Arsenal - Wenger Welcomes Back Key Midfielder
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Wenger Welcomes Back Key Midfielder

It`s safe to say that before his injury at Christmas Aaron Ramsey was not only the top performer at Arsenal this season, but the stand out player in the whole league.

Rambo really discovered his shooting boots this season bagging 13 goals in 27 appearances, which is more than he scored in his other fives seasons at the club combined.

However this ill-timed injury kept him out for a lot longer than anticipated and really put a dampener on Arsenal`s creative output.

Arsene Wenger today confirmed that Ramsey is back in full training and in contention to play against Everton on Sunday … and no, this isn`t a continuation of my poor Diaby "April Fools".

Wenger confirmed that along with Monreal, the Welshman is set to return "Aaron and Nacho Monreal are back training with the squad, so that is good news. Hopefully they will be available for Sunday. Diaby is back on the pitches, so that is good news."

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The Journalist

Writer: Rocky7 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday April 3 2014

Time: 11:09PM

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It is good news to have Ramsey back with prospects of being in the squad already, for Sunday, but it looks like a case of too little, too late. His return could provide a buzz about the team, however, which would be. Vital in the run-in. Welcome back, Rambo.
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04/04/2014 05:43:00

I'm sure he will only play for 10-15 minutes on Sunday to ease him back into it, but he can still be a key player for us in ensuring 4th is safe and winning the FA Cup. I'd love to see this kid lift that trophy!
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04/04/2014 07:44:00

Nice to have our best player in the 2013 calendar year back. He was sorely missed.
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04/04/2014 16:37:00

You and me both, rocky7! I am so happy to see the Man Of Steel back. Even if he doesn't feature on Sunday, just knowing he is fit is a big fillip.
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04/04/2014 17:32:00

Amos, hey Amos. What do you make of this from wenger in the guardian. Ramsey was in the red before he played at West Ham United on Boxing Day, the league fixture in which he suffered his thigh injury but Wenger admitted that because the player was in the form of his life, he had struggled to give him a rest. "When Ramsey got his injury we saw he was tired at West Ham, so maybe sometimes when the player is very important as well, you are tempted to play him even when he is tired," he said. But I'm sure you are still right. Ramsey wasn't run in to the ground, wasn't risked, wasn't showing fatigue. My view from my seat was deceiving. Did I say that Wenger more than likely chose to overrule advice? Never mind though, I'm sure his injury didn't affect our season.
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05/04/2014 03:13:00

I know I sound like a smug ars*, but your dismissal of what many could see was pretty annoying. I'm sure you will still find some way to dismiss this too with some absurd reasoning
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05/04/2014 03:16:00

@ paul_ownz - out of interest, does it actually say Ramsey was in the red zone? Because being tired and being in the red zone may not be the same. Rambo's not the only player who has played when tired, and AW is not the only manager who plays a tired player.
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05/04/2014 11:47:00

That's what the article says. It's in the guardian
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05/04/2014 12:00:00

Also being in the red zone is linked to tiredness and fatigue.
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05/04/2014 12:06:00

A triumphant sounding post there paul! - but I'm not sure that tells us anything we didn't already know.! Presumably Ramsey wasn't deemed too tired before being picked to play against west ham so noticing that he was tired when he was on the pitch is a bit too late to make a decision whether to play him or not. It's his condition before the game that's important. Had he been 'run into the ground' then presumably he would have been too tired to play and wouldn't have been picked. Our key players are always going to be risked to some degree. Perhaps more so as we needed a win to go top of the league. You can't always avoid that particularly as I'm guessing that for this game Wilshere, who might play that role in Ramsey's absence, was also injured as he wasn't on the bench. Maybe Southampton took a risk playing Rodriguez today, perhaps ManU took a risk playing RvP in the CL - it's kinda normal really.
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05/04/2014 15:20:00

