Big game for both teams. Swansea need to push ahead with their recent run of results – beating Palace, Valencia, WBA and drawing with Liverpool is proof that last season’s surprise package are still a very good team. They have had a very difficult opening fixture list already played MU, ‘Pool and Spurs.
There is a growing belief that this Arsenal team have potential to do very well and a win at the Liberty Stadium would heighten expectation even further.
Swansea: I watched the draw with Liverpool and it was a very entertaining game which Swansea would have won but for some inexplicable play from Jonjo Shelvey. Hard to believe but Shelvey is a decent player away from the Anfield hell-hole.
There is quality throughout the Swansea team. At the back there is the (supposed) AW target of Ashley Williams, and he is just the type of player we like; strong in the tackle, good in the air, a natural leader and the beating heart of the Swans. Upfront the much admired Michu and the record signing Bony, who has scored 6 goals in 7 starts.
There is pace down the flanks with the spoilt brat Dyer and Routledge. An enduring memory of last season was Dyer’s tantrum after not being allowed to take a penalty at Wembley – a perfect example of the Me generation. Hard workers in midfield and a quality keeper make Swansea a tough prospect, especially at home.
Michael Laudrup seems to be a spiky personality with there being press-talk of his problems with the Swansea BoD, but he certainly knows how to create a football team. Anyone (even Evonne) could go to Old Trafford and get into the top 4 but what makes a great manager is the ability to build a team. SAF did it many times as has AW., Laudrup appears to made of the same stuff. As he remains loved at both RM and Barca, his future is assured. Future Arsenal manager? Possibly.
Arsenal: We are so blighted with injury in the forward areas that Mr Wenger will be forced to play Mr Giroud upfront on his own. Yes – the Christmas tree formation, with Özil , Jack and Ramsey running hard to create a forward line. It has worked before and we have enough attacking talent in midfield for this to be a successful tactic.
Theo’s absence allows Arteta to come back into the team and The Flamster to stay rooted as DM. I look forward to seeing how Arteta performs further forward. Of course, this assumes that neither Gnabry nor Bendtner start the game and given they both played the full 120+ mins at WBA, it seems a reasonable assumption.. My hope is that both sit on the bench until required and we play a slightly defensive game. The surprising possession stats. against Stoke show that we can sit back and attack on the break.
Problems arise due to the absence of Rosicky and in particular Cazorla who could really make this formation work.
We are on a remarkable run of form. 8 winning away games on the bounce and just the one stupid referee induced loss in a very long time (can’t be bothered to check the stat). Can this Arsenal team really be this good or is it purely that we haven’t played any quality opposition? Today is yet another test.
With confidence high and both teams committed to attacking football the prospect of an exciting game lies ahead.
written by Big Raddy