I should be excited as we go to play one of the very best teams in one of the best stadiums in the world, I’m not. Is this CL fatigue, Arsenal fatigue, same old same old or something deeper – perhaps a winter depression? Who knows, all I know is that I’m not as passionate about tonight as I should be.
Last night didn’t help; to see the best team of my lifetime, Barca, humbled by a team we drew with twice (luckily!!) was a sign not just of the inevitable atrophy of life but also the end of another era, and I have only a few more eras left! A depressing thought.
Let’s be honest, the vast majority of us hope only that Arsenal can fight hard and return with the second leg being competitive. If we score then that must be possible and score we can.
Bayern Munich are not unbeatable and if we had a fully functioning first 11 in good form I would expect us to win. Instead we have to be pragmatic and this is where Micky’s BM line up will come to the fore. Coquelin is not good enough or strong enough to combat BM’s midfield, he will need help, a lot of it.
We have beaten City and BD playing conservative tactics, rope-a-dope works sometimes (thankfully not often). Will Mr Wenger PTB? Doubtful.
Bellerin Mustafi Koscielny Monreal
Xhaka Elneny Coquelin
Of course AW will not play the above, he will start Theo ahead of Danny and almost certainly Iwobi ahead of Elneny, but we can hope.
Much has been written about Ozil, little of it good, but we all know that if there was a combined AFC/BM team only 2 or 3 of our lads would start and Ozil is one of them. He is German Player of the Year and has been for 5 of the last 6 years. He is not a bottler, he is just a man out of form and we all know, form is temporary, class is permanent.
Arjen Robben may start tonight; what an objectionable cheating arse he is, for a man who has as much talent as any footballer on the planet, why does he have to be so objectionable? Hope he gets Xhaka’ed early..
Thinking of which, if he starts this is a huge game for Xhaka. Get sent off tonight and his Arsenal career is deeply in doubt, we cannot play top teams with 10 men. Has he learned his lesson? Can he be as effective without a bit of spite? Vieira learned it and became a legend.
This could be Mr Wenger’s last CL campaign, he deserves a signature victory and tonight would certainly be one.
Can we win? Why not.