After coming on in the 27th minute Arsenal’s second choice keeper Lukas Fabianski produced a solid performance to stop Villareal from getting a win in the first leg of the Champions League quarter final.
The young Pole feels he is ready to step in and help Arsenal continue their attempt to end their trophy drought.
“I wish Manuel all the best with his help and I hope he comes back really soon. I am maybe not ready to take over the number one spot yet – but I am ready to play.
“I respect what Manuel has done for the club. He was playing great for the last couple of months. Now the situation is like this and I have to play – I am ready.”
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger was also full of praise for him:
“I am very pleased at the way Lukasz came on.
“Despite not even being warmed up he made two great saves.
“I was just thinking after the game how important it is to have two classy goalkeepers.
“Unfortunately one of those classy goalkeepers does not get a great number of games.
“But if you don’t have two good keepers you don’t have a chance at this level.”
That is quite a lot of praise for a 23 year old keeper. After coming on as a substitute and then producing a superb performance, it reminded me of Almunia coming on in the Champions League final in 2006. The circumstances were completely different though but Almunia let in two goals, one in between his legs but Fabianski showed great reflexes and athleticism to deny Villareal time and again. Almunia at that time was much older than Fabianski is now, so Fabianski is no doubt “classy”! I am sure he wont disappoint.
Moving to our returning duo of Adebayor and Fabregas now. What a difference the two make. It’s amazing really. Adebayor since returning has played 3 games. 1 for Togo and 2 for Arsenal and scored 4 goals already. Fabregas has played 2 since returning, assisting all of Adebayor’s goals in them. They give hope to the team and fans alike.
Adebayor was very much criticized before he got injured for his lack of ambition and laziness on the field. But now he is showing he is quality. You can’t score 30 goals in a season if you aren’t good enough nor can you win the African Player of the Year award for nothing. Barca and Milan were ready to pay 30m for him and it would have been money well spent had either of them been successful in their bid.
As for Fabregas, I don’t need to say anything! I doubt there would be a single person out there who doubts his quality!