Sep 19

Should Wenger field a full-strength team against Spurs?

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will again use the Carling Cup to give the world a glimpse of the club’s future by blooding his youngsters. The competition has been used by the Frenchman in the past to educate the likes of Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere on the demands of first-team football.

The Gunners’ youngsters have certainly excelled in the past but face stiff competition in the third round in the form of arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

Jay-Emmanuel Thomas, Henri Lansbury, Craig Eastmond and Kieran Gibbs are just a select few who are expected to be involved in Tuesday’s tie, although Arsenal striker Marouane Chamakh has revealed that he could be in for a surprise start.

“With the ­injuries we have, it might be I’ll play. If the coach wants me to, I’ll do so willingly,” Chamakh told Mirror Football.

“I know what the match with Tottenham means to the players and to the fans.

“It is very important to win. I am happy to play and ready to play if I am selected. And I know it will be a tough game. Tottenham have some very good players like ­William ­Gallas, Sebastien Bassong and Benoit Assou-Ekotto.”

However, many Gooners have suggested that fielding a weakened side at White Hart Lane will play into the hands of Spurs manager Harry Redknapp, who is expected to start with a mix of fringe players and senior stars.

What kind of team do you want to see Arsenal start with on Tuesday? Should Wenger rest the first teamers and blood the new breed of young talent? Or should he field a full strength side due to the nature of the game?

Leave your views by voting in the poll and commenting in the discussion section below.

[poll id=”10″]


61 Responses to “Should Wenger field a full-strength team against Spurs?”

  1. Bala says:

    Eboue Djourou Miquel Gibbs

    Lansbury Eastmond Wilshere(Or)Rosicky

    Afobe JET Vela

  2. athlon says:

    I hope, Nordtveit will play. And I think we should give up the Carling cup insted of risk to lose other players…

  3. REDgoon says:

    Play the reserves.

  4. Dave (Spurs Fan) says:

    Harry wont start with his strongest line up by any means I dont think. He’s already talked about Sando and a few others getting a chance.

    I dont think either team will have strong teams or be that bothered about the 1st round of the carling cup, and rightly so, there are already too many games to cope with.

  5. VanDaManPersie says:

    Nordveit is still injured

  6. billy says:

    why bother with a full squad when there is european competition a week after.. also the cup means nothing to arsenal.. so what if they get beat they have more important things to do

  7. frankie frankie says:

    i think he should but he wont so i am sure we will loose. happy to get this game out of the way. and move on to the league aand champs league. Even if spuds play a weakend team it wont be as weak as ours. so spurs fans can start their gloating now and get it over and done with.

  8. Bala says:

    Nortdveit and Henderson are injured and I think we should mix it up with youth and Experience so that even if we lose it should’t be a thrashing,but I want us to win it and win it convincingly

  9. KP says:

    Spurs will play their reserve team, but it’s very strong looking: –
    GK Pletikosa
    RB Hutton
    DC Gallas or Corluka and Bassong
    LB Naughton, Bale or Assou Ekotto
    RM Bentley
    MC Sandro and Palacios
    LM Kranjcar
    AC Giovani and Pavlyuchenko

  10. Eduardo says:

    I expect wenger will rightly keep to his policy of using subs from previous game- those that did not play long- and adding in best of reserves. So i think we will see fabianski nordtveit djourou miguel gibbs denilson lansbury eastmond eboue emmanuel-thomas vela. subs szczseny evina hoyte randall aneke afobe murphy. Aneke may get game ahead of eastmond

  11. David says:

    Is it me, or has the ‘qualiy’ of our league cup side diminished in the past two years or so? Look at the starting 11 that played Newcastle three years back – that team portrayed how strong the overall squad was and all the kids back then had to make do with a place on the bench. Even though the team at AW picks on Tuesday will be extremely talented, it will pale in comparison compared to previous Arsenal league cup sides if we are being honest.

  12. Arsenalisto says:


    Eboue Squill/Nordveit Djurou Gibbs

    Rosicky Denilson Eastmond/Coquelin*

    Watt/Jet Vela

    *Eastmond has probably been turned into a defender not a CDM anymore but he still can play there, if not Coquelin.

  13. Swagger says:

    Who cares about the carling cup. They can play coaches if they want. I won’t celebrate if we win the carling cup.

  14. Judith Le'Strange says:

    All the previous responses say Redknapp won’t play his strongest team, but from what I’ve seen of names brandied about it looks quite a decent team, but Wenger will only play the youngsters and unless we have a strong defence line and goalkeeper I can see us going out. We need a good striker but who have we go that’s not injured?