Ha ha Amos, you must be a solicitor, MP or a Lawyer. Nothing sticks. I'm sure if Wenger came out and said we knew he was at risk for a few weeks but we took it anyway, you would still peddle out something. Back on December 2nd a few articles had the story. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is wary of Aaron Ramsey reaching the 'red zone'. Ramsey scored a brace against his old club Cardiff City on Saturday to increase his goal tally to 14 in all competitions this season. But Wenger insists he will give Ramsey a rest when the time is right. "I have to treat him like all the players and give them a breather when they need it" said Wenger. " I don't want to put too much pressure on his shoulders and we have a game that is based on team play". Sounds like a manager mindful his prize asset may be tiring or pushed?? Ramsey followed that game against Cardiff starting against Hull, Everton, coming on in Napoli, starting against City, Chelsea and West Ham within 22 days.
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05/04/2014 15:31:00

I wouldn't imagine that Ramsey was a uniquely prize asset and his comments after the Cardiff game seem more associated with his status than his fitness. Even so he did say that he takes a risk with some players. Most managers do - they have to. Good to see that Wenger took the opportunity to give Ramsey a bit of a rest against Napoli only playing him for 20 minutes. Clearly he didn't want to run him into the ground! I'm not sure what it is your attempting to prove but if it's that sometimes Arsenal take a risk with some players then I'm not sure that's any more revelatory than declaring the world is not flat.
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05/04/2014 17:12:00

My point is that if you play fatigued players you risk losing them for long periods of time, which subsequently can affect your season. The Napoli game isn't a point made well.
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06/04/2014 08:41:00

I bet there were plenty of supporters berating the decision not to start Ramsey against Napoli. It has to be a risk judgement as to how much in need of a rest a player is. There'll never be no risk and there'll be times when the decision is justified but you'll only know for sure with the benefit of hindsight. Everyone becomes a top notch physio then. Before then you've only the medical assessment and the views of the player himself to go on.
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06/04/2014 10:55:00

Amos. This was from David Hytner after the West Ham game. A well respected journalist from a well respected paper. "Podolski has sympathy for Ramsey, who spent Friday being assessed and for whom the initial prognosis looks bad. It would be a surprise if he played again before February. Ramsey is the club's only outfield player to have appeared in each of their 18 league fixtures, starting 17 of them, and Wenger knew that the 23-year-old was in the red, fitness-wise, before West Ham". Knew he was red before the West Ham game. Le grove wrote this in an article a while back about it(and I know some don't like him). "This is really basic stuff explained by a layman… but the premise is that you have core stabilisers that keep you balanced and strong when you play sport. When you tire, these weaken. When they weaken, you start to, for example, run more heavily on one side. Your body can’t distribute balance in the same way, and that’s what ‘can’ lead to a pulled hamstrings and strains. So when you see a player like Aaron, who has played pretty much all the minutes this season… Covers the most ground in nearly every game Has begun to slump in form over the last few games … pick up a thigh strain, you can be reasonably sure that predicting this is down to fatigue is a fair shout". Read today's article by Legrove , especially on injuries. I am doing this for debate and not for any other reason. I am generally worried about our injuries and it seems too often the reason we falter. Having a better squad with great players covering all positions does not seem to be the answer, but perhaps keeping our stars fit is.
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08/04/2014 14:34:00

I am not saying that all or most or even the majority of what he has written is right. It does bring up some interesting points though. Ones which are hard to dismiss
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08/04/2014 14:44:00

To be honest paul I just don't see what points you find in any of this of that can be of any special interest. Wenger has already said he takes risks sometimes with players. He has always done so and will always have to do so. The extent to which taking a risk is warranted depends on the individual circumstances at any given time. If you're asking me to accept that Wenger knowingly ran a player into the ground knowing that there was even a 50-50 chance that he would break down in a game and be out for a protracted period then I don't buy it. Wenger has said he knows more about every individual player now than it was possible to have known 10 or 15 years ago. It is still a judgement based on experience and observation of the individual. Often the decision to play someone is justified depending on the circumstances of the time even if a risk has to be taken. Sometimes the risk taken is regretted sometimes not. Everyone is an expert in hindsight and everyone knows exactly what should have been done in hindsight. As such they are always easy to dismiss.
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08/04/2014 15:33:00

