By Ollie Irish
“My squad is triffic. Triffic bunch of lads. It’s scary.”
Okay, I’ll handle this…
The formation: Arry as got his time tuned into a 4-4-2 formation, which may not be fashionable but it does seem to work with the players he has. I’m not one to disagree with the gaffer, so 4-4-2 it is.
Vedran Corluka – Michael Dawson – Ledley King (c) – Benoit Assou-Ekotto
Aaron Lennon – Tom Huddlestone – Luka Modric – Gareth Bale
Jermain Defoe – Roman Pavlyuchenko
Fairly straightforward, I think. Younes Kaboul is very athletic and strong on the ball, but he’s an accident waiting to happen at right-back, which is not his natural position, so Corluka – who is no natural there either but far more comfortable than Kaboul – gets the nod, as he did against Man City on Saturday. Assou-Ekotto is playing really well, still, which frees up the fast-improving Bale to torment defences with his power and pace.
Modric and the Hudd make an odd couple in the centre of the pitch, but they seem to work very well together, and make a more bold pairing than the destructive Wilson Palacios +1. Palacios will come in for the Hudd in away games at places like Stoke and Blackburn, I guess.
Up front, it has to be Defoe plus either Crouch or Pavlyuchenko, with the Russian getting my vote, just, because he’s more mobile than Crouchinho. Robbie Keane has looked sharp in pre-season training, and can make a big impact coming off the bench.
That’s my XI. Now let’s see yours…