Bad news on Cech as Wenger reveals team news for NLD

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Arsene Wenger has revealed the latest team news ahead of tomorrow’s critical clash against Sp*rs.

After the dismal defeat to Swansea, the pressure is really on in what’s an unusually top-of-the-table North London derby.

The bad news regarding Petr Cech was confirmed after the keeper pulled a muscle racing back upfield from a late Arsenal corner. The Czech international is set to miss 3-4 weeks with a calf strain, brought about as a result from him carrying a groin injury.

“He had a groin alert,” said Wenger. “He could not kick the ball properly on the first, goal and maybe provoked another injury.”

He’ll be replaced by David Ospina, with Wenger again reiterating his faith in the Colombian international.

“Of course, I have completely confidence in David,” said the manager. “I’m not worried at all on that front.”

Laurent Koscielny also misses out with the calf strain that kept him out of Wednesday’s game.

Other than that there don’t appear to be any new injuries from Wednesday night, and it remains to be seen how Wenger rejigs his team as we prepare to the face the old enemy.

Listen to this week’s Arsecast – dissecting the week that was and more

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H

Cech please!

remember the invincible

Complete faith in Ospina. LMAO

@Stuart_Ten

People going ott on Ospina. He’s had a couple of wobbles, and one high profile cock up in CL (so did Cech first game of the season), but was solid last season. He’s also a WC keeper.

But, ‘banter’..

Dave A.

bet you wasnt saying that when he came on and helped us cling the UCL spot last season. He isnt a world beater but he is far more dependable than Woj

Sean

The only positive I can take from this abysmal news is the term ‘groin alert’.

Now I have something to say every time I saunter into a room naked.

Mesut Aussie

I just had a bowel alert when reading this news…. Mind you I’ve had to throw about half a dozen pairs of undies out over the last couple of months, mainly mid Saturday and Sunday afternoons for some reason.

78/79/80

You make it sound like something you do often. Perhaps inadvertently. No wonder you are looking for a catch phrase to soften the blow.

Sean

And the disciplinary

Gooners & Roses

If Ospina playing gets us back to similar winning ways like last season that would be great. I have faith in him, but probably not as much as Wenger’s in Theo. Not sure why I bring that up.

gee

Theo “the key to victory in NLD is high workrate” Walcott
i have defended this guy through some patchy form, but that quote almost made me fall of my chair.

listen lads insead of talking a good game in the media jus stfu and prove it with ur actions and i dont care if your being forced by journo to answer tell them to get and talk when u have achieved your goals.

Thierry Bergkamp

Any unrealistic hopes are now dead

Hectorious

Ooooooooooo-spiii-nooooooooo!

Alex

Remember our resurgence last season when we won at Man City? Aside from Conquering, it also started with Ooooospina!! Sorry guys it’s the only hope I have left to hold on to.

Alex

Coquelin*. Even my autocorrect is off form

dpro

I think ‘Conquering’ works pretty well there, too.

RamseyMidfieldNightmare

Perhaps Coquering? Oh no, it sounds like an italian reading the description of a performance enhancing sexual aid.

Bosscielny

This keeps getting better and better.

alive agyo

Wenger, just go ahead with your match

Goonerette

I’m feeling so down after reading this, it’s incredible. It feels like a slap in the face.

AngelGooner

I like Ospina but his kicking leaves a lot to be desired.. anyway despite all this recent bulls**t i still think we can pull a performance out on Saturday. Even if the title is out of our grasp we can give it away to these sp*rs chumps

Ben

I hope the derby will spark some energy back into the team. Would love to see Alexis score again.

Stewart Robson's therapist

Chambers should be ahead of Gabriel in the centre-half pecking order. I swear this is not a knee-jerk reaction to Gabriel’s recent form; I’ve thought this for a long time. He’s a bit of a headless chicken for my liking. Chambers has always played well at centre-back, with the exception of the first half against Liverpool but there were mitigating factors on that occasion. He gets a bad press purely because of his time at right-back, which is unfair as it’s obviously not his natural position. I think he’s a mature, calm and intelligent player despite his age, and we… Read more »

Ozil's a Gunner

Gabriel has cost us so many games this season
Chelsea(home&away),Bayern(away),Man Utd(Away),Norwich(Away),Swansea(away)
Chambers has played well whenever given the chance and deserves to be ahead of Gabriel

Gus Caesar

I agree – I think Gabriel was a bundle of nerves against Sunderland in the cup 2 months ago and he hasn’t looked any more assured since. Chambers looked much steadier when he came on against Leicester and deserves a chance.

MC1892

Absolutely, personally think that Chambers is really not that far away from Stones’ ability at centre half. So good at bringing the ball out and really strong in the tackle, I’d give him and Koscielny a go when Per needs a rest. Gabriel has regressed massively, start of this season I thought he was similar in ability to Kos when he first arrived but is miles from that at the moment.

CJ

Have Mert and Chambers ever started a match together this season? Chambers seems definitely more composed than Gab at the moment, is a better distributor of the ball, but i don’t think he’s as good a tackler or is as strong defensively. I would maybe bring him on as a sub but not start him.

Toure motors

Ah bollocks

PY

Keep the faith guys. We are not perfoming well as a team but as fans we have to do our part as well – support the team till the end. COYG!

spinner

I wonder how many bad decisions and bad luck he’ll be referring to after tomorrow’s match?

Oh well, Let’s all think positively. 2 years we finished 4th with 79 points. We can still beat that points total this year, but only if we win all 10 of our remaining fixtures.

