By 1970’s Gooner
It is slightly unfortunate that Arsenal are now entering the most important series of games in their calendar without their main striker in Robin Van Persie.
It is a period where this young team will have to show its credentials against the big boys of Liverpool and Manchester United. The latter following an away game in the Champions League to Slavia Prague.
It’s not your first team players that win you trophies but your squad. But just who can adequately replace Van Persie for these games has now assumed major importance following Eduardo’s very disappointing display against Bolton.
He has not yet adapted to the pace, tight marking from behind and in your face type of English football.
He could not hold the ball up front with the result that he couldn't connect with Adebayor nor bring other players into the game. He reminds me of similar performances put in by Adebayor in his first season in this League.
Eduardo was similarly ineffective on the last occasion he was given a start which was against Blackburn away.
All this poses serious selection dilemmas for Wenger who has other options of course.
His first is to play Hleb just behind Adebayor in 4 5 1 formation with Rosicky and Eboue/Walcott as the wide midfield men.
He reverted to this when he made the inspired match winning changes against Bolton. It was also the formation that served him well at the beginning of the season. It served Hleb as well.
The second option is to bring Bendtner on to partner Adebayor in a 4 4 2 formation.
I watched Bendtner perform very well for Denmark in the Euro qualifiers and his direct physical style is at the moment more effective than Eduardo’s ball to feet approach.
The more unexpected but interesting option is to reinstall Gilberto into a three man midfield, in a 4 3 3 formation along Fabregas and Flamini.
Adebayor could then be flanked by Hleb and Rosicky. Fabregas and Flamini pushing forward in support as and when the occasion demands.
Judging by Wenger’s actions in team selection so far he is likely to give Eduardo every chance to prove himself.
He will probably select him for the Champions League game in Prague and give him the chance to show what he can do and hope he can get a goal which will prop up his confidence level.
But these types of games cannot be compared to the pressure of facing the Liverpools and Man Utds of this world.
Arsene Wenger has some serious thinking to do.
Out of the walkway and onto the motorway. Can Eduardo propel Arsenal to the title starting today against Bolton?
Are you English or Goonerish?