This is a quick and dirty post to discuss how we can beat Pool in Saturday. I like to get your tactical views and ideal formations: the more the better!
I watched the Pool v Chavs game last Wednesday and saw the West-Londoners making it really hard for the Champions League winners. How did they do it? By placing a solid wall of three ALLROUND midfielders in front of the defence and keeping the side-doors – especially the one on their left – firmly shut.
If we want to have a chance on Saturday Arsenal will need to do the same. Klopp’s Liverpool (but also his predecessor’s) love nothing more than combining through the middle and open up opponents for fun. If that is not so easy they will happily go the flanks, and especially their right flank, where an Egyptian football pharaoh rules the land, is the go-to-area. The difference between us and the Chavs is we have some awesome firepower to cause the Pool defence some real worries, and so, if we play it well, have a real chance to get something from this game.
The line-up I would pick is:
Ceballos-Xhaka-Torreira protect the defence when Pool pushes us back into our own half. As soon as we got the ball we have the midfielders to pass our way out of the press OR put one quickly over the top to the hungry horses of Auba and Pepe (or Laca – whoever is the fittest on the day). Key is also to play Ozil in the hole who can hold up the ball for our midfielders and attackers to move forward and find that killer pass easiest of all. If Ozil is not available, Ceballos can pay in the hole and Willock can partner Xhaka and Torreira in midfield.
The full backs have to play at the highest level and I would go for Mustafi for this one. As a full back I reckon his occasional mistake will harm us less, but in terms of energy and experience he is just ahead of Ainsley for this cracker of a game.
Over to you!