Another day in the world of Arsenal and another game. A game we could do with winning but even a point would be a really good result. Is this the game which decides the title?
That game is going to be really important. But is it going to define the season? No. If we win tomorrow night (tonight), we haven’t won the league.
When asked if there’s still belief that we can beat Manchester City to the title, he replied:
One hundred per cent. We knew from the beginning that City was the team to beat, probably alongside Liverpool, because of what those teams have done in the last six or seven years. They’ve fully deserved that credit and to be at the top. We were the ones that wanted to be closing that gap as much as we possibly could, and we are toe-to-toe with them. We knew we had to go to the Etihad, we know that after that they are going to have another five very difficult games.
Actually, Man City have another fixtures to play after this one, it’s Arsenal who have just the five but they’ll be tough. Very tough.
William Saliba is still not fit enough to return and Granit Xhaka is a doubt. If the latter misses out, I’d be very surprised to see Fabio Vieira start ahead of Leandro Trossard this time. Guardiola has a fully fit squad to select from although Ake is a slight doubt.
The only thing I’m sure about ahead of this game is that if Arsenal players make mistakes again, City will punish us good and hard. We have to be stronger and more focused in midfield because in turn, that will help the defence. Is this a game where the free roles go out the window? I think so because if Zinchenko starts roaming around in midfield, City will exploit the gaps he leaves. Personally, I’d like to see Tierney start this one with either Zinchenko or Jorginho alongside Partey. I think it’s safe to assume Odegaard, Saka, Jesus and Martinelli will start so there’s the eleven. If Xhaka is fit, I’ll forget what I’ve just written because I’m sure he’ll start.
We could spend all day discussing who ‘should or shouldn’t’ play tonight but I doubt any one of us would include Fabio Vieira. Not because he’s rubbish etc but because City will bully him off the ball with ease. Grealish will be on the ground more often than Jesus I’m sure and Haaland will be the monster of a striker he is. No offence meant there by the way but he’s just big, strong, athletic and hard to stop. A defender’s nightmare.
We have a pretty good attacking unit of our own though. No big striker of course but when Saka, Martinelli, Jesus, Odegaard, Trossard and even Xhaka are on form, they can be ruthless too and we’ll need a bit of that tonight. A lot if we’re going to win.
Earlier in the season, City beat us 3-1 at The Emirates but the match was closer than the score suggests. There was no Partey and no Jesus that day and Tomiyasu started at right-back instead of Ben White. Even so, we bossed the possession stats, had more shots but hitting the target was the problem. As were the Arsenal errors, the first, an awful back pass by Tomiyasu which allowed de Bruyne to open the scoring. Having equalised from the spot, City scored again after Gabriel lost possession a bit too easily. Nketiah had a few really good chances that day but his heading skills were right off. Fine margins…
Can this Arsenal team beat City? Of course they can but to do so there’s no room for error. Not tonight and not for the rest of the season.
Catch up in the comments..
It’s always nice to win things but sometimes losing teaches you more , as Kev said being a top youth player doesn’t always transfer to a successful adult career.
However their is another lesson to be learned tonight .No matter how you try to spin things the result tonight is probably the most important one of our young squads life.
It is our World cup final , despite having led the league all season we go into the Etihad as the underdogs. The whole world and his dog expect us to get beaten as far as the media is concerned the question is by how many we lose .
Arteta needs a high pressure team meeting to get them all up for it and if he feels someone is not doing it , get them off and put on someone early if necessary.
Yep, said similar in the post yesterday. Most of those who played last night will be gone in the next year or two.
Obviously nerves have made everyone have their fingers crossed and can’t type.
Personally I am not worried about tonight , If we lose I will not be surprised , if we win I will be delighted and a draw would leave me with a contented smile on my face .
Without Saliba it will be complicated. In my opinion, it was the most relevant decline. Maybe it’s no coincidence that we’re conceding a lot of goals.
I am hopeful of a good result. Come on Arsenal!
Same here Potter, I fully expect a City win.
With Saliba it’d be complicated Jm. City’s squad is so strong and very deep.
same team except Xhaka for Vieira
I honestly thought Arteta would beef up the midfield a bit..
We’ve got nothing in midfield.. it’s all a bit easy for City.
We’ll have to get Fabio Vieira on in the 2nd half.
was offside when the ball was kicked .Rico hasThe photo
I thought it was offside.
What has happened to this Arsenal team? Full of errors, no midfield, no fight..
3-0 down and on comes a DM. 😆
Sad evening all. I don’t recognise the team that I saw at the Emirates a month ago. No resemblance at all.
In my opinion, Arsenal was never competitive in the game.
despite feeling some decisions went against us we were outplayed by a team that exposed all the weaknesses that we have and we have quite a few.
Tonight we saw how our midfield was found wanting didnt follow their men and were unable to do anything to help the back four .
I have always maintained that games are won and lost in centre midfield Win that area and you control the game . Tonight Partey and Xhaka were not up to and it the two centre backs were exposed as they bore down the middle .
I really thought we could course an upset, but on the bright side, now Arteta and edu know who to sell and buy, so we can take the next step.
I thought that the referee was fair but apparently on Peacock TV in the US they thought that the VAR lines were incorrect, maybe money changed hands from an Abu Dhabi Bank into a Stockley Park branch?
It’s all bent.
Look at the subs, Man City brought on a World Cup winner and we brought on Eddie Nketiah, the whole thing is slanted in th3favour of the petro dollar clubs and it’ll get worse.
I like the Daily mail heading before the man city game.
Arteta saying, he will kill any player who show fear against Man City, and I don’t want that to happen.
So, if any player is missing from next week game, we know what happened to them. 😊😃
Is it only me or are others staring to have doubts about Ramsdale.
Only saw motd. Torn to shreds. Just as the kids were the other night. Same failings, too many trying to get forward, totally exposed and wide open to the break.
But for Ramsdale it could have been six or more.
I can accept getting beaten by Man City. There will come a time when their rise to dominance through financial sleight of hand could have repercussions for them. I hope so because this league has been distorted by their financial power and their arrogance is like a bit of sick in the throat that won’t clear.
But, I get that. It’s the absolutely horrible way our players approached the game that is so appalling. I felt that they were already beaten at kick off. At no time did I sense that we had any degree of control or confidence and that’s worrying. All the fine words about belief before the game came to nothing and we are left with a shocking, depressing performance and a clear mental block where they are concerned. Any further thoughts on a horrible night seem irrelevant. We were absolutely terrible.