If we win tonight and book our place on the big stage in London, with it will come confidence, belief and momentum. Should we fall short we could suffer a massive knock mentally and our form could dip. That’s not me being negative of pessimistic that’s just telling it as it could be.
Remember what happened last season after we were knocked out of the Champions League? We saw our small hope of winning the league disappear after losing two away matches against ‘lesser’ opposition. We don’t want that to happen tonight, get the win and push on.
It’s all about winning!
Winning breeds confidence, confidence breeds more wins. A win tonight is not only about getting to the Carling Cup Final at Wembley, it’s about maintaining the momentum and giving us a chance to win the silverware we crave and deserve.
This is how we lined up in the first leg: in no particular order
Wojciech Szczesny, Emmanuel Eboue, Johan Djourou, Laurent Koscielny, Kieran Gibbs, Theo Walcott, Cesc Fabregas, Denilson, Andrey Arshavin, Jack Wilshere, Nicklas Bendtner
It clearly didn’t work that day did it?
We were beaten by a side that appeared more eager, more direct and more desperate to win. We had only a few chances, Cesc probably had the best but sliced over from close range and Theo saw a couple of good chances saved by their keeper, Martin Fulop. Leeds had a couple of good chances too in addition to their goal and they will again tonight if we are not focused. Priskin troubled Eboue and Denilson just wasn’t able to control the midfield in the way that Alex Song does. Of course, we had no Sami Nasri that night either.
There is no place tonight for many changes from the weekend, in fact any changes! Arsene Wenger confirmed yesterday that we have no new injury concerns so play the strongest side and that has to be the same starting eleven that totally outplayed and battered Wigan. If Wigan couldn’t keep up with the way we played then neither will Ipswich. To be fair, if that starting eleven plays at its best, I don’t know of many teams that would keep up with us.
Well, Sagna isn’t suspended for this fixture, Nasri is fighting fit and healthy and if any one player deserves to play at Wembley its Alex Song, followed closely by Gael Clichy, Cesc Fabregas and then the others
Wenger has suggested the squad for tonight’s match will be the same one that faced Wigan. I hope he goes one step further and makes the starting eleven the same too despite him say he may ‘rotate a little’.
We have to play Sagna and we have to play Song. JD and Kos can carry on forming what is fast becoming a strong and steady centre pairing at the back and that wonderful attacking unit can blow the Tractor Boys right off their seats. Ipswich have no new injuries following their win at the weekend but they do have a new manager in place now. We know him too well and Paul Jewell is no mug. He’ll know exactly what he needs his side to do to guarantee their place in the final and no doubt he’ll get them doing that – but this is a cup match and we are Arsenal and it’s our turn.
All I would say to the staff at The Emirates is as soon as Ipswich arrive, take the coach keys and go and find a nice parking bay for their bus, we certainly don’t want to see it parked on the nice green grass between the goal-posts!
We feel stronger and stronger in every single game. It is interesting the chance we have in front of us because for me the way we play is fantastic to watch. Let’s just keep going
Well, it’s down to you Arsene to make sure we do, pick the right side and we will.
Seriously, we have been waiting too long for this chance, some may think it’s only the Carling Cup, I’m not one of them!
Tonight is about getting the result to take us to Wembley, we all love a good day out
So will it be Wembley or will it be……….
Have a good day all……….