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Football returns, the need for end product, and big decisions

Welcome to Friday folks, hope you’re feeling ready and able for the weekend and, of course, a healthy dollop of Arsenal on Sunday. Mikel Arteta will meet the press today ahead of that game, and after the warm weather training he’s got plenty to think about as he tries to take his side from Drawtown to Winsville.

What he does have is – at this moment in time at least – the luxury of a generally healthy squad, with plenty of cover in each position. He has options available to him all over the pitch. Not only should that help him foster a competitive environment where your place in the team is under threat if you don’t perform to the requisite standard, he has the ability to keep fighting on three fronts for as long as we remain in the cup competitions. Hopefully we go right until the end of the season in the FA Cup and Europa League, as well as making improvements in the Premier League.

Speaking in Dubai earlier this week, Mesut Ozil said:

Our goal is to be in Champions League. This year we had difficult times, but I think we’re in a good way.

I don’t think we can dismiss the ambition, but he didn’t really expand on how he expects Arsenal to get there. It looks…