Arsenal’s new ideal starting XI.

“4-4-2 or 4-2-3-1? What do you think, Jim?”

Morning, folks.

Did you watch the England game last night? I didn’t. I was tempted to sit through it purely to watch Jack Wilshere like a hawk and wince every time a psychotic , bulky Ukrainian went within close proximity of him. I chose against doing such a thing and instead watched Iron Man 3.

With glorious, delicious, beautiful football of note returning at the weekend, and Gooners drooling uncontrollably over Mesut Ozil, I thought I’d share with you all what I consider our strongest 11 should everyone be fit.

Keeper:

I’ve hardly seen Emiliano Viviano play, but Italian keepers come with some pedigree – Massimo Taibi aside. Given his recent excellent performances, Szczsney would be the No.1 at Arsenal for me, although I hope our Italian friend breathes down his neck for the position as much as possible. I’ll try to ignore the fact he looks terrifyingly like Manuel Almunia.  Fabianksi can be placed into a glass box that reads, “open only in the event of absolute necessity”

Defence:

Thomas Vermaelen is back in training, and within a few weeks should be match fit and available. The question is; would you break up the Mertesacker-Koscielny partnership to accommodate our Club captain? As far as I’m concerned, no. Since Thomas was injured, our back 4 has looked solid, and ‘Merterscielny’ are a duo that compliment each other perfectly. One has speed and tenacity, the other has a calmness and intelligence. They work too well to separate, and I’ve long stated I don’t think Vermaelen and Koscielny is a pairing that works.

Sagna is the obvious choice at right full-back. Gibbs and Monreal are fairly evenly matched, and I’m not at all concerned which of them starts as they are both very good players.  On current form, Gibbs would get the nod.

Midfield:

Here’s where the selection headaches present themselves. Assuming everyone’s fit, and Jesus has miraculously replaced Abou Diaby’s glass skeleton with one that actually heals from time to time, we have plenty of options to fill the 3 central positions.

We all know Mesut Ozil will occupy the main attacking role supporting our offensive 3. The real debate comes in regarding which players will operate directly behind him. This is where I think we need Matheiu Flamini. He gives us something that’s long been missing in our midfield; aggresion. He may not be the giant marauding DM we all cried out for, but he is not to be f**ked with. Remember the fixture at The Emirates against Fenerbahce when their players decided to kick Jack across the pitch for the last 30 minutes? Imagine that situation with Flamini in the side. Would they have gotten away with it? I doubt it. Someone would be hospitalised and missing a leg.

Add to that the positional discipline and maturity he’s picked up from his time at Milan, and he’s a starter for me. Alongside him is a tough choice. Jack hasn’t been at his best, but perhaps he’d be a little more free to express himself with Flamini alongside him taking care of the dirty work. Aaron Ramsey has shown some exceptional form thus far, and I can’t really come up with a case for dropping him. Both players would shine if you took the bulk of the defensive responsibility from their shoulders. For reasons I can’t really explain, I think I’d go with Jack. Arteta, Rosicky, Ramsey and Diaby would make for very good options from reserve.

Forwards: 

Giroud as the main focal point is a no-brainer. In fact, it’s really the only choice. Yaya Sanogo is going to need a bit of time to adapt, and I’d sooner we dug up Hitler and placed his corpse in the opponents penalty box than see Bendtner lolloping around up front.

Either side of big Olivier I’d go for Theo and Santi. Some think Santi will lose the ability to create if placed on the left, but I disagree. I think the potential for him and Ozil to interchange will cause all kinds of problems for teams trying to mark them. Theo’s pace and finishing from the right should see a few more goals for him with the service he’ll be getting. Again, The Ox and Podolski make for excellent options when it’s time to rotate.

So, I’d go with this line-uop:

Arsenal’s best starting XI?

That’s just my preferences, folks. Who would you select given a full squad from which to choose? The comments are below, and they are eagerly awaiting your thoughts and line-ups. Let me know a few.

I shall return tomorrow with more. As always; thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards.

39 Comments

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39 Responses to Arsenal’s new ideal starting XI.

  1. KAWEESI

    excellent analysis

  2. Singapore Gooner

    Will replace Wilshere with Ramsey based on current form. Other than that, agree with you on the rest of the players. Goodness gracious! We do look a very menacing team going forward!