  15. Goonergaz says:

    How could we possibly play a full strength side when that has not been available for over 3 seasons

  16. Moiz says:

    Wenger should play this line up.
    GK Wojciech Szczesny
    RB Eboue
    DC Djourou
    DC Sebastian Squillaci
    LB Gibbs
    AMR Jay Emmanuel-Thomas
    MC Wilshere
    DMC Denilson
    MC Henri Lansbury
    AML Vela
    FC Chamakh

  17. Arsenalisto says:

    @David: A lot of them have been promoted to first team except for Merida who left us this summer.

  18. Mika is a goon!! says:

    I’ll bet u goalie will be Vito manone or fabianski….

  19. Stratty says:

    This is all a very pleasant exchange just days b4 a North London Derby. I guess it’s almost a friendly. And the article is mistaken, Harry was interviewed by Auntie on Saturday, and said that he would use it as a chance to give players who have not featured recently a chance. Sandro will be in… I presume that he has not mis-pronounced his wife’s name, and he means our recent requisition from Internacional. But if I’m mistaken, it would indicative of how seriously he is taking the game, that is to say – it’s just a kick in the park.

  20. young says:

    The senior squad is thin on the ground,any more injuries will spell disaster for the season. The injury factor has never been covered properly,even the next season coming,an uphill struggle is expected by all but the decision maker.

  21. lodvic says:

    Won feck all for 6 years!

    You should field your strongest team, bribe the ref, sort out some poisoned lunch, draw up a page of excuses, get your manager floating out some excuses now (it’s too tough, people kick us), get the old “select-O-vision” powered up after all don’t want to accidentally see some hideous thing your own players do, Fire up the stat-O-meter so the you can claim that even after losing 5-1 that the stats showed you won (in all but score line), Say a little prayer “please God, don’t let Harry pick his first team, well at least no Bale” and thank your lucky stars that Rose has gone out on loan.

    Do all of these things because you’ve won nothing, nada, zip, zilch for 6 years….. I personally would not be happy at finishing in the top 4 and never winning anything…..Oh the joy and ecstasy of not quite being good enough AGAIN!

    P.S. I don’t support Tottenham (although I quite like them), I just hate the arrogance of the Arsenal faithful and there hypocritical manager (he wasn’t whinging about tackles when Viera was getting sent off 10 times whilst playing under him).

  22. Baruch says:

    its ok to play our second team, but not our 3rd team.
    players like fabiansky, eboue, gibbs, nordviet, djourou, denilson, vela, rosicky should play. The rest should be a mixture of some young players (not more than 2) and first team players like Wilkshire, Konscheisky and perhaps chamakh.

  23. Abhijeet Sanghvi says:

    Hey guys….we shouldn’t underestimate our team….even if we play our reserves we still have a decent chance of winning the match….remember last your our near reserve team beat a full strength liverpool and that too at anfield….

  24. Yidinpeace says:

    Very pleasantly surprised at the fact there is not one fan from either of our teams doing the age old fan blog goading of “spurs are s**t, we’ll win with kids” or “mickey mouse cup etc” or indeed the “wenger is a child botherer” stuff like in those animations with the talking bears…

    anyway, all pleasantries aside i just hope its a good game and whoever wins does so with no controversy. All my mates are gooners, so i’m well used to getting ribbings over the years. I just dont want another one!

    May the best team on the night win! also, would be nice to meet in the knockout stages of the CL….IF we make it there – as I’m sure you guys will.

  25. Gooner! says:

    I bet u fabianski or mannone will be in goals!!!

  26. mr. arsenal says:

    i say a mix because letting them all play in a match theyll get battered in is nt good

  27. Rob67Spurs says:

    Yes Arse should field a strong side, 4200 Arse fans have spent good money on watching their team, it doesnt matter what the comp is we both still want to put one over the other. But I imagine with a smaller genuine 1st team squad Arse will field 5-6 1st team players mixed with 5-6 youth team players.
    But where Spurs will also only field 5-6 of the team starting against Wolves, we will bring in the likes of Bentley, Pavlyuchenko, Bassong, Hutton, Dos Santos, Kranjcar, all full internationals. It should make the difference and a comfortable Spurs win.
    If you think the match is irrelavant, all I will say is a run to the final banks around 10 million pounds, not to be sniffed at in the current economic climate, and a good day out at Wembley for us fans.

  28. Arsenalisto says:

    @Stratty: Stratty lol first of all what are you doing in the gooners blog?? & hopefully Wenger will put a mixed team just to make sure we go through so that we will stay on track on the mission of winning the Quadruple this season and to make sure that you spuds don’t get a chance in the only competition you have a chance of progressing at.

