Despite speculation that a pioneering surgical technique using an internal brace could help Theo Walcott recover within four months, after he ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee against Tottenham on Saturday, the Arsenal and England player is out for the rest of the season and realistically speaking won’t be traveling to Brazil for the World Cup.
Walcott’s injury came towards the end of a crucial FA Cup win, in which he again demonstrated his value to the Gooners as a stand-in striker, and at the moment when his standing amongst the North London fans has reached an all-time high.
For Arsene Wenger, the search for a striker now has even greater importance, and where he spends his money may be decisive in whether Arsenal’s title challenge can
Arsenal's 2-1 victory against Newcastle United puts the team into the record books as the first team to win four games in a row in the Premier League from a losing position.
The run began with a 90th minute winner from Thierry Henry after the Gunners had fallen behind to Sunderland, continued through the 5-2 victory against Spurs, a 90th minute winner by Robin Van Persie at Anfield and was capped by a last minute goal against Newcastle by central defender Thomas Vermaelen.
Arsenal are now just a singe point behind Tottenham and look a good bet to claim third place, as man-of-the match Theo Walcott opined:
"The way you finish, that's what's important."
Thius week's Premier League goal of the week (and contender for goal of the season) is of course Robin Van Persie’s late winner for Arsenal at Liverpool.
- The Footballer of the Year-elect made Liverpool pay for their own profligacy in front of goal at Anfield when he snatched victory for the Gunners with an expertly struck side-foot volley from Alex Song's cross from a narrow angle in the second of eight minutes of added time.
- It was his 25th goal of the Premier League season and the tenth winning goal.
- It was reminiscent of his stunning strike against Everton earlier in the season and was gleefully hailed by manager Arsene Wenger:
“When you see the ball landing at the feet of Van Persie you know he can deliver a special goal. He did
This week's performance of the week was Arsenal’s 5-2 demolition of Tottenham Hotspur.
Following the defeat to Milan in the Champions League and FA Cup exit at Sunderland, Arsenal’s season was in danger of imploding as they trailed their North London rivals by two goals on home soil after little more than half-an-hour.
In this, their 150th league meeting, Tottenham Hotspur looked like increasing their chances of finishing above their hosts for the first time since 1995 when former Gunner Emmanuel Adebayor became only the second player after Jimmy Robertson to score for both teams in derby matches.
Indeed, Spurs fans were looking forward to back-to-back league wins at the home of the Gunners for the first time since 1926.
Release the Ox!
Our Premier League performance of the week goes to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain for his superlative performance against Blackburn Rovers.
Despite a 7-1 victory, another Robin Van Persie hat-trick and Thierry Henry’s first Premier League goal back in Arsenal colours, it was the performance of the former Southampton youngster that caught most eyes and many of the headlines
With his first goals in the competition, the son of ex-England winger Mark Chamberlain became the second youngest goalscorer for Arsenal in the Premier League at 18 years and 173 days behind Cesc Fabregas (17 years, 113 days).
AOC also become the youngest player to score two goals in a Premier League game since Wayne Rooney (18 years and 120 days)
This week's prestigious goal of the week goes to Arsenal’s marvellous Robin Van Persie for his strike against Everton.
On the day the club celebrated its 125th anniversary, the Gunners celebrated their famous mantra of one-nil to the Arsenal in glorious fashion.
The goal came out of nothing against a stubborn Everton rearguard. From Alex Song’s clever chip, after the ball came across his body, goal-machine Van Persie scored with a sumptuous left-foot volley.
The modern day legend brought a host of Arsenal legends to their feet in stunned appreciation.
It was Van Persie’s 33rd Premier League goal of the year, leaving him one behind the club record held by Thierry Henry.
Robin Van Persie (Arsenal)
- In his match programme notes, the Arsenal captain committed his future to the club... although he has appeared reluctant to extend his contract.
- Nervous team needed good start and got it with RVP’s opener after 29 seconds (the quickest in the Premier League since Geovanni for Manchester City v Wigan Athletic in 2007).
- Inspired a scintillating first half-hour which was much more like the good old Arsenal.
- RVP almost doubled the lead with a Bergkampesque-like effort that was a goalpost’s thickness away from being a Goal of the Season contender.
- When it looked like Arsenal would have to settle for a disappointing draw, he produced a match-winning inch-perfect free-kick.
- Arguably the player of
Premier League previews for Sunday 28 August:
Manchester United & Arsenal
This will be the 46th time that managers Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson have met in Arsenal v United encounters. In all competitions, Sir Alex has won 19 games to Arsene's 15, with 11 drawn (excluding penalty shoot-outs).Manchester United have won 21 of their last 22 Premier League games at Old Trafford.Arsenal have won only two of their 13 Premier League games.
Newcastle United & Fulham
Fulham have lost only one of their last six visits to Newcastle United (all Premier League).Opposition players have been sent-off in three of Newcastle United’s last five Premier League games.Currently standing on 99 losses, Fulham will be trying not to become