You may have noticed that news about Arsenal FC has been very slow in the last few days. The signing of Lukas Podolski on Monday seems to have been followed by a few days of little “news” and just the same transfer stories (M’Vila, Vertonghen, etc…) being repeated again and again. As a result, I have decided to sum up my top few Arsenal news stories of the last 24 hours in one, easy-to-read, article:
1) Newcastle and Spurs won last night against Chelsea and Bolton respectively to close the gap between 3rd and 4th/5th place to only one point. Arsenal need to finish 3rd in order to guarantee Champions League football next season; the last thing we need is to finish 4th and have to wait to see whether Chelsea win against Bayern Munich in the Champions League final in 2 weeks.
The important thing is not to focus on how close Spurs and Newcastle are, but to just make sure that we win the last two games of the season. Arsenal vs Norwich is the only Premier League game on Saturday, so we have the potential to put ourselves 4 points ahead again and put the pressure back on the other two teams.
2) Carlos Vela’s scoring streak continues as he grabbed an equaliser for Real Sociedad against Athletico Madrid. Despite a very slow start to his career in Spain, Vela has now scored 10 goals since the beginning of the year. However, in a bizarre turn of events Carlos’s form could actually prove detrimental to any potential move to Sociedad on a permanent basis by driving up his asking price and attracting attention from other clubs. He has already stated that he does not intend to return to Arsenal.
3) Sol Campbell has announced his retirement from professional football with immediate effect, having been without a club since he was released by Newcastle last year. However, this will not be the last we have seen as Sol, as he plans to start taking his coaching badges over the summer with a view to possibly becoming a manager.
“It’s not easy for me to say it’s all over, that’s why I’ve been putting it off for a long time.
“I had a couple of offers to carry on – one from a Premier League team and another from a team who had just been promoted to the Premier League – but I had a foot injury and by the time I’d recovered from that people had already moved on.
“To say that I am not going to play professional football again is difficult because I’ve had a long time at the top and I’ve put in a lot of work and it’s taken a lot of dedication.”
4) Arsène Wenger will take charge of his 900th game as Arsenal manager when we play Norwich on Saturday. Wenger has a win percentage of 57.7% with the Gunners and will also be looking to reach his 200th away win when we play West Brom on the final day of the season.
Team News for Saturday will be available tomorrow, and will be published along with out standard match preview.