Arsenal boss Wenger wrong to drop Mertesacker for Chelsea clash

Sharethematch.com takes a look at how Arsenal missed the presence of centre-half Per Mertesacker against Chelsea

Per Mertesacker
Per Mertesacker joined Arsenal from Werder Bremen last summer Photo: Steindy

Per Mertesacker

Mertesacker was missed against Chelsea

After Arsenal suffered their first Premier League defeat of the season at home to Chelsea, the question needs to be asked – why did Arsene Wenger drop Per Mertesacker?

The Germany internatonal struggled last season but he has started the current campaign in good form and was at the heart of Arsenal’s defensive resurgence.

But after having another solid performance at the Etihad last weekend as the Gunners claimed a very respectable point, Mertesacker was left out of the side to face the Blues in favour of Laurent Koscielny.

Yes, the Frenchman scored a belter of a goal to equalise against City but how does that justify dropping Mertesacker?

Koscielny had a shocker at The Emirates, losing Fernando Torres for the first goal before guiding Juan Mata’s second-half free kick past Vito Mannone for Chelsea’s second.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but Wenger should know better than to mess with a winning formula – and Mertesacker should have been lining up against the Blues.

Instead Arsenal have now lost their early-season momentum and the claims that they could challenge for the title will certainly dry up a bit now.

Time for United to cut Nani loose

Nani looks set for the Manchester United axe after reportedly coming to blows with reserve midfielder Davide Petrucci – and maybe it is time Sir Alex Ferguson finally shipped out his inconsistent winger.

A large section of United fans will tell you Nani’s regular assists are vital, and while this cannot be denied, he does not bring much else to the table.

For too often in his United career the Portuguese has been infuriatingly hit and miss, but to be fair to him, his poorer games usually come when he is played on his less-favoured left wing.

Nani had a blinding run on the right in the absence of Antonio Valencia two seasons ago, getting voted United’s Players’ Player of the Season despite giving up his place for the last two months of the campaign when the Ecuadorian returned from his broken ankle.

But the form of Valencia means Nani is going to have to play on the left – and all signs suggest he is not good enough out there.

Time and time again he gets down the byline but instead of whipping in an instant cross like Valencia, he dithers before cutting onto his right foot and blasting the ball high and wide.

It might be time to bite the bullet and sacrifice Nani’s assists by shipping him out in January for a more natural left-sided player.

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