Arsenal v Villareal Expected Lineup for Biggest Game of the Season

It is almost time for our next biggest game of the season. Sometimes it is best not to say too much and focus on the straightforward task ahead: outscore Villareal on the night (including away goals) and we are in the final. That final is on 26 May and we all know that this is a special day in the history of the Gunners. But let’s not focus on that now. We need a top performance by the boys and I reckon they are ready for it.

Depending on fitness – Luiz, Tierney and Laca all get a late fitness test – I reckon this will be our team tonight:

Is Tierney fit? I feel somehow he is. If not, Xhaka with his left foot will play LB again and ESR or Elneny will play in Granit’s place. I don’t expect Luiz to be fit and Robbo will do a good job at RCB instead. Chambers back in RB, I reckon. Up-front we need movement and good passing and the trio of ESR, Ode and Saka offer this. It would be great if Laca could start but I reckon this is Auba’s night (and he sounds very ready for it).


By TotalArsenal.

38 thoughts on “Arsenal v Villareal Expected Lineup for Biggest Game of the Season

  • If we press them in their half with our 4 attacking midfielders and Auba then they won’t be able to threaten our defence.

    Our finishing has to absolutely on form this evening, start fast and start ruthless, no messing about.

  • I hope we’ll look as good and aggressive as we did in that game Kev.

  • Is it 4-1-4-1? Or 4-2-3-1 with ESR partnering Partey in midfield?

  • Charles Watts
    Oh wow. Xhaka injured, Tierney starts.

  • It’s just the quarter of the game has passed, but I already enjoy Arsenal’s attacking players switching places. I’m not sure if it will lead to a breakthrough, but this is at least some creative stuff.

  • There is no intensity to our game and we are so missing Xhaka’s distribution and protection of our shape. Arteta needs to get it right somehow. He clearly is going for 1-0, which I understand but he has to make changes tactically now. Big half coming up.

  • Total, it’s a one goal game, simple as that, that’s why we’re so cautious…

    If they score it’s finished.
    If we score we’re through.

    Set up for Martinelli?

  • Hopefully Emry can spring a surprise against Man U I am kinda glad we dont have the option of getting smashed by them in the final the way we are playing lately.

  • Emery out coached Arteta, that’s the simple fact.

    On the plus side, we’ve avoided more heartache in Gdańsk…

    Odegaard won’t be joining us now and on tonight’s performance that might not be a bad thing, bang average from him.

    We so missed Xhaka…

    Great to see Tierney back, we’ve missed him and maybe Lacazette on earlier would have helped, Aubameyang had the chances, few I know, but he had them and wasted them.

    Still got a chance to qualify for the new UEFA trophy, but it’s like the booby prize.

    Night Total, night all.

  • I would not be too hard on Ode though but sure he did not perform great but who did and he was just coming off injury much like Tierney they both did not get much time to rediscover their best form.

  • Sadly T A I think he has to go. They just seem to have a clue. Whenever we get in trouble we send wait for it Willian . Who does nothing. Party was dead on his feet and he got no support.

    Odegaard looks like he is a little lost. In fact the only player who looked like he might do something was Bellerin. .too much reliance on the youngsters, who have run out of stean.

    Arteta seems like a good guy, but in his terns Of results he just hasn’t delivered. Frankly I:am fed up with our centred backs passing to each other,

    Sorry no more experiments for me. Let’s get someone experienced in


  • Frustrating game to watch. Tough season. I feel like the manager, any manager needs one more season at this point. That’s my feeling right now. Deserves a little investment in nidfield.

  • That was a chastening elimination and coming from a manager he was brought in to replace, Arteta must be feeling very low now. Its a tough job!

    I was in a bad place all week, until late yesterday (Wednesday) as I had to stay quarantined in a Government approved (hotel) accommodation, pending receipt of my test result at the Toronto Airport. Only saw my family Wednesday evening, having arrived Saturday afternoon. Horrid feeling knowing you came to be with the family. 2/3 days is okay, but apparently, the health vendor used had a backlog and passengers suffered delays in the release of their results. The reason its been hard to post on here this week.

    Enough about that. Its a sad day in Arsenal-dom and while the manager has to hold his hands up, the players just didn’t look up for it enough, to be honest. Villareal were more tactically aware and seemed to have a plan they stuck to. You could feel they were capable of pulling a goal back, had we scored anytime with any thing like 5 minutes to go. I think the youngsters just couldn’t live up to the expectation, especially Saka who just didn’t seem to do a lot right today.