  29. knug says:

    Eboue – Djourou – Nortveit – Gibbs
    Lansbury – Eastmond – Denilson
    JET – Afobe – Vela

  30. Foggy (Tottenham) says:

    All teams should take the possibility of winning silverware seriously,whether it be Premier League,Champions League or League cup,as winning breads a positive mentality which then aids your future chances of more success.

    For me then Arsene should if he wishes to blood his younger players at least add a sprinkling of experience through the spine of the team,just to give it that extra chance if things start to go bad and you need maturity to pick the side up.

    I for one look forward to seeing how Sandro adapts to his new Tottenham career and I also have a feeling that we might see one of our younger talents Harry Kane take some part in proceedings as he was omitted from the recent under eighteens win over rivals Chelsea.

    Anyhow,may the best team win.

  31. zalp says:

    no i dont think that is true, the youngsters back then were just the same as the current ones, you probably have that impression because many of those carling cup youngsters are now first team regulars which gives the impression that it was a strong team, but they were just youngsters back then!!

  32. Yidinpeace says:

    spoke too soon…

  33. Gooner R says:

    Bumped into a former team-mate after the braga game who is in the reserves/ u18s at arsenal (nico Yennaris) and he suggested wenger was going to play a stronger than normal team because it is a derby game

  34. Stratty says:

    @Arsenalisto It got picked up on Newsnow Tottenham. And good effort on trying to raise the temperature, but I just can’t be arsed with the game. I think it’s going to be reserve team v reserve team. Maybe Danny Rose will get a shout?

  35. Sam says:

    Some gooners posting here need to wake up: Nortdveit is injured and Coquelin is out on loan!

    I reckon this is how we’ll start:


    Not too sure about our midfield, can’t see us winning this one.

  36. Penancio gunner says:

    eboue djourou squillaci gibbs
    lansbury eastmond aneke
    afobe jet Vela

  37. suvit says:

    i think , AW should mix it up ………. because it is against our arch rival, so , hope he will not field the weaker team. I want to see fabianski, eboue, squillaci, any youngster, gibbs, wilshere, denilson,eastmond, vela,some promising forwards…… in arsene I trust….

  38. rich g says:

    have to laugh at the deluded gooners…this is the only competition spurs can progress in…lol, we are getting closer to u pond scum all the time, to hear u deluded idiots talk ud think arse have won the CL 3 times back to back and recently won our league, arsenal, are a club on the slide, and thats a fact

  39. Sean says:


    Eboue Djourou Squillaci Gibbs

    Denilson Eastmond Rosicky

    Lansbury Vela Emmanuel-Thomas

    Bench: Mannone, Hoyte, Miquel, Randall, Aneke, Afobe, Arshavin

    Arshavin for the last 15 mins! If we are getting thrashed I would also get Aneke and Afobe on just for the hell of it

  40. Stoney says:

    Spurs will win whatever team you put out… And win convincingly.

  41. Matt says:

    Well looking at the way we gave the game up against sunderland i think we should field the strongest side possible, the way Spurs play free flowing football, bale making blinding runs down the left flank and Van Der Vaart Master class going on we will take a spanking like last season..

  42. The Left Hand Of HENRY says:

    does anyone else h8 man citeh, united and chelsea more than spurs

  43. bc says:

    Eboue Djourou Vermaelen Gibbs
    Eastmond Song Denilson
    JET Chamakh Vela

    S: Mannone, Nordveit or Hoyte, Cruise, Randall, Lansbury, Aneke, Afobe

  44. chris says:

    silly spuds, a miraculous win over us and they’ll be foaming at the mouth saying they off to the champions league final next..

  45. Nicgooner says:

    Maybe it would be a mixed team I think that the line-up would be like this: Fabianski, eboue, squillaci, djourou, Gibbs, nasri/fabregas, denilson, wilshere, rosicky, chamakh, vela. What do you think?

  46. Arsenalisto says:

    @Stratty: Stratty I see that you know as much psychology as FAT Sam Allardyce knows lol. Anyway let’s see how Ms. Rose measures up to our young talents :)

  47. Arsenalisto says:

    @Foggy (Tottenham): Couldn’t agree more with the bit about taking all competitions seriously coz in the past few seasons, we have seen our team doing so great and all of the sudden they get knocked out of all competitions one after the other. Heavy defeats/exits vs light ones make a difference too, certainly the 5-1 and 4-0 in 07-08 were the reason for the league meltdown, certainly the made it really tough when added to injuries, bad luck/refs..etc.