Then we have to accept that every single season we will fail. Every season we talk about injuries to major players. Perhaps with better rotation and less of these 'risks' we can avoid these issues. The article says Wenger knew about Ramsey being in the red zone before the West Ham game. If we had started Flamini we could of potentially avoided a this situation. Sometimes risks are worth taking of course. If a player is at risk before your return leg in a CL quarter finals then fair enough. I think temptation to keep playing your best players is a fault of his. I believe the medical team know what they are doing, present the facts to the Manager and he makes a judgement call. I think he needs to be more responsible.
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08/04/2014 16:04:00

Over the last three seasons we've lost fewer injury days than Spurs or ManU. Generally we lose about 10% more injury days than the PL average but play some 30% more games than the PL average. Of the top teams only City and Chelsea have a notably more positive injury record. This can partly be attributed to being able to acquire bigger squads of more experienced and physically mature players to rotate. As and when they are compelled to develop less mature players as an integral part of their squads their injury record is likely to follow a similar path. Some seasons our injury record is comparatively good and others poorer. There's nothing linear about injury progression from season to season. Therefore we do not have to accept that every single season we will fail.
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08/04/2014 16:12:00

Where do you get these stats from? Every table i look at, always has us top.
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08/04/2014 16:29:00

The injury days are over at physioroom. They're compiled annually so you won't see the table for this season yet. There're different tables in different places but the Uefa Elite Clubs Injury Study Group tends to use playing days lost as the benchmark to assess the impact of injuries on any given participating club.
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08/04/2014 16:37:00

The physio room always has us with the most players out, The injury league has us with 70 plus days out injured than any other team. Martinez told the Daily Mail in 2012. “I don’t believe in soft-tissue injuries. If you get a soft-tissue injury in football, a mistake has been made.” Today in the independent. Raymond Verheijen, renowned Dutch coach, told The Independent that Everton’s success was down to Martinez’s thoughtful approach. “For Roberto Martinez, fitness is an integral part of football, like tactics and technique,” Verheijen said. “Tactics and technique are integral parts of football, so they are trained in football training by football coaches. But so is fitness, so Roberto Martinez is responsible for the fitness training of Everton.” This means that the fitness work is specifically geared to football, and not separate from it. “Martinez defines fitness as maintaining his playing style for 90 minutes,” Verheijen explained. “So you cannot start running around the pitch, you have to start playing the playing style for more minutes in training. If you say fitness is aerobic capacity, then all of a sudden fitness becomes non-contextual and you end up in non-football exercises like running around a pitch or running uphill, and fitness becomes isolated from football.” This is what Verheijen believes happens at other clubs, and he ascribed Arsenal’s problems to such outdated methods of conditioning. “There is a pattern at Arsenal, and it repeats itself every year, it is a no-brainer.” I think it will just be something we disagree with. I believe something is fundamentally wrong with how we train, condition, bring back players early, overplay players etc. I don't know exactly what it is but we seem to be the most affected team injury wise. Not necessarily top every single season, but near the top if not top always. We have the most soft muscle injuries and also the most set backs in recovery. Wilshere, Ramsey, Walcott and Ox all had setbacks in rehabilitation. Fans, pundits and managers always talk about us complaining about injuries and them costing us. If other fans are noticing this trend, it can not just be my/our own bias which makes me/us think we are more injured than anyone else.
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08/04/2014 16:43:00 which is based on physio room has us at 247 days compared to the next team down on 171.
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08/04/2014 16:49:00

I have done a bit more digging on Physio 2007-08 Arsenal 1st with 2004 days Newcastle 2nd with 1243 days (Chelsea 616, United 724). 2008-09 City 1st with 1594 days Arsenal 8th with 1024 days (chelsea 1118, United 1176). 2010-11 Spurs 1st with 1486 days, Arsenal 2nd with 1478 days (Chelsea 687, United 1068). 2011-12 Arsenal 3rd with 1343 (Chelsea 356, United 1681). 2012-13 Arsenal 6th 955 (Chelsea 565, United 1088). 2013-14 Arsenal top with 241 weeks. So from when physio room have recorded these stats we have been 1st, 8th, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 1st. Overall 1st.
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08/04/2014 17:10:00

