It was a somewhat makeshift team that took on plucky Plymouth Argyle on Saturday with the likes of Lukasz Fabianski and Aaron Ramsey starting, while Kieran Gibbs, Carlos Vela and Jack Wilshere enjoyed some valuable FA Cup experience with appearances off the bench.
Plymouth did more than just make up the numbers and their fans helped create a good atmosphere at the Emirates Stadium, reminding us all of what a special meaning the FA Cup has for clubs from the lower divisions.
I’m not saying that in a condescending way: rather I’m trying to make the point that the FA Cup is a competition that us fans love and hopefully Premier League clubs have now realised that and will give it their all this season. I’ve said it before and I don’t mind repeating myself – a day out at Wembley is always a great occasion for club fans, so let’s hope Arsene Wenger can steer the Arsenal there in May.
As for the Man of the Match nominees, well there were a number of contenders in my opinion. Aaron Ramsey put in a good performance, Johan Djourou again looked solid playing alongside William Gallas and Robin van Persie looked on top form, making the most of his chances for once to take his goals tally for the season to 12 (one ahead of Emmanuel Adebayor).
And I also have to praise Kieran Gibbs who played for the last hour after Mikael Silvestre picked up an injury. In Gibbs it looks as if we have a ready-made, home-grown deputy for Gael Clichy.
While we’re on the subject of Saturday’s game, I have to say that Le Gaffer’s persistence in playing Nicklas Bendtner perplexes me. Wenger has said that we should give big Nick some time to prove himself, but the more I see of the Danish youngster, the less convinced I become and the way he claimed Arsenal’s second goal at the weekend – an own goal by David Gray – has done little to win me over.
Anyway, some of you will no doubt see things differently, so click on the ‘read more’ link below to access our poll and get voting and if you feel the urge to share your opinion, feel free to use our comments section.