With Van Persie confirmed as being out for 6 weeks following the knock to his knee from the Carling Cup encounter with Birmingham, and Walcott and Fabregas struggling to recover from their own injuries, Arsenal’s crock list is a worrying one.
It couldn’t have come at a more critical time, with the season winding up to a close and the premiership title at stake, not forgetting the FA Cup quarter-final with Manchester United and the Champions League return leg with Barcelona coming up.
In the absence of the injured players, what are Arsenal’s options to ensure that their challenge in the remaining fronts does not unravel and fizzle out like in the recent past years?
Arsenal will have to start thinking seriously now with the premiership match with Sunderland tonight. No less than a win will ensure that Asenal keep up their challenge with Manchester United. Anything less would mean that Arsenal have lost one too many opportunities to show that they deserve to win the premiership title and more.
A loss or even a draw may further dent any confidence Arsenal may still possess in their ablility to mount a serious or even a credible challenge in all the remaining fronts.
Marouane Chamakh has not played a full game for some time and he looks to have lost his touch. Bendtner plays with a smirk on his face. I am not too sure whether this is out of a sense of confidence or just bravado. It is true that he scored a hat-trick against Leyton Orient in the FA Cup replay .
But Bendtner is not in Van Persie’s class. He is often slow to react and loses the ball once too often when challenged.
Jack Wilshire should be allright. Even fact, he is the only one who is consistent and inspires confidence in the current team. In the absence of Fabregas, Van Persie and Walcott, Nasri would have to shoulder much of the responsibilty. He has to play at his best, perhaps taking on the defence in one to one encounters and trying from a distance.
Everyone knows that Arsenal’s weakness is their inability to mix up their game with long shots and perhaps taking on defenders in one to one encounters instead of passing the ball to death.
If there rest of the team, especially the defence, can from now on play above themselves, on a consistent basis, Arsenal’s 2010/2011 season may yet have a golden lining.
Otherwise, it looks like adios once again for Arsenal.