1. Welcome back, Rob Holding
Rob Holding could not have asked for a more perfect night. His first appearance in almost a year after returning from an ACL tear. An easy match with little defending to do. Plenty of touches of the ball. The captain’s armband after Mesut Ozil was substituted, which is rather telling. And then, the cherry on top: a thumping goal.
You could tell how much it meant to Holding, his teammates, and the supporters, the defending wheeling away, hand aloft as the Emirates erupted in cheers. Welcome back to the first team.
Whether Holding is ready to push for a Premier League place remains to be seen. He certainly looked capable, especially in light of Sokratis and David Luiz’s harrowing errors of late. But he still needs to prove his fitness.
Nevertheless, for now, he did all that can be asked of him. He played a full 90 minutes and looked comfortable doing it. Welcome back, Rob Holding.