Breezy Austria

– What can we really tell from these pre-season fixtures against lightweight Austrian opposition? This isn’t to slight our opposition or our approach to pre-season. I’d argue that the matches are good for building stamina levels, but the training is what is actually most important.

– Tonight we faced Neusiedl 1919 and never got out of second gear. What did we learn today?

– Carlos Vela really loves to score chipped goals. In fact, I’d argue that 75% of his goals for Arsenal have been off chips.

– Johan Djourou went off injured in the first half. He was not limping badly, so it might have been precautionary. He spent all of last year recovering from an injury. Sol Campbell is heavily rumored to be signing with Newcastle. That leaves us with three regular CB’s (four if you count Alex Song, which I’d rather not). We need to sign defenders. People may be happy to be rid of Gallas, but I’d kill to have him back on the squad. With van Persie given the No. 10 jersey, that’s not going to happen.

– Which naturally leads to Koscielny. He is what every Arsenal blogger has pointed out; he has a slight build. But we can’t really tell anything in these games. We’re not facing class opposition, he doesn’t have much to worry about, any lapses could be due to sheer boredom (even if that’s unprofessional). Point blank, we’re not to learn enough about Koscielny until we see him in the Premier League.

– Wilshere and Emmanuel-Thomas continue to impress. Wilshere’s deft touch is a sign of true skill. Emmanuel-Thomas is a battering ram up front and is an alternative to both Bendtner and Chamakh. Emmanuel Frimpong is also making a case that he’s moved up in the queue past Craig Eastmond. Frimpong’s assured defensive shield duty was noticeable, he snapped into tackles and chased until he won the ball back.

– Manuel Almunia finally started in goal. Vito Mannone saved a tame penalty.

– Nasri is pulling all of the strings in midfield right now, but Cesc is taking a holiday in Spain hearing sweet nothings from his best friend Gerard Pique.

– The Emirates Cup is very soon, we’ll learn more then.


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