Training Camp Offers New Opportunities For Squad
The first team squad is ensconced in their Austrian training camp, the first friendly of the tour against Sturm Graz evoking memories of former European forays, Graz beaten 2 – 1 on aggregate in the ultimately unsuccessful defence of the Fairs Cup in 1970-71. That season’s entry into the competition was another first for Arsenal, the club failed to finish amongst the qualifying places in the League and persuaded the FA, Football League and Uefa that a rule change to permit them to defend the trophy was equitable.
Such lofty matters are a dim and distant memory with question marks about some and what the future holds for them. Two who fall into that category are Barazite and Simpson. Both have been spoken of as part of Arsenal’s future and as such, would have been expected to travel with the first team. That has not happened. Simpson’s future was the subject of speculation earlier in the summer with QPR mooted as a destination as well as the lower reaches of the Premier League. Nothing materialised and it is not unreasonable to ask whether Wenger is waiting to see if an offer comes in f0r the striker.
The pair spent last season in loan spells, Barazite got decent reviews at Derby but only managed one goal in his 30 appearances. Perhaps in that time it became evident that his development was not as pronounced as the coaching staff believed. There is a world of difference between the reserves and the Football League on a weekly basis. For others such as Randall, their absence is no surprise. Whilst he is a decent player, he lacks a certain quality that makes you think that he will command a first team place at Arsenal. Like others before him, his career seems to be away from Arsenal.
One who is making the grade is Jack Wilshire. Ahead of The Emirates Trophy, the youngster observed:
It’s a chance to show what you can do against some of the best clubs. It’s good for the younger players too. They can make an impact in front of the manager. As a young player you always want to take your chance and the Emirates Cup is really good for that.It’s a chance to show what you can do against some of the best clubs. It’s good for the younger players too. They can make an impact in front of the manager.
For many, Wilshere is The Great White Hope, a throwback to yesteryear when someone perceived as ‘one of us‘ makes it through the ranks. There is a weight of expectation on his shoulders which he may or may not be aware of; I hope that it does not become a millstone and that those who expect so much of him, allow him the time to develop without criticising his every move should they turn out to be less than perfect. This is the danger of youth development. Producing young players on a consistent basis means that occasionally there will be a gem who shines through.
At Arsenal some of the lustre has dimmed when the first team has beckoned, names such as Lupoli and Bentley spring immediately to mind. Both were outstanding prospects but when their time came, the gap proved too large to bridge and careers were forged elsewhere with the latter proving to be a disappointment a succession of managers, his attitude not matching his abilities.
Wilshere’s loan spell at Bolton was good but not outstanding. He showed flashes of the inspiration and has now to develop that consistently. The question for Arsene is whether that will best be served in the Arsenal squad or once more, away from the light at a “lesser” club. If the latter means he will play twenty more games in a season then perhaps that is the best option although in Wenger’s mind, last season’s injury record will no doubt be a big factor.
Others received boosts in different ways without doing anything. Robin van Persie has been handed the Number 10 shirt next season, setting him further along the path to achieving his goal of being considered an ‘Arsenal Great’ in the same reverential way we remember Dennis Bergkamp. Carlos Vela, as a by-product of that, received a boost in his elevation to 11. That will leave the 9 shirt free if Eduardo completes his move to Donetsk shortly. Presumably the club will be refunding those who have bought their Bendtner or Chamakh tops already.
It would not be the pre-season if They weren’t at it once more. Rent-a-gob in chief, Xavi, has dropped the DNA and now tells the world Cesc is only on loan at Arsenal. A hell of a loan deal and one that Arsenal are definitely getting the better side of. Perhaps Arsene could get us a few more where we “borrow” the player and then get £60m when he returns to his parent club. Anyway, Xavi forgets one thing; we’re all on loan throughout life, borrowed before we head off into the ether.
Posted on July 21, 2010, in Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Premiership, Soccer, Transfer Gossip and tagged Arsenal, Football, Premier League, Soccer, Transfer Gossip. Bookmark the permalink. 269 Comments.