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Liverpool – Time For A Test In Testing Times

If Arsenal lose today and lose heavily on Wednesday they will be left with only the league to play for, with their confidence in tatters and the fan base in meltdown, baying for the manager’s blood.

At least that is the doomsday scenario that has been put forward by some, including John Cross and  Paul Merson among many others.

They may well be right, but why is it restricted to Arsenal?  It surely equally applies to City and Chelsea.  Ok, they don’t face the Champions of Europe, but still.

Is it that for some strange reason our fans demand more than those of the two free spending oil tankers?  Or are we more susceptible to fits of mass depression?

If Liverpool lose, what have they got left?  The league?  The much derided 4th place trophy?  I think this game will be very difficult for us.

We beat them very comfortably in the league at home, but that was a long time ago.  We were in much better form and had a certain young Mr Ramsey in the team.

Liverpool will be very confident after the thrashing they dished up to us last week and they are the form team in the country at this moment.  Add to that they will play their best eleven and we won’t have anywhere near our best, on top of the obvious that will miss out due to injuries, and there will be quite a bit of rotation given who we play on Wednesday.

All we can hope is that somehow Arsene manages to find a balance in the team that has somewhat deserted us since Aaron began to tire shortly before his injury.  I know we have been winning in that time, but it was not against teams in this sort of form.

I would love to write that I’m full of confidence and winning will be a formality, but that would be a lie.

Big test?

Indeed it is.

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54 comments on “Liverpool – Time For A Test In Testing Times

  1. So, I’m just trying to get my head round it all. Something like this. A day ago Arsenal were a crisis-ridden forlorn flagging shipwreck waiting to happen. Today Arsenal wake up to say: after a 5-goal set-back we navigated a testing match against Yoo without conceding and might easily have won; a few days later we rotated 6 players, blooded a 20-year old in a key position, and saw off the “in-form attack” (justified) of the EPL in a knock-out fixture without conceding in open play; we are a point adrift in the league standings, and entering the thrilling last 16 knock out of the champions league. In terms of depth, we are missing two key players, one said to be the top player in EPL (until injury), the other a seasoned 15-20 goal a season winger; but we have introduced an 18-year old and a 20-year old, successfully, to proceedings this season, and 2 other young players are looking fabulous; they and several “second-string” players seem capable of highly competitive Arsenal football. Meanwhile Chelsea manager, in a juvenile spat with ours, finds himself looking ridiculous. We have our problems, for sure, but the facts seem to be that we round the curve of the last bend with wind in our sails, everything intact, everything to play for, a top, top team in the most competitive league, contenders in three competitions. Liverpool gave a tremendous account of themselves, they are definitely in fine form and have three great players up top, they threw their absolute best and top team into the match, but lost. They lost it tactically; thought if they play it the same way they would win. They would have been more dangerous with a Yoo-like 90-minute, ball-control midfield strategy, containment of Arsenal (who always looked dangerous going forward). They tried, in fact, to out-score us but couldn’t.

    I am thrilled to see Sanogo in such a high-profile match, and previously Gnabry, both taking major steps, and according to Wenger, Bendtner too looks sharp in training. Gedi can’t be too far behind. Santi, Tomas, Chewie, Bac, Gibbs, Jack and Giroud all with rest. Flamini full of life. Lukas getting back. Ox looking unstoppable. Sanogo competing. Oh, and Jenks, the most under-rated RB in the EPL. Aaron back in about 3-5 weeks. Nacho back to his best. Fabianski competing for the starting jersey. And Ozil, the chap has played in every match, ought to be “tired”, but is looking sharper with every outing.

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  2. Is it possible we might pay due respects and say well done Monsieur Wenger, you got it absolutely right.

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  3. excellent synopsis Paul, just goes to show if fans would just ignore the media driven soap opera surrounding football and just concentrated on what is happening on the pitch they would be a lot more realistic and happy.

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  4. Bravo ZimPaul. AFC has been the most consistent team in the League since January 2013. Despite all the losses we suffered in the past 14 months (to Spurs, Bayern, Villa, United, Chelsea, City and most recently Pool) we have always come roaring back. Lost in all the fear mongering and prophesies of doom is a record which demonstrates a deep, talented, resilient squad under a great manager with a great desire to succeed. Even if we fail to overcome Bayern, the champions of Europe and prohibitive favorite in this round of 16, we are well set to give it a good run for the League title and the FA cup.

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