Sunday, April 18, 2010

My Arsenal Dream Team

Alright, I've never done this kind of footie talk before, I just feel like it today...

As you all know, I'm a huge Arsenal fan for.. more than 10 years I think... I was there when Emmanuel Petit and Marc Overmars were Arsenal star players...

Throughout the years, I recognize the fact that, we should know better than to judge a certain Mr Wenger... and time has proven me right over and over again... majority of the footie geeks tend to magnify 'disasters' such as: the Gunners have gone 5 seasons without trophies... For me, I prefer to look at it in this angle: the Gunners own the most magnificent football stadium in the whole of UK, is the only club in the Top Four that is not some rich people's plaything, delivered an Invincible season, keeps producing entertaining football, and still consistently making it into the Champions League on a limited budget...

So no... I have not been to concerned about the lack of expensive signings over the past half of a decade...

Only thing is, with Mr Wenger's hinting that he might be spending some serious money on the playing staff this coming summer, I can't help but feel excited as well... I know very well not to question Mr Wenger's judgement, but I can't help but have an idea of my own on who I'd like to see at training at the London Colney ground next season... below are the signings I envision...

Goalkeeper:
1. Antii Niemi - I've always liked Niemi, in fact I hoped he joined Arsenal last time but then he joined Southampton. It would be good for him to keep Almunia on his toes while Fabianski and Vito Mannone could learn a thing or two from the experienced shot stopper. And he'd be a free transfer...

Defence:
I don't have any preference here.. or rather, I don't know what kind of addition can be added here. Personally, I think the starting back four is kind of good enough... Gallas/Vermaelen should be a good partnership, with Clichy and Sagna/Eboue flanking... Sol Campbell looks like he's got a couple of years of football left in him, he, Silvestre should provide good backup, and with Mr Gibbs coming through, I think we're good...

Midfield:
2. Ashley Young - I think Arsenal is long overdue of a real winger. True, there's a lot of talented midfielders within the Gunners ranks, but none of them are natural wide men. And Arsenal's period of success was when with strong wingers in them: Overmars, Pires, Ljungberg. Ashley Young would bring a new dimension to Arsenal's attack, and his English (good for fulfilling the locals quota). And, sorry Villa fans, but I think Young has progressed as far as he can with Villa... he needs a new challenge...

3. Papa Bouba Diop - Same case with Niemi, I liked him long ago and thought he would be the ideal replacement for Vieira, similar build and similarly tough tackling. He'd be on a cheap as well, and he could provide more backbone to the midfield for a couple of years until Abou Diaby comes off age...

I also think Arsenal's midfield are overcrowded. While it could be an envy of other teams to have Fabregas, Arshavin, Nasri, Rosicky, Walcott, and to a certain extent Aaron Ramsey and Denilson together in the team, it could also be a problem when all of them are fit... and to have Abou Diaby and Alex Song fighting for the same position when they are both similarly young... if it were up to me, Rosicky/Nasri could go, and Alex Song should go... for the better of themselves too...

4. Forward:
It seems like it is inevitable Marouane Chamakh is going to join in the summer. Honestly, I've never heard of him before Arsenal's reported interest in him (forgive me, I don't follow the French league). I don't know anything about his abilities, so no comments... I'd like to however, see Walcott moved back to the striker position that he so prefers. When I first saw him play, I really feel that he is more suitable being a Thierry Henry than a winger... He just needs to learn much more quickly, and he needs to play in his proper place to learn...

So my dream team line up would be a 4-4-2:
GK: Almunia/Niemi
LB: Clichy
RB: Sagna
CB: Gallas
CB: Vermaelen
LW: Arshavin
RW: Ashley Young
CM: Bouba Diop
CM: Fabregas
ST: van Persie
ST: Walcott

We could go at the enemy on all sides: Clichy and Sagna flanking Arshavin and Ashley Young, Fabregas to orchestrate things down the middle or having a go himself, and if van Persie and Walcott could develop to the class of Bergkamp and Henry...

Mouth watering... mouth watering...

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