    Lesson for Arteta, when chasing a game, you don’t take off your captain and best scorer for Willian! The man came on and only maintained presence in safe areas, avoiding sections where a demand for a key pass would be demanded of him. He has a lot to do to endear himself to the fans, that one.

    Easy to say Arteta out, now. However, I like what he appears to be building here and won’t feel offended if he is allowed more time. It would have been better if he had another cup to show for it, though.

  • GN5, trust it is going well with you.
    Just checking to know if you saw my late predictions entry in the previous thread. Last post on there, I think.

  • @goonereris, what a horrid experience mate. Sorry about that.
    Well the less said about the match the better. If this is the response and performance of Arsenal in Semis and one of the biggest match of the season then god help us. I have been consistently saying that the team is also greater than sum of the parts and thre in lies the failure of Arteta. The team looked dire. We missed Xhaka so much and not sure why Arteta keeps changing the formation. It would have been far better if we had played Elneny with Partey in the center. Partey in the last two ties with Villarreal was exposed. He cannot play as a lone midfielder in the center. Pepe had a stinker , Saka tried and so did ESR.
    Subs were again unimaginative and Willian is a lucky man to be earning so much for playing worse than amateurs.
    Iam quite fearful of our future. Sacking Arteta is not going to help us ajs we have dithered on this too long. There is no credible name out to there. Nagelsman is gone, Tuchel took over Chelsea and we are left with no exciting young manager for our project. Look at how Tuchel has transformed Chelsea. The league table never lies and it’s a sorry state of affairs with our team. We are looking at a bleak future and if next season we dont get into Europe we will keep getting down the table quite fast. I for one is extremely worried and dissapointed. What has become to our beloved Arsenal. In span of 15 years from Invincibles to midtable also rans. Very very worried gooner as I wake up today.

  • @ JNYC

    I agree. More time needed. But he has a lot to answer for when it comes to Willian. Seems Arsene-esque with his desire to prove people wrong on the Willian signing.

    Play the youth now. Balogun, Azeez, Nelson…no one that isn’t staying – nketiah, cebalos, odegaard etc.

  • We can analyze the game as much as we want, there were plenty of lows (low intensity, lack of pressing, missing energy and urgency, defenders passing to each other, attackers not looking for places to receive the ball, playing the ineffective byline-crosses game again, late and meaningless substitutions), but it wouldn’t be fair to imply that this draw should seal Arteta’s fate.
    In my subjective opinion his fate has been sealed some time ago – miserable league position, plenty of woeful performances, ineffective player favourism – but it was a real (and significant) chance to salvage the season. It was just a few years back when we had our concerns with Wenger and Emery that “finishing 5th is derogatory to Arsenal”, so – at least for me – it is hard to witness my club becoming a rightfully mid-table team that even considers extending the contract of the manager for finishing at 10th place and destroying 150M of value.

    I’m sad and bitter. It has some objects, but mostly at myself for basing my happiness too much on Arsenal (results, performances, transfers) as well as for reaching a desperate state where I would gladly swap a convincing win over Chelsea for sacking Arteta. However it is hard to see which top coach would be excited for the opportunity to stop Arsenal from slipping further down the slope with limited transfer kitty even if we had the funds to sign someone from the highest caliber (which we certainly don’t).

    While you may think the predicted lost value above was a huge over-estimation, this 150M was a really very conservative forecast. I wanted to shared the details, but I lost the mood. And I doubt anyone would be interested in my bitter calculations anyway.

  • Thanks Eris, your predictions are recorded. So sorry to hear of your woes, it must be difficult for you.

  • Well now the season grinds to a halt with the glass empty, all that is left is possibly a managerial (hope not) or hopefully an ownership change.

    My expectations were never too high to start with but I never expected that we would end up without European football in 2022; however it could be a blessing in disguise as we will be able to give our full concentration to the EPL and the FA Cup to find our way back into Europe in 2023.

    Being without European football is bound to affect the quality of the player transfers so Arteta will have to use his second full season to show us what he has learned from 2020/21 and if he is indeed the right man for the job..

    Yesterday turned out to be a game in inches and Auba could well have scored twice – but for the posts – but it must be acknowledged that Emery had the better coached team who could have easily responded if we had scored. The bottom line for me is that I’d sooner bow out in a close semi final encounter than be embarrassed by Man U in the final.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s