Firstly, there is an AA’er in hospital (RA), wishing you a speedy recovery.
Tonight is an oddity, we go into a tie as firm underdogs. Hardly a pundit gives us a dog’s chance, and it would take a confirmed optimist to disagree with them; AM, on paper, are easily the best team in the competition.
We are The Arsenal. We are not Sunderland or Stoke or Lokomotiv Crapski, we have history and have won silverware in 3 out of the last 4 years. Atletico will be worried. Even the mighty Real Madrid lost in London this season.
Simeone has stated he is likely to play an extra defender tonight to bolster an already tight defence. Atletico boast the best defence in World football (or so we are led to believe). They have conceded only 18 goals in La Liga and not once at home for 11 matches. Simeone is the George Graham of Spanish football, a man who believes that defences win games.
Our defence is the opposite 😦
Atletico have not won silverware since 2014. They are an ageing team with many players over 32. They may be missing Diego Costa (hopefully) and if we can stop Greizmann and Gameiro on the counter, are unlikely to hurt us (big IF). Should Costa play I look forward to his reception from the fans 😀
Can Arsenal win? Of course we can. A slice of luck, some genius from Ozil, a Ramsey masterclass, rapier-like finishing from Lacazette, allied to an organised defensive performance and we are Kushti.
Mustafi Koscielny Monreal
Bellerin Ramsey Xhaka Wilshire
Elneny’s injury gives Jack a chance to shine, he has been below par the last few games but play well tonight and he will be WC Russia bound, play poorly and not only will he not get a new contract but he will be West Ham bound!
Patience may be vital without the team going gung-ho as the game progresses.
Some passionate support (Anfield was amazing on Tuesday), players willing to give 100% and we have a chance.
I am an optimist, I think we can beat AM over two legs, as the Beatles sang “I’ve got a Feeling”