Arsenal may need to hand out photos to all the stewards and some of the players ahead of training on Tuesday, other wise Abou Diaby could be thrown off the site. The tall Frenchman has been away from a football pitch for so long that people could be forgiven for forgetting what he looks like. But the player who even Arsene Wenger thought might never play again is set to start training again On April 1st.
With all the problems that Arsenal have had to cope with this season, with lengthy spells on the sidelines for Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere, Mesut Ozil, the Ox and more, it is easy to forget that the Gunners also have the French international midfielder on the treatment table, but maybe not for much longer.
A Sky Sports report reveals that Diaby has been in France undergoing a steady but strenuous regime to get him back to fitness and the 27-year old has told the French media that he is hoping to be back in training with his Arsenal teammates soon. And that could mean that Diaby would be able to play for Arsenal for the first time since March of last year against Swansea.
Arsenal are back on top of the league. Not the Premier League, at least not yet, but the league of injuries updated regularly on physioroom.com. We have been there for most of the season as well, just like the Premier League but have been off the top for the last few weeks. Hopefully the trend will continue and Arsenal will finish the weekend on top of both.
Are Arsenal really that unlucky? by Blaz
It has been a widespread consensus amongst Arsenal fans that we are by far the most unluckiest team when it comes to injuries, and complaining about our misfortune become very popular in the last couple of weeks. We did have a few players out, lost Theo permanently, while Diaby won’t play this season at all (no change there!). There have been a few articles saying we are the most miserable team when it comes to injuries this season. It might seem like truth – Gibbs just gets back, Monreal goes out, Ox returns, Theo goes missing, Özil fixes his shoulder and Rosicky gets his nose broken..
Arsenal just have to get over the hurdle of Tottenham in the FA cup and then the players have a bit of a rest. All the other games in January look nice as well, with Aston Villa, Fulham and Southampton. But there is real concern about the amount of Gunners who are unavailable due to injury.
Should Arsenal cut their losses? by Ricardo
Hello Gunners. We are all probably saturated in a large quantity of excitement at the moment. For those who are not getting part of the cake, get a knife and cut through it and you could get a reasonable share of it yourself. The feeling at the Emirates and all over the world amongst the Arsenal faithful has never been better. Everyone is happy.
Why shouldn’t we be? We have a great squad (including the talented Mesut Ozil), we are playing good football…some of the best we’ve seen in years, we are top of the Premier League and top of our Champions League group. Unbelievable really! That is why I say ‘everyone is happy’…well not “everyone”!
Having played over 450 games for Arsenal between 1992 and 2004 at the heart of midfield, Ray Parlour is as qualified as anyone to assess the current crop of Gunners. And `the Romford Pele` likes what he is seeing, and feels that there is plenty of strength in depth as well as talent to fire the Gunners to a strong season.
Parlour won three league titles, four FA cups and one league cup with Arsenal, so it must be as painful for him as it is for us to see eight long years of trophy drought. Now, however, with the signings of Mesut Ozil and Mathieu Flamini, as well as the resurgence of Aaron Ramsey, the former Gunner is even comparing us to Barcelona.
Will Diaby ever be a first team regular? by Rory
QArsenal are currently dripping with top midfield talent. Ozil, Cazorla, Ramsey, Wilshere, Arteta, Flamini and Rosicky. These are all top notch central midfielders at the club, with perhaps Rosicky and Arteta approaching their career’s end, probably not this season but perhaps the end of the next one.
But that still leaves our youthful Ozil, Wilshere and Ramsey as well as Cazorla who will not have faded at all, and the magnificent Flamini who is not yet 30.
As you may know, the mighty Arsenal are happily sitting on top of the Premier League and leading in the Champions League group ahead of Borussia Dortmund, Napoli and Marseille. There is another table we are leading, and have been doing since the season started, but this one is not so good. The Gunners are top of the league’s injury list, but there are some players very close to a return to action.
Mikel Arteta is a great Arsenal vice-captain. His cool head is a huge asset both on a and off the pitch. He is also a great role model for the other players in the squad, so they will listen to him when he says things, and amidst the growing excitement and confidence, his voice or reason could be useful in keeping everybody’s feet on the ground.
Not only do Arsenal have a very effective and confident first team, who have fired the Gunners to the dizzy heights of the top of the Premier League, but there are some real top quality players in the treatment room. The good news is that Arsenal seem to have gotten over the worst of the injury crisis, which had nine players out at one point.
The France international and Arsenal midfielder is one of the unluckiest footballers in recent memory. He has got the sort of luck that would make it worth your while taking him to a casino, sitting him at the Roulette wheel and getting him to play red or black, so you could play the opposite and win.
It is easy to forget just how bad his injuries have been, because it seems constant, but this graphic by Talksport gives a shocking reminder of the number of different problems the 27-year old Frenchman has had to deal with. One part of the player that has never broken in all that time, however, is his spirit.