Sorry missed the 09-10. Arsenal 1st with 1868 (Chelsea 1077, United 1398. So since the start of these recorded injuries we have finished the season 1st in 07-08, 8th in 08-09, 1st in 09-10, 2nd in 10-11, 3rd in 11-12, 6th in 12-13 and currently 1st in 13-14. 3 times we have topped it and then a 2nd and a 3rd. Overall 1st. That is quite impressive
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08/04/2014 17:16:00

The figures I gave were for the last three seasons combined which I think the figures you've listed will support. Again you need to consider that along with 4 or so other teams in any given season we can play 30% more games than the PL average. This season's may well be higher but I did say they weren't a linear progression from season to season. Raymond Verheijen is a self publicist who has criticised pretty well every major team and their fitness training at some point or other. He's rarely employed as anything other than a bit part consultant and rarely stays anywhere for any length of time. None of the professionals seem to take him too seriously. Arsenal benchmark themselves twice a year as participants in the Uefa Elite Clubs Injury Study Group. Though one season can differ greatly from another the conclusion has always been that the number and type of injuries we sustain is comparable to comparable clubs. Interesting though that the club are looking into medical supplements individual players may be taking to see whether this has any impact. As for the fans of other clubs they're just picking up the narrative - none of them will be taken anything other than a superficial view of the the issue. Why would you place greater store in what they tell you rather than what the club is telling you?
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08/04/2014 17:19:00

Not sure if you have seen my latest stats. 1st, 8th, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 1st in 7 seasons and 1st overall. Why don't I put great faith in what the club tell me? When you hear player is out for 3 weeks, back in a week or 2 and then it being 2,3,4,5 months. Setback after setback, then I unfortunately do not have great faith in what they say. I think the figures above also suggest we seem to face more injuries than any other team.
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08/04/2014 17:33:00

Yeah I get the rankings paul. Statistically there's a good chance we'll feature in the top four or five based on the number of games we play. Higher still when you take into account the more physically mature resources that 2 of those other 4 or 5 clubs have been able to acquire and rotate. We've finished 1st 3 times out of 7 - as high as 1st and as low as 8th. In one season we had an abnormally high number of impact injuries which would have distorted the figures overall. Our style of play ( we generally run further with more sprints) is also a factor. Even so, while we play some 30% more games than the PL average over the last 3 seasons we only experience an average of 10% more lost playing days than the PL average. Everyone is different and any medical prognosis of recovery time is bound to be variable so that for every Diaby we have there's potentially a Hargreaves somewhere else. In the middle of the period that your stats cover we have changed the head physio, appointed new physios with football experience to the team, appointed to new club doctor with an excellent background in sports injuries and built a new medical centre with major investment in modern treatment and conditioning equipment. Much as I can understand the idea that someone has to be at fault there doesn't look to be anything extraordinary happening with us - even though this season has been immensely frustrating in terms of injuries to key players at key points.
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08/04/2014 18:21:00

I think we will just have to agree to disagree. You think that we are comparable to other clubs with similar fixtures & resources, I think that something is wrong somewhere within our methods. Whether that is how much condition work we do, how hard we push players in pre-season, how often we rotate or how much we risk players who are on the brink. All I know is that most seasons we are talking about key players who have been missing at vital stages and our season has collapsed. If we can limit this then we better out chances.
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08/04/2014 18:39:00

It's fine just to leave it at that paul. I can understand your opinion and it is a popular one. Just as one observation on the injury days stats the periods when we finished top on those stats coincided with times when we were particularly affected by impact injuries. This was an observation that Lewin and Gazidis made at the time claiming that if you strip out those figures from the totals our muscle injuries aren't worse than comparable teams. For sure only they will have the depth of detail to make proper and forensic judgements which their participation in the UECISG most definitely provides. Thank you for conducting this exchange with civility and courtesy.
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08/04/2014 20:42:00

No problem, I think I am generally quite reasonable and open to opinions. I believe what particularly does not help Arsenal is the amount of times recovery predictions get extended by double or more so often. Weeks have become months too often. Think Ramsey, ox, wilshere, Podolski and many more. Gives the impression they are clueless when I'm sure this is not the case.
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08/04/2014 21:13:00


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