Without wishing to belittle the competition, I throw my hands in the air at the delight of Alex Song returning to the Arsenal sooner rather than later after whoever he plays for on an international level lost to another inconsequential side in a pointless cup for which no-one apart from Angolan rebels gives a shit.
And so to this morning’s Daily Mail, which rerminds us our hero is heading for the plane back to Blighty. It reports that Cameroon’s early exit will be welcomed by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger since holding midfielder Song may now be available for the Gunners’ crucial run of league matches against Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool.
You don’t say.
And with Arsenal headlines thin on the ground this morning, let’s give some Stoke no-mark a chance to air his views to the great and the good who follow arsenalinsider.com. The Sun carries a (thankfully) brief story from someone called Mama Sidebe (got the name of an Angolan brothel madam, that one) who reckons ‘Stoke know how to get under Arsenal’s skin – and dent their title hopes’.
The paper says he helped dumpus out of the FA Cup on Sunday and reminds us that we have to go back for more of the same in the league next month. Sidibe said: “We know Arsenal don’t like it when you put too much pressure on them. We can beat anyone at the Britannia and that makes it easier for us. What we did was not to let them keep the ball too much.
“It’s always hard to play against them. They made changes but Arsenal are not a first and second team – all their players are very good and can pass the ball well.” How astute, Mr Sidebe.
Away from the glorious Gunners for a split second and when I saw this headline ‘Juventus bid to poach Benitez’ in the Mirror I thought to myself…surely lightly boiled would suffice. Moving on,  and elsewhere in the Mirror says AW has admitted to having major doubts over William Gallas’ fitness.
Gallas has been nursing a back injury and has been struggling to get through games and that is a major concern for Arsenal’s title run-in. AW says that 32-year-old Gallas has had to play through the pain barrier to finish some of Arsenal’s games, and that was a major factor in his decision to re-sign veteran Sol Campbell.
Wenger said: “Touch wood, until now he (Gallas) has been clear of injuries. But we have played him on the limit a few times where we didn’t know before the game how long he would last. He always manages to get through the 90 minutes. Gallas has played all the Premier League games. Once you are in a routine, winning keeps the confidence high. You have to rotate. You cannot always play with the same XI until the end of the season. That doesn’t work.”
And the same paper reminds us (although I would prefer not to reminded, actually as he is not good enough) that Vito Mannone has signed a new long-term contract – and immediately set his sights on becoming the Gunners’ No.1.
The paper says that Italian Mannone, 21, got an extended run in the first team earlier in the season when Manuel Almunia and Lukasz Fabianski were injured and wants another crack at being first choice.
Mannone said: “Every day when I go on the training pitch I try to show everyone that I’m the best. It’s normal – every goalkeeper does that. I’m not working for nothing,
I’m working to achieve something. I know I have time on my side and am very young, so it’s good for me that Arsenal and the manager believe in me. I will try to become the No.1 as soon as possible.”
God help us…Almunia, Fabianksi and now him…then again, AW has never been the best at finding keepers, as he?

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