    • emma

      u damn correct.. @dude singapore gunner

    • mohamed aziz

      Flamini with ramzy for starters we need ramzy’s machine then cazorla behind ozil with giroud front walcot his usual rw when fit ox on lw sagna rb cocenly with matzaker and gibss lb I dont care which keeper you choose

  3. I agree with your line-up, for the most part. I have seen Ozil play central and left wing and he is awesome in both positions. However, I am yet to be convinced by Santi on the left. If they can interchange from time to time, I guess I would be happier. I would also rather give Arteta the first 60mins alongside Flamini, then replace him with Jack – just until Jack gets back the quality of 2 years ago when Barca were rumored to have a crush on him!

  4. GunnerInTheJ

    Only change I’d make is putting Ramsey in front of Jack. Wilshere doesn’t seem to have his feet yet and Ramsey’s form has been magnificent.

  5. john bond

    your team as shown except flamini out and ramsey in

  6. Wole

    And where is Ramsey in all of this??

  7. Arseniel

    Agree with you fella – except I’d bring in Rambo for Jacko. Think Rambo gets my vote on current form. Good shout on Flambo. Overcrowded in that midfield now but what a beautiful headache to have. Can’t wait for the weekend! COYG!

  8. Enigma

    Fuck me!!! This is so funny! Flamini is now a mad bull heh? I loved the way he rammed that fucking spuds player and the cunt had to go off! I’m used to seeing our gems beign kicked around so I only see it as ‘karma’ when we have someone to kick them back in the faces. Every family has its own Hitler you know…..:) nice write-up

  9. syamupa c

    Looks good, though I would start with Ramsy and bring in Jack later in the second half.

  10. kazeem lemoh

    This team looks more threatening than what we used to have…Excellent..This is a team to beat!

  11. ben

    ALL EXCEPT CHOOSING JACK AHEAD OF RAMSEY..NO WAY !!! “For reasons I can’t really explain, I think I’d go with Jack’ BETTER FIND ONE !

  12. Balaja olumuyiwa

    Where’s our club assistance captain…flamini will always come in from d bench,that’s to solidify our effort….Arteta will play ahead of him. We ηєєd a ball winner and a ball user… .

  13. horses for courses…….. we will use flamini against more accomplished opponents like BVB and chelsea…….. i dont see the point of playing him against teams like sunderland and stokes who are hardly going to pose any threat

    Ramsey-whilshere/Arteta – Ozil

    Flamini – Ramsey/whilsher/arteta – Ozil………

    that is the flexibility we will require.

  14. Selecting central midfield is tough with the likes of Wilshere, Rambo, Arteta and Flamini. But at the moment I’d opt for Ramsey (you can’t leave him out with the form he’s in), and Flamini for, as you rightly pointed out, we lack that midfield marauder type. But when Arteta’s back he’ll provide good, healthy competition and all will be forced to up their game.
    What a line-up though. Best in a good few years in my opinion.

  15. walter

    Am so confused and happy about this, let’s just play n see some actions. Yeaaaaaaaaaa

  16. I agree, Ramsey for Jack but I would go with Arteta instead of Flamini. When you add Viviano, Vermaulen, Flamini, Wilshere Monreal Podolski and Bendtner on the bench this does not look like a week squad – especially when you still have Diaby, Rosicky, Fabianski Jenkinson & Sanogo – even before any youngsters are even considered. Bar Arteta and Sanogo the entire team has played for their national teams

  17. munya

    Flamindo is the real deal. with Rambo hey can be a formidable partinership. Add OZzzzy to the matrix and it becomes awesome. Goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooners forever

  18. azeez

    Szchneey. Sagna. Kos mert. Gibbs. Flamini arteta. Ozil. Walct cazorla. Giroud bench viviano jenko monr rmsy poldi wilsher verm

  19. anewar mohammed

    where is Ramsey? better to start ramsey instead of Wilshere.

  20. Dianjuh

    What is wrong? I thought the article clearly is about “if everyone is fit and in form”….If WILSHERE is fully fit and in form would you take Rambo over him???

