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Player News - Arsenal

Date: Team: Pos:

Petr Cech has announced that he will be retiring from professional football at the end of the current season after 20 seasons as a professional.

Cech, who has been relegated to second string goalkeeper behind Bernd Leno, has officially announced his retirement at the end of the season. He will retire as one of the most decorated goalkeepers in Premier League history. For Arsenal, Cech's retirement likely means needing to find another goalkeeper to compete with/back-up Leno in the summer as there are no likely candidates high up in the youth ranks. David Ospina is still on the books but is unlikely to return to the club as a reserve.
Source: Twitter
Jan 15 - 11:28 AM

Mesut Ozil joined a host of other Gunners returning to training this week but he was absent from the match day squad and his absence was felt as the Gunners failed to generate meaningful chances and fell to West Ham 1-0 at the London Stadium.

It was all set up for Mesut Ozil to make an important return to the Arsenal starting line-up or at least make a big contribution from the bench. The team has struggled over their past few matches and, surely, felt the absences of creative presences like Ozil and Henrik Mkhitaryan. With Ozil resuming training, the expectation was that he could feature in some role but Unai Emery held him out and the Gunners paid as they struggled to create quality chances over the course of the match. With Chelsea next on the fixture list it is hard to see Ozil returning straight back against competition of that quality.
Source: Espn.com
Jan 12 - 9:36 AM

Nacho Monreal is healthy again and signed to a season-long extension that will take him through next season at the Emirates. The next big question is whether he is the preferred starter for Unai Emery.

One of the big mysteries of the Unai Emery era so far is the identity of his preferred starting left back. The position has been injury-plagued all season for the new Arsenal manager and only now does he have both Sead Kolasinac and Nacho Monreal healthy to force him to make a decision between the two. On the evidence we've seen under both Emery and Wenger, Kolasinac is best suited as a wing-back supported by a three-man center back group while Monreal is the superior two-way player if the formation has only two center backs. How Arsenal lines up going forward will likely dictate who is the preferred starter. Given all of the injuries recently, Arsenal's formations have been more down to necessity rather than strategy. With Monreal, Koscielny, Mustafi, and Bellerin all healthy again, we will find out more about the intended strategy.
Source: BBC Sport
Jan 11 - 10:24 AM

Mesut Ozil is back to full training and seems likely to start for the Gunners against West Ham at the London Stadium on Saturday.

Ozil is about as controversial a figure as there is in the Premier League. One weekend he is cutting an opponent apart with his creativity, the next he has gone missing, and the one after that his Arsenal future is in doubt. With Henrikh Mkhitaryan still out injured though, Ozil is likely to rejoin the starting group against an opponent in West Ham who should present the sort of "intense" opposition that has caused Unai Emery to hold Ozil out before his injury issues in December. Expect Ozil to start and play well and the cycle of drama to start again when he's then held out next weekend against Chelsea at the Emirates.
Source: BBC Sport
Jan 11 - 10:19 AM

Laurent Koscielny joins a number of Arsenal defenders again available after suffering injury concerns over the festive period.

Expect the France international to start against West Ham on Saturday. Between recovery from his back injury and additional time to return to match fitness after a long layoff, Koscielny is going to be critical to the club's fortunes over the second half of the season. Over the summer, you would expect Arsenal to try to refresh the center back corps but, until then, look for Emery to count on veterans like Koscielny and Sokratis to anchor the fight for a spot in next season's Champions League.
Source: BBC Sport
Jan 11 - 10:15 AM

Shkodran Mustafi has recovered from the hamstring injury that caused him to miss time over the holidays and is available for selection against West Ham on Saturday.

The German international has struggled at times this season but his availability is still critical for the Gunners who are extremely thin at center back after the long-term injury to Rob Holding. With Unai Emery seeming to prefer a three-man center back corps toward the end of the club's winning streak, it is important that Mustafi, Sokratis and Laurent Koscielny are all available with Holding gone for the season. The trio is probably not Emery's ideal solution at the back but it beats forcing Stephan Lichtsteiner or Nacho Monreal into a central role.
Source: BBC Sport
Jan 11 - 10:12 AM

Hector Bellerin has returned to training and will be available to Unai Emery for the trip to the London Stadium to face West Ham in Saturday's late fixture.

The Spanish right back was sorely missed by the Gunners over the festive period. His absence, along with that of other key members of the defense, highlighted the fragility of what Unai Emery was able to achieve in the first half of the season. With Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, and Monreal all fit again, the Gunners will have few excuses if they don't return to winning ways against a mid-table opponent.
Source: BBC Sport
Jan 11 - 10:08 AM

The Guardian are reporting that Aaron Ramsey's deal to move from Arsenal to Juventus on a free transfer over the summer has been completed.

