Monday, 5 November 2012

Schalke (A)

Well, sadly I have to talk about the game at the weekend. It was another slow and just generally lacking any sort of fight. We were beaten in every area of the pitch and it was just routine for United. Once again our first shot on target was in stoppage time and it was a great goal for Cazorla that will be overlooked due to the generally awful performance. I have to admit, I think Wenger got it all wrong tactically, he failed to take Wilshere off and subsequently he got sent off. Ramsey was again played on the right and I'm sure he'd be the first to tell you that's just not his position, I can only assume he didn't play Walcott as he payed 120 minutes mid week but sadly I just have a feeling its Wenger being stubborn over his contract situation. That's all, I'm not going into the whole Santos/RVP shirt incident.

Tomorrow night we return to Champions League action against Schalke, in Germany. This is the game I was dreading even before they took us apart at home the other week. It's a notoriously tough place to go and play and in our current form I must admit I am worried. Our team is clearly lacking confidence and there is no doubt a win over there would settle a few nerves. To do that we need to attack fast and we need to actually work their keeper and just play the Arsenal way. Sadly we are still without SZCZ and Gibbs who at the back I think we are missing tremendously, Santos likes to go tearing up the pitch and doesn't get back and although Mannone hasn't done too bad, I still think SZCZ is our number 1 and the sooner we get him back the better. Ramsey is out after picking up a knock so I would expect to see Walcott on the wing.

Obviously the players to watch in the Schalke side are Farfan, Affelay and Jan Huntelaar. Our defence need to sort themselves out and they need to do it fast, otherwise teams with the sort of attacking threat that Schalke pose will simply tear us apart. If we tighten up at the back and attack with pace on the counter like we used too, we have a chance. They lost 3-2 at the weekend which shows that they do lose and can be beaten. 

The team travelled to Germany earlier today I believe and Wenger needs to prepare them mentally for the tough game tomorrow, I just hope that tomorrow it all clicks and we fire into gear. COYG!

Prediction: Schalke 04 1-1 Arsenal