Per Mertesacker believes strongly that Arsenal will stun Manchester City this weekend and cement their place as genuine title contenders for the 2012-13 campaign. The Gunners are unbeaten so far this season and the German, who appears to have usurped Laurent Koscielny in the back-line believes to compete at the top of the league winning at The Etihad, should be a task Arsenal can achieve, if they perform at their current level.
The story on Vito Mannone’s grateful respect to Hull City has been extended into today’s press. The Italian goalkeeper elaborated after the Montpellier victory about how his confidence had been shot after a disastrous performance against Olympiakos in the Champions League last December and how his spell at Hull City, that involved 24 straight games and a club record six clean sheets on the bounce has helped him re-piece his career once again as he now pushes for the number one jersey at The Emirates.
Ray Parlour believes that Theo Walcott is gambling with his career over his current contract demands at The Emirates. Walcott has reportedly turned down an offer of £75,000 a week suggesting he deserves a fee closer to £100,000 considering his comparative seniority in the squad but Parlour feels delaying the contract signing is only detrimental to the 23-year-old England international. He feels he should either sign the deal and continue his progress on the pitch or risk faltering this season while he is distracted by money issues off the pitch.
Arsenal are preparing to go into a transfer battle with Newcastle United for the teenage sensation Arnold Paul Garita from French club Chateauroux. The pacy attacker, born in Cameroon, is just 17 and despite not making a first team appearance for the French outfit he has attracted interest after scoring bags of goals within the youth system. Arsenal and Newcastle are not alone however as interest from across Europe grows in the prospect who would be available for a bargain £100,000 compensation package with Wolfsburg and Espanyol also circling around a deal.
Great news for Arsenal fans as Jack Wilshere joined first team training for the first time in 14 months today. The 20-year-old England international has been plagued recently by foot, knee and ankle problems that have threatened to scupper his early progression. A specially arranged friendly is being mooted as a possible return for action but Arsene Wenger insists he will not rush the Stevenage born talent into first team action.
And he is not the only one, Emmanuel Frimpong confirmed on Twitter that he too is back training with the first team after the injury he suffered on loan at Wolves last season. He also commented that Wilshere looks like he has 'never been away.'
In the wake of Demba Ba’s apparent likelihood to leave Newcastle come January, Goal.com have started a poll to decide which club people would most like to see him move to; with Arsenal coming out on top. At the time of this article Arsenal sat above Liverpool by around 5% of the vote and had double the votes of the option for him to stay at Newcastle. Ba has a £7million release clause in his contract and is unhappy with his current role at the club.
Chuks Aneke could extend his loan spell at Crewe Alexandra after impressing on the deal so far. Originally a 4 week deal Alex manager Steve Davis wants to extend the deal as he has missed much of the current deal with suspension.
Arsenal’s promising talent Jack Jebb has signed his first professional contract with The Gunners. The technically gifted creative midfielder who has been compared to Paul Scholes and represented England at youth level is a young talent to keep an eye on.
What are your thoughts on everything happening at Arsenal FC on the 20th September 2012?
image: © Ronnie Macdonald