Gus Caesar

To be fair, we’ve had some horrible decisions against us this season and the number of penalties that we’ve been denied has been ridiculous. It’s not an excuse for the results recently but games like tomorrow are always narrow and one poor decision could be massive. We’ve got Oliver tomorrow though and I think he’s usually one of the more reliable ones.

MC1892

Everyone’s had horrible decisions, the refereeing standard in English is just atrocious across the board (bar one or two). Let’s not start apportioning even a tiny percentage of blame on that, will just make us even more of a laughing stock!

Man Manny

It is very Arsenal-like to go to WHL, play well and win. With this team, you never know.

Tomislav

If only we bought that Woodwork guy from Swansea.

Graham

I often have groin alerts ?

Scott from London, Ontario, Canada

That’s what she said…

Gus Caesar

It’s obviously a blow but Ospina isn’t quite the disaster that people make him out to be. I’d rather have him on the bench than quite a few of the reserve keepers at other teams – he’s an international keeper with a lot of experience, it could be a lot worse. Let’s hope he puts in the kind of display that goes down in Arsenal legend.

Bob Davis

Bad news. I hope Cech comes back quickly, we all know how our injured players disappear for months. Ospina in goal for a North London derby of this importance. I’m not convinced. I really hope he’s up for it.

Gabriel looks to be struggling and if he is injured he should be rested. Bring in Chambers, he played really well in his last game.

Sp?rs look strong. There injured players, Deli Ally and Llanna or whatever they are called will be back. We fans deserve a decent performance and 3 points against these rats.

COYG!

ger

The more we want Chambers, the more Gabby will play!
Its a Wenger thing.

Paul

Yeah Arsene us fans want you to play Walcott and Gabriel! 😉

Me So Hornsey

Spurs have no real pace up front so Chambers should definately start ahead of Gabriel.

Their pressing will be relentless so we need a composed Mert and Chambers combo at the back. I’d push Ramsey out right if Campbell doesn’t start and have Elneny and Coq in the middle.

Need to play for pride in this one. Never seen a Tottenham side so confident they’ll beat us we need to properly ram it up them, play for fouls, penalties, getting them sent off, anything it takes. They CANNOT be allowed to win the league!

No.8

I agree completely. Chambers will be more composed on the ball. But the system is not working without a quality ball carrier in midfield. Arsene needs to change it. I really believe he needs to revert to a straight 4 3 3 with Elneny, Coquelin and Ramsey the extra midfield player. We need to provide an extra midfielder because that seems to me to be where we keep breaking down (or never getting started). With the extra man we should be able to cope better when we lose possession in our own half. This should lead to more creative play… Read more »

Tony Hall

Absolutely have to win this one to keep the albeit faint hope still alive …

Ospina
Bellerin, BFG, Chambers, Monreal.
Coq, Eneny
Campbell, Ozil, Alexis or Ramsey
Danny

I would say Alexis needs a rest but who the fuck else do you play, so not want to see Gabriel or Theo starting with Olly an impact sub.

Miranda

Cech’s groin alert didn’t first happen during the game. It was known about earlier but Wenger, not for the first time, thought it a risk worth taking. Also not for the first time, he’s suggesting that it was Cech’s fault for saying he felt OK. Players always say they feel OK. They want to play and they don’t want to look like moaning minnies or chickens. The responsibility is the manager’s and the fitness people’s. Leaving aside the stupid and unnecessary risk to the rest of Cech’s season, I don’t understand why a fit Ospina wouldn’t have been a better… Read more »

JaheimDaUgandanGooner

No one seems to be questioning why Wenger played Cech so much if he knew he was carrying a bit of a knock. That certainly doesn’t speak to much trust of Ospina, now does it? Well, he’s all we’ve got now. Let’s hope he goes full Stoppy McStoppington between the sticks every chance he’s given henceforth. We most definitely need it.
COYG!

Miranda

No, that’s right. Wenger doesn’t do rest-and-rotate like most other managers do. He clearly doesn’t trust his second choices so they never play until injuries force it. Unsurprisingly, they then lack confidence, don’t gel with their team-mates are desperate to prove themselves and fly into rash tackles or try to stay on when clearly in pain (Wilshere, Ox) and generally perform less well than under different circumstances they would capable of, which means they get ditched as soon as possible and the whole cycle of no-confidence-leading-to-mistakes starts over again. Wenger has complained about the injuries and lack of fight and… Read more »

buzzm

On 11th February Wilshere was “back running, on a fitness programme” but not ready for “3 to 4 weeks”
On 4th March Wilshere was “not back running” but apparently all “going to plan”

:/

Paul

“Cech had a groin alert”…but we ignored it….!

Mark

Luckily Spuds won’t be serving in high crosses the whole match as some teams do against us where Opsina really struggles. Cech could easily miss the next seven matches including FA Quaterfinal if we get by Hull (a big if with our recent run of performances). Ospina did very well last year for the run-in, just hope he has been able to maintain match sharpness with his limited appearances.

podgygooner

Of course, he’s got ‘complete confidence in David’ but not so complete that he would replace the keeper on the pitch having a ‘groin alert’.

The result: we lose Cech for a month.

Poor management.

badaab

I’m actually glad I’ll be at work tomorrow during this so I won’t have to watch and be irritated the whole game. Have missed watching quite a few recent matches, and just been plain disappointed.
Won’t be booking a trip to LA or the Bay Area this summer and spending my money on the team for the same disappointment. Is a third FA Cup really all we have to look forward to this year?

George

What’s ‘3-4 weeks’ in Arsenal time?

ciderman

Todays match could be a win win – win and we will all be happy, draw and we will dent the spuds attempts to win the league, lose and hopefully Wenger steps down!!!