The move, long-expected, has finally been confirmed. Evaluating it is far more difficult. Ramsey certainly has a level of talent that Arsenal need in their squad. That said, he has been an awkward fit under both Arsene Wenger and Unai Emery. Throw in Ramsey's injury history and the talent doesn't quite match up to the production and, likely, the contract demands. Ramsey has started over 30 league matches only three times in his years at Arsenal and only once since the 2013-14 season. In the ten full seasons he has been at the club, he has averaged just over three goals and two assists per season. The loss of the player he has shown he can be is a big deal, the loss of the player he has been for the past ten years is less of a big deal. If Arsenal were a club like Manchester City or Chelsea without a real budget then retaining him would be the only move. Constrained by a real budget, letting Ramsey find a new home makes all the sense in the world.
Source: The Guardian
Jan 11 - 8:30 AM

Joe Willock scored two first half goals as Arsenal cruised to a 3-0 victory over Blackpool in the third round of the FA Cup.

The tradition of mixing veterans who need to stay sharp with high potential young players in cup competitions continued under Unai Emery. Star of the match Joe Willock was joined by Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Eddie Nketiah alongside veterans like Petr Cech and Laurent Koscielny as the Gunners brushed off Blackpool while resting a number of first team players.
Source: Espn.com
Jan 5 - 2:34 PM

Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal Invincibles must be raising a toast this evening as the Premier League's last unbeaten team went down to defeat.

Times haven't been great for the Gunners with the exception of the odd FA Cup title. What they csn continue to claim for at least one more season will be the title as the Premier League's only side to navigate a season undefeated. Liverpool's loss to Manchester City to close out the festive schedule put a loss on every team for the 2018-19 season. With the number of quality teams at the top of the league, it seems likely the Invincibles title will remain the exclusive property of Arsenal for years to come.
Source: Espn.com
Jan 3 - 5:32 PM

Arsenal put their loss to Liverpool a couple of days ago well behind them as they took advantage of a haphazard Fulham defense on their way to a 4-1 victory.

Sometimes, minimal recovery time is a good thing, as the Gunners got themselves back on track quickly. They would take the lead on 25 minutes through Granit Xhaka, who took an Alex Iwobi ball and smashed it home from close range. The next goal would not come until 10 minutes into the second half, when Alexander Lacazette put the ball in after a nice cutback pass from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Fulham would pull one back but Arsenal were plenty thirsty for more. Aaron Ramsey stuck one into the top corner not long after his introduction off the bench, then Aubameyang wrapped up the scoring with an effort helped by a deflection. The win moves Arsenal to within two points of fourth-place Chelsea.
Source: Telegraph
Jan 1 - 12:30 PM

Ainsley Maitland-Niles scored his first Premier League goal but it was for naught as Liverpool decimated the Gunners 5-1 at Anfield.

It was a bittersweet first goal in the league for Maitland-Niles. He put the Gunners up 1-0 early in a match they were expected to lose. Lose they did as the defense, missing Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin and facing the league leaders, collapsed hard. Expect the Gunners to continue to struggle until they can bolster a defense that was counting on Stephan Lichtsteiner well past his prime.
Source: Espn.com
Sat, Dec 29, 2018 04:42:00 PM

Mesut Ozil's tumultuous season continues as he will miss out on Saturday's trip to Anfield with a knee complaint.

Reports out of the Emirates indicate that Mesut Ozil trained on Friday but complained of soreness in his knee after training and was withdrawn from the squad for Arsenal's Week 20 headliner with league leaders Liverpool. With Ozil out and Henrikh Mkhitaryan also missing for the next month or so, attacking midfield duties will fall to Alex Iwobi and Aaron Ramsey with Iwobi likely getting the start.
Source: Espn.com
Sat, Dec 29, 2018 08:08:00 AM

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored again but Arsenal could only draw at the AmEx Stadium on Boxing Day.

Auba remained one of the league's form goalscorers as he scored early to put Arsenal up 1-0. It was a familiar downfall though with Stephan Lichtsteiner beaten for speed and Bernd Leno tried to make up for a defensive lapse with a failed aggressive move outside his box. Until the defense is healthy, the Gunners will be vulnerable.
Source: Espn.com
Wed, Dec 26, 2018 02:18:00 PM

Henrikh Mkhitaryan will miss the festive schedule and beyond with a broken metatarsal bone.

The Arsenal midfielder had come back into the starting lineup in recent weeks but will now be out for between four and six weeks according to reports. Expect Mesut Ozil to return to the starting group against lesser sides with Alex Iwobi coming in against bigger sides to press and play defense.
Source: BBC Sport
Tue, Dec 25, 2018 11:01:00 AM


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