, GREEN? Even cunts don’t wear green.

    Red and white for home, yellow and blue for away.

    I know they want to sell strips and all but why is this so hard?

  6. No, please not Santa Cruz. A one season wonder who is perpetually injured and lacks chutzpah.

    Jamaican by birth, naturalized “Yankee” and a Brazilian football devotee.

    The US team which beat England 1-0 in 1960, did not have one player born in the US.

    Globalization is here to stay, like it or not.

    @Tim, my Firefox also crashed watching the NB video.

    Apparently, Merida will get a start tomorrow.

  7. Green kits remind me of puke. UGH

    Believe it or not, one of the Asian sites is already selling the green kit LOL

  8. They need to hire me, Caribkid, to make sure their site is compatible with Firefox. 🙂

    Are you using noscript and adblockplus?

    I suspect that they are actually the culprits here.

  9. If I got nervous everytime I heard Arsenal’s name associated with some clown that I dont give two sh*ts about or didn’t like, I would be losing a lot of good years of my life. Yeah RSZ is just what we need – another half bit player who spends more time in the physio’s room than the field. However I wouldn’t worry about this too much. This is surely be one of the many rumors that we are all bound to hear as the summer transfer season starts heating up. Lets focus all our collective energy in beating the sh*t out of the mancs on Tusday.. OOOHHHMMM…..

  10. @Tim,

    I use neither of those 2. I use Ad-Aware.

    Funny, this is the second time I have had a crash on Arsenal.com while watching a video and can’t remember having any other Firefox crashes in recent history.

  11. On the bright side we can all take solace in the fact that David Bentley’s career is just going further down the drain. See what happens when you leave us.

    Edin Dzeko, Lorik Cana and Brede Hangeland for 2009!!

  12. You heard it here first: Mamadou Sakho, French, 19 years old, central defender, plays for Paris SG. First team at age 17. Captain last year at age 18. Captain of French U-21 national team. Now this is a signing that would do us a lot of good for many years.
    If we want a striker: No doubt we want Benzema.

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