Forget signings - let's focus on Everton

By Avenell Dave

Less than a week to go until the real business starts again and still everyone is focusing on who Arséne Wenger is going to sign and when.

Yes – we know we could do with two or three new faces.

Yes – we know that money is tight at Arsenal.

Yes – we know that Wenger will continue to tell everyone that he believes in the team, the squad, but he has to do that, doesn’t he?

But as we’ve already worked out from Wenger’s declarations, if any new players are to arrive – and the team is crying out for some experience and defensive cover – those faces are going to arrive right at the end of the transfer window.

Yes, Barcelona are circling again for Cesc Fabregas but Addict has it on good authority that El Capitano is going nowhere this summer, despite some pretty advanced talks with teams earlier on in the close season.

So now what we have to do is focus on Everton.

The team who have come fifth in each of the last two seasons seem to have been forgotten by the pundits as a serious threat to the Big Four and maybe rightly so given the signings by Man City and Aston Villa.

But even so, they’re still a formidable outfit and a team we did well to draw against last season at Goodison Park.

Even without Mikel Arteta, Yakubu and Phil Jagielka, Everton have the players capable of causing us some problems – Tim Cahill is a particularly tricky opponent – and it says much about where the Gunners are at that I would take a draw right now.

Without a huge amount of time for Wenger to work with his players this week, the international calendar once again seems to be determined without any thought for the importance of the domestic game.

There will be time later in the week to speculate about who should or shouldn’t play on Saturday evening, but for now, let’s just hope our internationals come back injury free because bitter experience suggests we will end up with one or two players on the treatment table by Thursday morning.