Saturday, March 25, 2006

Pompey awaits!

On a ground where we usually do well, I wouldn't be surprised if a few gooners are still a bit nervous today. Pompey seem to be on a bit of a run at the moment - although hammering West Ham's reserves isn't that great an achievement. Mendes in particular has been really dangerous of late, and he certainly talks a good game here. I would be very surprised if he doesn't have at least 10 or 12 long range shots, possibly from his own goal line. I'm sure Jen's will be up to the challenge.

The team news for us is interesting. After a lot of debate this week on Arsenal sites as to whether he should play, Sol has not even made the squad. The injury news can be found here. I think Arsene's comments about the defence playing well are telling - he's not going to displace anyone immediately even if Sol is 100%. Reyes isn't back either, but i suspect that is a case of resting before the game on Tuesday. Indeed, while Arsene is right to say this game is as big as Juve, I think even he has, understandably, one eye on Tuesday night. So I expect the same team to play that hammered Charlton last week. Maybe RvP coming into contention, but i think he's now going to find it hard to break the Henry-Adey relationship. It's officially love between those two.

Fairly simple today - nothing less than a win will do. I expect Spurs and Blackburn to win, as they have fairly straightforward games against the Baggies and Sunderland respectively. It could be one of those weekends, like last Saturday, where even though we win, we won't actually make up that much ground. We shouldn't get discouraged though. We just need to stay in the running and then beat the Spuds at Highbury. As I've said before, we need to win every remaining game now, except, perhaps, the one at ManU which may be an ask too far. If we do that - 4th place is ours.

Actually quite a lot of interesting news about today. Arsene has been expressing his views on wages and diving. His tongue must have actually slighlty torn through his cheek when he made the diving comments. Wages - well, we all know they're paid too much, but it's not going to change is it? As long as the give their all every week, they're trying to justify their wads which is as much as we can ask. In the wages link there's also a cheeky jibe at Chelsea regarding the, basically, done-deal for Ballack. 'Blue suits him much better'. Subtle Arsene, subtle. More talks on the TH contract have happened, but i really think they're futile. At this rate the club are going to resort to getting him drunk and then pushing his hand across the page. Really can't see Th doing anythin before the end of the season - but i suppose the club have to keep letting him know that they love him. I'm growing more confident he will sign but he's clearly going to do it on his, and no one elses, terms. An interesting article by Alan Smith on Jose is here. I think he's about right.

Ok - that's all. Come on boys! A loss would just not be bearable.

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