BIG GAME DAY
All to play for.
Liverpool land in London to play a top four supremacy battle.
It’s going to be exciting. Liverpool have most of their attacking players available. Arsenal have most of their best players available. It’s going to be blood, guts and thunder.
Well, that’s what I hope.
Tactically it’s going to be interesting to see what Arsenal do today. Coquelin has a massive task ahead of him. Liverpool have nimble runners flying in from everywhere. He’s probably going to be the key man for us today. Hopefully he’ll be sitting in front of a centre back pairing of Gabriel and Koscielny. A much more matched partnership for a team that boasts speed.
Up top, we’ll see the return of Ozil after his Berlin exploits. We’ll likely see him reunited with Cazorla, Giroud and Sanchez. A very exciting offering. Good news on the Sanchez front, at least he played his friendly in North London, rather than usual South America trip. He won’t be jet lagged. He’ll have been rested and raring to go. I’m pretty sure he landed man of the match on the losing team?
If we have our front row in silky smooth football mode, a Coquelin prepared to play in the smart disciplined way he has all season, then we have a very good chance of making this a very enjoyable afternoon.
I guess the concern is that Arsene loves to play ball. Liverpool will come to kill us. The game will be probably be open. United strangled Liverpool a few weeks ago. It wasn’t pretty, but it was effective. I can’t imagine we’d play a game like that. When it’s at home, it’s your prerogative to attack. I just hope we don’t leave the back door open to exploitation like we did in the last game we lost at home in the league (United).
I think LIverpool have beaten us once at home in the last 18. We’re on a winning streak of 8 (6 in the league). Confidence is either going to be high, or we’ll start getting to that heady state where we fear losing the streak. All the noise in the camp this week has been positive, Wenger will have them focused on amassing a massive points total and carrying that momentum over the line.
Today is the big one for me when you’re talking about the top four hoodoo. We played Monaco and didn’t go with a game plan and they beat us. Liverpool aren’t on our level, it’d be tempting to think we can play them at home and just beat them. But that’s not the right mentality. Have we learned from Monaco? We’ll we show Liverpool the respect of giving them the same preparation as we did Manchester City? I really hope so. That would show how far our game has evolved. That’d give me confidence we’re not just a calendar year team and that there’s a chance we can progress next season.
Right, I have to shoot early, picking up tickets, finding beer houses, you know the routine.
Have an amazing day… see you on the other side!