  21. don

    good choice,but! stop affiliations,ramsey gets the nod currently before jack easily! flamini necessary starter.love the team and performance merit will prove later arteta will start before jack n ramsey,never! understate arteta,his def better than both of them easily in whatever aspect you wanna view it in midfield,his the ideal box to box midfielder who’ll support flamini when fully fit.wenger will confirm him as skipper when fully fit.the depth in midfield is strong not forgetting rosicky,wenger will have to rotate the players,and this time performance will still be great.i also tip walcott to be arsenals top scorer with ozil now in frame.

  22. DarlingbudsofArse

    Like it very much though I’m saddened by the exclusions of Ramsey, Arteta, Rosicky and the Ox! On Diaby, yes Christ can heal him if he has the faith in Him rather than faith in another. I hope this is PC!

  23. DarlingbudsofArse

    Looks like Rambo carries the vote over Jacko! I’d suggest you now change your line-up!

  24. deephenry

    same team as yours, only arteta in place of wilshere, and will use wilshere sparingly to protect his injury. also interchange arteta with ramsey. flamini is always a starter.

  25. Shevo

    Nothing wrong with this team. If you’re fit and in form then you’re in. I can’t disagree with any of the comments about Rambo and Arteta. But if you’re fit and playing well then the man with the shirt keeps it. That’s why we want a big squad and I’m sure AW will find ways to keep everyone happy.
    Come on you beautiful gunners.

  26. atid

    i cant believe that no one looks at replacing Walcott? i think rosicky or Wilshire might be a better option or ox and podolski when fit. this would allow ramsey and arteta to reunite in midfield, with flamini/diaby giving us a French option when diaby is fit onviously.

    i know leaving out Walcott reduces the pace and the width, but pehaps with all that creativity in the side, Walcott might be able to be the back up to giroud.

    one thing for sure is that the signings of flamini and ozil has given us much better options, now we just need to get people fit and also sign a world class defender and a world class striker.

  27. T2T

    On current form and expectations for Özil:
    Szczesny
    Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs
    Arteta, Ramsey
    Özil
    Walcott, Giroud, Cazorla
    Subs: Viviano, Vermaelen, Flamini, Diaby, Wilshere, Rosciky, Podolski

    When we have few injuries, we have an abundance of top quality players except we’re very light on central strikers. We can also do with a true winger. However, we are beginning to see a squad where we will be able to more carefulle slot the youngsters in. Arteta/Flamini/Ramsey/Wilshere/Diaby can fill the two more defensive MF positions while Özil/Rosicky/Cazorla/Wilshere/Ramsey/Oxlade-Chamberlain can rotate the offensive MF (number 10 role). Compare the current squad with the one 3-4 years ago and see how the average age has increased. We used to play with 7-9 young and inexperienced players while e.g. ManU played with 9-10 experienced and only had 1-2 inexperienced. We are now getting to that level. We can allow Zelalem, Gnabry, Akpom, Eisfeld, etc a game every now and then. We can allow Wilshere some rest and let him develop as a player; he’s still young.
    I hope AW rotates 1-3 players every week and use the subs to keep another 1-3 fresher.

  28. wilson mtetwa

    great analysis and with it im sure we will make it

  29. I wonder how you could leave on Sagna who runs out of steam yet you’ve Jeckinson!

  30. Tobi

    Lots to laugh on with the comment,How I wish 12 players could feature to have rambo-jacko in front of flamini/arteta. What would it look like if VP was stil in that front?!

  31. skenelicious

    Don’t knw bout u guys buh current form i go for rambo buh general i will go for jack and i prefer sagna as a sub center back not first team no2 forward i tink bendtner shud not be under rated pls as for giroud thumb’s up up gunners

  32. Mav361

    There’s a lot of love for Rambo on here which is fantastic for the lad he has been immense In my humble opinion

    With regards to your team I’d go for exactly the same except I think Mesut Ozil will be on the bench & Rambo will start as its an away game with Ozil making an appearance around the 60 minute mark ……. With the Gooners already 2-0 up

    Can’t fucking wait

  33. Fuck just noticed your line up was for a fully fit starting 11 not a team for Saturday the against Sunderland ………… Doh

    Still make room for Rambo on current form tho

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