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Valencia Back for Arsenal Game – But Nani Ruled Out

Antonio Valencia Antonio Valencia of Manchester United in action during the UEFA Champions League Group C match between Manchester United and Rangers at Old Trafford on September 14, 2010 in Manchester, England.

It will come as no surprise that Nani will miss the Arsenal game on the weekend after the horrible tackle that he was the victim of which left him with a gaping wound on his shin. Apparently, the injury was worse than originally expected, and the Portuguese’s injury swelled up so much, that they couldn’t stitch it up to close the wound. This means that the influential creative spark in United’s average midfield may be out for up to a month rather than a few games.

That bad news is countered with the report from the Daily Mail which claim that Antonio Valencia, who, as I’m sure everyone is sick of hearing, broke his leg against Rangers (terrible game) over half a year ago, “is likely to be in Manchester United’s squad to face Arsenal”.

This is of course fantastic news, and the strikers will be delighted that Valencia could be back to deliver some sumptuous balls into the box for their predatorial instincts to strike home. He was left out of Wednesday’s reserve game against Blackpool in which he was expected to play, as apparently, United didn’t want to risk him on such a bad quality pitch. On Monday Valencia played a 30 minute a half game for the youth team.

I’m quite worried however about United’s midfield to play against Arsenal. It doesn’t sound like Valencia will start, and Nani and Park are out, laving only Giggs as the natural winger. He wouldn’t threaten the opposition with his speed, while Fletcher who could play on the right isn’t the most adventurous of attackers anyway. Rooney may play on the wing, and Hernandez and/or Berbatov starting up top.

Surely United can’t lose three in a row? Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere hopes so – even off the back of the beating they got from Barcelona:

“We know Manchester United are a great team, but they have a European game next week, so they might play a weakened side, then we can go there and take advantage of that.”

Meanwhile, Sir Alex Ferguson broke his media silence with this:

“Last season they (Arsenal) faded around the February to March period to leave Chelsea and ourselves in a two-horse race that saw us pipped at the post by a point.

“I think most pundits expected to see something similar this season, plus a challenge from Spurs and Manchester City to make it even more difficult for Arsenal to get back up to the top.

“But Arsene Wenger and his players have rearranged the pecking order somewhat to come storming through to lie in second place.

“Clearly they represent the main danger to us achieving our ambitions in a revival of the rivalry of a few years ago, and I am sure they regard us as the major threat to their hopes.”

He had no excuses for the abysmal display at Liverpool in which United lost 3 – 1. Manchester United will be hoping for the good of their season and their teams morale, that the depressingly bad performance at Liverpool is not repeated against Arsenal this weekend.

Tell me what you think!

Submitted by DBSFootball

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