Posts Tagged ‘Steve Bould’


…exciting times ahead at The Emirates?

Seven years of fruitful harvest, seven seasons of famine. Does the biblical story relate to a certain North London club? I think so! The Gunners sudden change in status from genuine title contenders to pretenders in the last few years has been surprising.  Arsenal has become a perpetual selling club losing their key players to local and European rivals.

Wenger and the board have continued to convince their fans that the club is headed in the right direction financially but for the suffering supporters, they have continued to endure taunts from fans in West London, Liverpool and Manchester.

Every season starts with huge optimism and expectation but as the season winds down, it seem to be the same old story of misery.

Perhaps 2012/13 season may be different, despite losing former Captain Robin Van Persie and influential midfield man Alex Song to Manchester United and Barcelona respectively, Arsenal have made a good start to the season with one win and two draws.

Five out of a possible nine points is a good start? Yes, considering how they kicked off last season. Their impressive victory over Liverpool gives room for optimism and how they have shut out their opponents from scoring in 270 minutes of play.

I have picked three key men who I feel will be crucial to the Gunners success this season.


… marshaling the defence from the dugout

The former Stoke City, Arsenal and Sunderland defender had an illustrious playing career of 20 years has been promoted to the role of assistant manager at the club and has been saddled with the responsible of ensuring the back line is much tighter than it was before. Three games played, no goals conceded despite the absence of Koscienly and Sagna and maybe Andre Santos. The Gunners back four have stifled opponents, shielded their goal and are well coordinated when set pieces are whipped in. It is well documented fact that as long as your opponent don’t score, they are not likely to win. Scoring has never been a problem at the North London club with Professor Wenger’s philosophy and brand of football.

Steve’s role is keeping the defense performance top-notch. Time will tell if the early praises are not too premature.


..can he stay fit?

Has the hour cometh for the man dubbed the new Patrick Vieira to finally lay claim to that huge comparison? Since his arrival at the club, only a few which includes Arsene Wenger have believed in the French man. A broken ankle stalled his progress as a youngster upon his arrival from France, his fitness has seen been a concern for his followers coupled with his indifferent form. The elusive midfielder has started the season well with a man of the match performance against Liverpool where he pulled the strings effectively. Such performance highlights the qualities seen in him when Wenger sanctioned his move from Auxerre to North London in the January 2006.

If he stays fit and can keep his level of performance high, he is a player who can lift his team above many on his day. I am of the opinion that Diaby’s performance for the Gunners is vital to their campaign this time around.


…pulling all the strings in midfield

Once again, Arsene Wenger has shown us that he is still a master at wheeling and dealing. The capture of Santi Cazorla from Malaga is probably the best piece of business in terms of incoming player  the willy old French man has done most recently. The diminutive Spanish winger/playmaker is the closest thing to Andres Iniesta on the football pitch. Cazorla offers both feet and subtle skills, excellent crosses, powerful shot and he’s got to be the new jewel in the crown for the Gunners.

His link up plays with Diaby in the middle of the park shows a player who is ready to take up responsibility. Oliver Giroud and Lukas Podolski need to make the appropriate runs for the Spanish international to find them on the field – an example was Podolski’s first goal for Arsenal against Liverpool. He also adds his own fair share of goals from direct free-kicks and log range shots. The 5ft 6” man early season impression is leaving the Gunners excited about the prospect of a season deemed to be another long one after the exit of their erstwhile captain and talisman.

The season is just getting under way but these three men will need to play their significant roles to perfection if the Gunners will be celebrating for the first time at the Emirates.

I reckon you agree or disagree. You can have your say………