If you’re Carl Jenkinson, this week has not been kind to you.
After working hard to come back from a serious injury and finding himself back in the starting lineup, his form was just fodder for the online masses. Mathieu Debuchy’s return was a relief, if that tells you anything.
But Debuchy is gone now, his hamstring exploding like an elastic band stretched between two monster trucks. He’s ‘broken,’ understandably.
So we know that Carl Jenkinson will start for Arsenal against Southampton because the only other option we have is to play Gabriel there. Or maybe Ainsley Maitland-Niles.
How does he feel to be back in the first team? He spoke to the matchday programme about it. “With Hector’s injury, some of my first games where I’ve been properly involved and back in the team have been two tough games.
“They’re the games that, as a player, you want to be involved in and I know that I’m back at Arsenal now with those two as my first ones back. I’ve loved it. To play in games of that magnitude for Arsenal is where I want to be.
“I still get nervous [ahead of games like that] to this day and I always will. I don’t look at that as a negative. Sometimes it’s good to be nervous because it keeps you on your toes.
“I was nervous, especially before the United game because it was my first game back of a really high intensity, but I thought I settled into it well and had a solid game. That gave me confidence and immediately you settle back into things to get back into your normal routine of doing what you know best by playing football.
“There were some nerves there but anyone who’s gone through the same thing I have with my injury will always have nerves.”
Not exactly what we want to hear Jenks. Not in the slightest.
The defender has spent the best part of the year working in the gym in order to come back stronger. Don’t let a silly thing like ‘nerves’ get in the way.