Walcott and Gnabry could face off after Wenger cup pledge
Arsenal still want to win Capital One cup despite AGM comments says Wenger
AFTER dismissing the Capital One Cup as the least of his priorities as Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger has been trying to drum up some enthusiasm for tonight's clash with Reading in the same competition, and a showdown between Theo Walcott and Serge Gnabry could spice up the game considerably.
During Arsenal's tempestuous AGM at the Emirates last week Wenger attempted to explain to unhappy fans why he would rather come fourth in the league than win a domestic trophy at Wembley.
"For me there are five trophies: Premier League, Champions League, the third is to qualify for the Champions League, the fourth is the FA Cup and the fifth is the League Cup," he said. "Players ask: are you in the Champions League? A new player doesn't want to know if you have won the League Cup."
This morning he was singing an ever so slightly different tune as he told the Arsenal website: "Having a 'priority' does not mean something else is not important and you neglect it... We fight as hard as we can to stay in all the competitions and if you have to make a choice you make it as late as possible.
"I gave a frank and honest opinion about where the priorities are. But you want to do well in all the competitions in which you play."
No matter how much he wants to win the Capital One Cup, there is little doubt that Wenger will continue with his policy of blooding youngsters in the competition, which means that 17-year-old Serge Gnabry (above) could find himself the centre of attention at the Madejski Stadium.
Indeed he may even find himself in the starting line-up alongside the man some think he will replace at the Emirates, Theo Walcott. Goal.com reports that Arsenal have scheduled a final round of contract negotiations with Walcott and if they cannot agree a new deal he will be offloaded in January, and many believe that the Gunners' get-tough policy is down to Gnabry's emergence.
If they both feature tonight it could have a profound impact on Arsenal's future.