Leeds vs Arsenal – The Preview, The Pitch, The Probabilities…

Morning Folks…

Today is an important day – we have a cup game, a make or break cup game against the most hideous of teams in Leeds United. A team which have purposely ripped up their pitch so we can’t play on a decent pitch and have to change our style. It’s a terrible thing to do, but if the record books speak for themselves, we’ll go up to Elland Road and hammer them 4-1.

There is a big debate on whether Arsene should rotate or not, considering the result in the first game. Personally, with the pitch in such a state, I definitely don’t want Robin Van Persie to have any part of today’s game. The striker has come back to some really good form and I want him to keep fit for the rest of the season – if he can do so, they we will have a really good chance at winning things… I rather he played against Ipswich in the Carling Cup and helped us win the Carling Cup instead!

“It’s the sharpest he has been for a long time. Van Persie is a technical striker with short, sharp movements and [he] can bring other players in. In our system that is very important. He works hard for the team like all the other strikers and he is a left-footed player who gives different angles in the build up of the game. He depends on his physical sharpness.”

Injury for key player is all I see when I think about Elland Road, so I really hope we don’t risk RvP…

Talking about who is going to play… let’s take a look at the team that I think will play…


Eboue – Song – Koscielny – Gibbs

Denilson – Wilshere

Arshavin – Rosicky – Vela


With a bench of Shea, Djourou, Ramsey, Cesc, Nasri, Walcott and Bendtner

I’ll explain my team choice….

There is no way in hell we can risk Djourou – he’s played way too much football in recent times… and considering we have 2 of our 4 centre backs injured and considering our fifth centre back was randomly sold a few weeks ago… can we risk injury prone Djourou – I wouldn’t. I would hate us to lose another centre back. Will Miquel play? I doubt it – Arsene had a chance in the first game and he didn’t take it, so I doubt he’ll put him in in the away leg…

I doubt Arsene will play Ramsey yet – he will most probably be eased

into the first team via home games, and if we have Song at the back, then Denilson and Wilshere will come into the middle of the park. Personally, I feel like Denilson is going through the worst form of his career, but maybe he’ll come out of it – we need our squad players around in case of injury – so I won’t get on his back if Arsene plays him.

Up front, we have to drop Bendtner – he is the worst player we’ve seen in an Arsenal shirt this side of Christmas – and I know Arsene says that it’s because he’s not fit – but please give him some reserve games… Chamakh has done brilliantly for us and he really has to start… he’s got a hat-trick in him for sure… I don’t think Arsene will play Nasri or Walcott or Cesc, so think Arshavin, Rosicky and Vela will come in – they do have the ability to create and they need to perform. They need games and they need to be able to perform against Leeds – if one of NasWalCesc gets injured, then they need to come in and stand in – so today’s game is vital for them to find some form.

The massive I have is regarding centre backs and, if you’ve read yesterday’s post, Buying A Defender Could Win Us The Title, you’ll know my sentiments in greater detail.

Arsene did speak about it yesterday some more:

“No, it is still nowhere. We get many offers but, at the moment, nothing concrete. I cannot tell you [about the type of player] at the moment because it has to click in my head and nothing has happened yet. If you look at the centre backs we have, they are quality – Djourou, Squillaci, Koscielny, Vermaelen. The quality of the player coming in, what will it be? Is it a complement to the players we have already? It’s very difficult to predict.”

Arsene, you have to realise that the four you’ve mentioned are: Djourou – Injury Prone, Squillaci – Old & Error Prone (and injured for a month), Kosicelny – Inexperienced & Learning and finally Vermaelen –   terminally out of action (well for the next two months)…. We need another centre back and most of the available centre backs will be an addition to the current state of the squad…

Well, let’s not concentrate on that right now… we have a game to think about!!

  • Fo

    I agree with not playing Van Persie, but personally I’d like to see Nasri get some game time – he hasn’t played much (leeds / cardiff) and has had a mini-break.

    He could do some real damage. I think Arsene should have played Miquel at home, but it’s done now.

    My team:

    Eboue – Djourou – Koscielny – Gibbs
    Ramsey – Song
    Arshavin – Wilshere – Nasri

  • steveo

    AW must be blind if he thinks skillachi is quality