Arsene Wenger has confirmed the much maligned Wojciech Szczesny will return to the Arsenal starting XI against Middlesbrough this weekend.
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) February 13, 2015
Szczesny has made just one start since our 2-0 defeat/horror-show at Southampton on New Year’s Day, after which he was reported to have smoked a cigarette in the showers following the game.
Although it isn’t a surprise, given the reports yesterday, perhaps it shows a slight softening of Wenger’s clear annoyance at his no. 1.
The Pole was between the sticks for our last FA Cup outing against Brighton where he conceded two goals – though both were quite unavoidable due to the makeshift defence sitting in front of him.
And whilst David Ospina has been surprisingly good in his six games since the turn of the year, conceding just three goals, it’s hard to honestly suggest he’s at the same level as Szczesny at present, and his penchant to punch rather than catch regularly puts the Gunners back line under more prolonged pressure – meaning we are more likely to concede a goal.
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Wenger, though, is said to have been impressed with the Poland international’s temperament in Arsenal training.