Starting XI for the game against West Ham.

FA Premiership; Saturday Oct 6th, West Ham (a)

Morning, curious and knowledge-hungry lifeforms of this ‘ere planet.

Today, we make a short trip to the home of Allardyce. As a youngster, I loved the tale of the 3 Billy Goats Gruff. These days I relate that part of my youth to Arsenal playing a team Fat Sam is in charge of; all we want to do is reach the lush grass on the other side (play football), but we’ll have to defeat a hideous fucking troll in order to do so (Allardyce’s hoof-it tactics). In that tale, brains and cunning overcome neolithic stupidity, and that’s kind of how I see the two teams matching up.

The bad news is we’ll probably have to endure 90 minutes of long balls being thumped toward Andy Carroll – if ever there’s a player suited to the way Allardyce wants to send a team out, it’s him. But we shouldn’t be concerning ourselves too much with the intent of our opponents. There is more than enough in the Arsenal locker in terms of skill and guile to vanquish West Ham. If we play to our strengths and assert our own physicality, I’m certain we’ll win the game.

As always, they’ll be one or two changes. Personally, I can’t see how we can leave Mertesacker out of this game. He’s fit from the alleged bout of flu that prevented him appearing on Wednesday, and his calmness and ariel prowess will be of a greater need than the Vermaelen /Koscielny partnership. Since the BFG hasn’t been selected, we’ve almost instantly started to look vulnerable at the back. In a game in which we’re certain to be bombarded arielly, we need him. I doubt any of you will disagree.

The other berth under debate is who comes in for Diaby. It’s my opinion that, in a tricky away fixture, Francis Coquelin is the wiser choice. I wouldn’t be surprised if Le Boss opted for Aaron Ramsey on the right side of our front three to give a bit more stability to our midfield.

All things considered, my XI would be:

Key to victory will be our ability to deal with high balls, and that means added responsibility on the sometimes suspect handling of Vito Mannone. He’s a solid shot stopper, but he’ll be tested tomorrow in the air, and I’d be telling fibs if I exclaimed my total confidence in him. He’ll need to be protected, and I fully expect West Ham will target him.

I’m confident we’ll win tomorrow, but nervous enough about our recent defensive blunders to feel ill at ease before kick off. Alas, I’ll be working this afternoon, but I’ll be plugged into 5live – assuming they’ve commentary on the game – or whatever other available medium I can find.

What are you views on the team? How would you start? Do you think Sam Allardyce is a grotesque, portly troll with a nausea-inducing, leathered face? Let me know in the comments.

Lastly, do you fancy a cheeky punt on the game? Well, click below for Bet Victor’s latest odds and new membership deals.

Arsenal vs West ham odds

Thanks for reading, you beautiful people. I love each and every one of you. Even YOU.

7 Comments

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7 Responses to Starting XI for the game against West Ham.

  1. mike

    as for me thats , thats the best line up , there will be way gd reason to leave per for this match and as well ramsey to increase the number of our mid filders cos i will expect arteta to track nolan from cutting inside . all i all e need to work as a team in all the departments cos we all know how that fat sam plays against us , gd luck folks , 3 points in the bag .

  2. Ash

    Depends how they are going to play. I would be tempted to play Koscielny although I think Per and TV5 are better. Only because Kos is taller than TV5 and more physical than Per. Although Per is tall, his arial isn’t as good as the other 2. But at the same time. Might sound strange but I would b tempted if it had to be done to play TV5 in the ball winning roll. Not sure Coq or Ramsy are strong enough against Sams long ball and aggressive tactics

  3. Peter.W.

    I admit my opinion on Per has changed. Last term his continual lack of ability to stand up in contact, was frustrating. Clearly his ability to read the game and organise his troops, is one of the main reasons for our defense starting out so well.

    • idris mugalu

      i do accept the back four with per back as he has proved this term that he is the best organiser of the back four in the league. also i would gamble on starting Ground up fromt or Theo as against uncle sam aggressiveness is the best option. also i would bring firipongo on the bench or even a head of Francis.

  4. Insyder

    Ramsey should start as a sub. Give Theo a chance to partner with Gervinho. I would have prefer for this game they spare Carzola coz of the rough nature of this game & start Arshavin behind Giroud & Theo plus Podolski on the wings. In defense would prefer Mers to replace either Kos or Verm to stop Caroll boy. Arteta & Coquelin in the defense mid. Thatmy thot about to days game.

  5. chuky one'pilla

    In this kind of game, I’ll opt to play giroud up front and push gervinho to the right. Any team coached by big sam is always physical and giroud is strong. He can help us defend the set pieces and can bring our wide men into play in the attack.

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