Cut and paste the post for the Dortmund away fixture …..
Except, Arsenal were in the midst of our terrible run and some of the players who have now bedded in were still struggling. That is not all, our Centre Backs had yet to be formally introduced and with Aaron out, Benayoun started. The stadium was full of fervent and expectant BD fans. For those who were three sheets to the wind in order to combat the nerves, BD equalised with a wonder goal in the 86th minute. A draw was a very good result given the circumstances.
Arsenal must surely be confident on the back of such a fine run of results, however the same can be said of BD who this weekend went to Munich and beat Bayern – never an easy task and even harder this season as Bayern rediscover their pedigree. BD know that should they lose tonight their CL adventure is all but over, they talk about tonight as a Cup Final. Coming to THOF will give the Germans a huge challenge as they play in front of the best supporters in world football in the best stadium in world football – it could inspire them or petrify them, let us hope for the latter!
Nights like tonight are special – a slight chill, time to have a beer or two in the pub, some banter with mates, the floodlights, a full ground, top opposition; I wish I could be there – instead I will be sharing the experience with other AA’ers who are not so privileged.
60,000 Lucky Ones
A worry must be Koscielny playing at RB. True, he had a good game on Saturday but playing against Pilkington is very different to Kagawa who showed in Dortmund that he is a fine young player. The improvement of our midfield 3 bodes well for the future. Arteta appears to have the football intelligence required to assist his young playmates – Song looks better and Ramsey is improving weekly alongside the Spaniard who is proving to be an inspired signing. Another huge difference is the return of The Verminator, what a monster player this man is. He give us more defensive security, leads the team from the back, improves all the players around him, is superb coming forward and is all round a top, top player.
* Raddy’s team selection has been amended following the late news that Gervinho will not be playing due to a personal problem.
Looking at the above team I ooze confidence. Santos is a different proposition to Gibbs (who played in the first leg), especially at home where he will have more opportunity to get forward – not that he needs an invitation ! Diaby is on the bench and we look forward to seeing him contribute during the coming months; if he can stay fit he is a marvellous albeit infuriating talent. Should Walcott play as he did on Saturday I can see him on the scoresheet and we can only hope if AA plays in place of Gervinho, that he will prove as effective as the Ivorian has been lately. If our defence can keep them out, we will win.
A new BR feature for home games will be famous Arsenal fans and we start with Harry Beck. You may not be familiar with the name but you certainly are with his work. Harry created the schematic London Underground map which is a work of true beauty. Harry lived in Finchley Central and was a Gooner through the Chapman years dying (happily) just after we won our first Double.
Harry wearing his favourite Arsenal away shorts. ( out of picture but take my word for it)
Where we have a major advantage is in the experience of our manager. Mr. Wenger will analyse the previous fixture and make adjustments to the way we play. AW stated at his press conference that BD were in form and “developing,” He expects a fine game of attacking football, plenty of thrills and a topsy turvy night. So do I.
Written by BigRaddy