There have been doubts over the years about Arsène Wenger’s commitment to the FA Cup.
Certainly his decision to virtually throw the game last season against Manchester United was foolhardy, denting morale and ending one avenue to silverware that might have removed the rod from his back about a lack of success.
His record of four FA Cup wins is also up there with the best.
But next week’s tie against Cardiff City has come at just the right time for the Gunners.
It gives Wenger a chance to expose Eduardo to a starting berth, which after his appearance for Croatia tomorrow, will get him closer to full fitness.
With Manu Adebayor injured, it also timely that Eduardo, who is probably a better player all told, can get a run out.
It’s a shame Andrey Arshavin can’t play after not featuring in the first game, but with Manu Eboue suspended and Gael Clichy a doubt after that head injury against T*tt*nh*m, it’s the perfect time to play a lower division side, even one who is currently in good form.
Whether or not Cesc Fabregas’s assertion that he is only a few weeks away from returning, and notwithstanding the chances of Tomas Rosicky making a return before the end of the season, it gives Theo Walcott an extra fortnight to get fit – and how we need him!
Arshavin will probably be put through his paces in training as well, and this is the first time in the Wenger era when we have really struggled for goals, so his arrival is vital.
Who knows where we would now be if it wasn’t for the form of Robin van Persie?
But the Dutchman is not an out and out goalscorer and the return of Eduardo and Arshavin will hopefully take some pressure off his striking responsibilities.
With Fulham, Sunderland and West Brom coming up, we HAVE to seek nine points because the teams above us will slip up.
We’re running out of games, but I am still confident that we can start taking teams apart in the way Wenger knows best.
Three games without a win or 11 unbeaten. Whichever way you see it, there are plenty of twists and turns to happen in the Premier League yet this season.
Believe Gooners....there is still hope.