The Carling Cup NLD is not important

If you believe the title of this article, you're an idiot.

Yes, yes, it’s the lesser of all the silverware available and we have two massive priorities (4th place in the EPL and our Champions League adventure) to contend with. And no doubt Harry and Wenger will probably play a little mind-chess with their selection tomorrow night, probably (via the media) agreeing to play patched up sides of yoof, benchers and a few select first teamers thanks largely to injuries and those other priorities.

This gives them a chance to compete and win on an almost even playing level without selecting a best eleven, and thus appeasing the thirst for blood both sets of fans will demand. If we win, it's because we beat the kids. If they win they'll tell us how amazing their kids are. And for the losing manager, they will churn out the type of excuse that will no doubt hurt either set of fans, about how 'it was only the Carling Cup/it doesn't matter/it's not important'.

Even though this is only the Carling Cup, it's still a North London derby, and I'd be hard pressed to find a NLD that doesn't mean a thing. I'd be gutted to lose to the swamp things. If we had no players to select and had to field bits of string and belly-button fluff I'd still demand 110% and would be crushed if we got beat. It's Arsenal. It's the enemy. They think the same way. Why would any of the collective creeds think any differently?

We live to hate.

If it was up to me, I'd play a full strength side and be done with it. No belly-button fluff, well apart from JJ. It's all highly unlikely considering Harry has already stated he will use the entire squad to select his team from and in addition King, Corluka, Kaboul and Gallas are all (apparently) unavailable for selection thanks to injuries. Wenger has the same headache, not wanting to risk certain first-teamers because he'd be left with little in reserve if they pick up knocks on Tuesday night.

Which means, if you really want to be anal about things, you could argue that it's not a proper fully-fledged NLD because neither side are going to be anywhere near all-mighty strong. Which sounds like a ready made excuse to me. So let me refer you back again to what I said. I don't care who plays. Losing to them is never acceptable.

That's it.

Wear the shirt with pride. Get stuck in. Tenacity Tottenham. Bite their b*llocks off.