  48. Acton_Yid says:

    I really hope Gibbs plays…he is sh*te. I remember when he played at the Lane a few seasons ago and Lennon absolutely ripped him to pieces. And no, he hasn’t improved since then ! Bring it on…whoever the Gooners field !

  49. Bob John says:

    Song must play if not suspended. Possibly at centre back. No way can Chamakh play. If he gets injured we’re completely shafted up front!

  50. venky says:

    Eboue Djourou Nordveit Gibbs
    Denilson Aneke Lansbury
    Roscisky JET vela

  51. allglory says:

    Got to, its our cup final these days. See on the croydon train duckies.

  52. pastaface says:

    When we do well hardly any one comments and when we have a blip we have loads of comments?

  53. Spurs147 says:

    This article has popped up on Spurs NewsNow, so either everyone’s behaving themselves, or the moderators are working overtime to delete the back-and-forth moronic comments (well done chaps!) In any case, it’s a refreshing change.

    Maybe it’s just because neither club are going to lose too much sleep over the result of this one. Could this be the least-anticipated north London derby in history? Quite possibly… It seems both clubs have bigger fish to fry this season.

  54. Arsenalisto says:

    @pastaface: So true pastaface lol

  55. arsenal fan says:

    we must play the full strength team, this is the only cup we will have a chance in winning this year

  56. Seniamor says:

    I Think we should go with a mix of experience(not the old lads) and youth. Here goes my lineup:
    Eboue/Hoyte Djourou Nordtveit Gibbs
    Eastmond Denilson/Wilshere
    Nasri Vela

  57. vijay says:

    The team I’d like (but won’t be):

    Nordtveit, Squillaci, Koscielny, Gibbs
    Wilshere, Denilson, Aneke
    JET, Afobe, Vela

    The team he should put out:

    Nordtveit, Squillaci, Djourou, Gibbs
    Wilshere, Eastmond, Aneke
    JET, Afobe, Deacon

    The team he’ll probably put out:

    Eboue, Squillaci, Djourou, Gibbs
    Wilshere, Eastmond, Aneke
    JET, Chamakh, Vela

    The three players I’d be fearful of him including: Randall (not even as good as Pennant/Bentley), Lansbury (too easily overawed), and Henderson (simply not ready to step up).

    NOTES: I’d even think about playing Ignasi Miquel instead of Djourou alongside Squillaci and make him captain to boot.

    I hate the idea of Fabianski taking Szczesny’s place in the side.

    He’ll play Djourou even though JD’s been dreadful so far this season in the reserves.

    He might play Denilson instead of Eastmond for fitness reasons.

    Truthfully, what’s Chamakh even thinking about playing for … if he gets injured we’re stuffed. Afobe should play alongside JET and Vela.

    There’s no point playing Nordtveit in central defence if his best position is at right back.

    Should be an interesting game – unless we lose, of course – then it’ll be nothing short of syphilitic.

  58. Highbury4L says:

    I don’t know, we really need a trophy but I don’t think we want the League Cup do we, the F.A. Cup is quite decent, wouldn’t mind stacking that in the cuboard. I just don’t think the Carling Cup is something that will get Fabregas and any other players wanting to leave interested in staying at the end of the season.

    although, we are not going to win anything without a full strength team and these injuries are going to be our downfall as they always have been

  59. Me says:

    I just hope Denilson and Clichy won’t play cause I really can’t stand them anymore. Every time one of them gets the ball or needs some little defending to do I get nervous ’cause I know what to expect.

  60. Menace says:

    In my opinion – always. We should never ever lose to the spuds in anything including tiddlewinks!!

    This match may be Carling cup but it is against the shite from the lane. The next leg can revert to kids but this match is street cred.

  61. says:

    hear we go again. Injuries, dropping points. didnt take long. I dont mean to sound like a cynic. But i get just shudder when players like Denilson make statements like “I’m confident we can win the title” on the Arsenal website. Its like the spuds spouting s**t about how great they think they then it all come crumbling down. Im sorry ive been a gooner since 1984 and this season is Chavskis to lose. The best we can hope for is United to explode and we have our second place ladies and gentlemen. Woulnt expect anything else.
    (this is where some deluded smart arse now replies that i should have faith and the title is ours. And i really hope im proved wrong. But ive seen this too many times. I love Arsenal football club. I never miss a game when a game like braga comes along like last week. It makes me relise why i love them so much. But we have to be realistic. Dont we?)


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