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Tuesday cannon fodder: filling time

The internet has been replete with “thought experiments” and “challenges” lately.

Arsenal Training Session
Goalkeeper was easy because Arsenal haven’t had many Poles.
Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images

Never doubt human creativity. With all the extra time people have during these days of (hopefully) self-isolation, sports fans have been looking back, creating their own lists superlative players, moments, wins, losses, you name it. Over the weekend, a fun one swept the footballing world — best 11 from your club but only one player from any one country. I thought I’d take a stab at it for Arsenal.

Goalkeeper: Wojciech Szczesny (Poland)
Right Back: Lee Dixon (England)
Centerback: Per Mertesacker (Germany)
Centerback: Kolo Toure (Ivory Coast)
Left Back: Nacho Monreal (Spain)
Defensive Mid: Gilberto Silva (Brazil)
Defensive Mid: Patrick Vieira (France)
Left Wing: Alexis Sanchez (Chile)
Attacking Mid: Dennis Bergkamp (The Netherlands)
Right Wing: Freddie Ljungberg (Sweden)
Attacker: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Gabon)

The toughest country to decide was France, between Vieira and Henry. Ultimately, the choice was based more on Aubameyang being available at striker and being the only Gabonese player in club history (so he didn’t eat a spot from a more flexible country). That flexibility is why Alexis is in my side as well. The outside backs were a little tough to pick because Arsenal are a bit thin, historically, on top-level talent at the position. I also really wanted to include Mesut Ozil on this team, but there just wasn’t space in the attack.

What changes would you make to your one-country, one-player Arsenal 11?

Reminder: the second round of the bracket starts today. Look for it later this afternoon!