Who should be the Arsenal left back against Bayern Munich?

Who will play Left Back against Bayern? by KJ

The game against Bayern Munich draws inexorably closer and there’s a growing worry that we’ll be extremely short in the left back position against one of the best teams in Europe. There are really only two options for the left back position against Munich – Sagna and Vermaelen. Fortunately, Santos won’t be an option after securing a loan move to Gremio today.

Vermaelen is primarily a centre-back. However, he’s been known to slot into the left back position if required. Last season, he was frankly terrible as a left back and struggled constantly to contribute to the attack as well as lacking the positioning in defence. However, this season when he’s had to slot in at the left back position, I was thoroughly impressed. He struggled in the first match but from there on he was able to overlap the midfield competently and delivered good crosses. He combined very well with Podolski as well.

Sagna is the other option Wenger can utilise against Bayern. There is doubt over Vermaelen being fit for the game and hence Wenger may decide to deploy Sagna as a left back and play Jenkinson as right back. Sagna has struggled as a right back this season and hence it’s plausible that he’ll struggle even more so on the left. On the other hand, he was brilliant against Sunderland last weekend and could be on the verge of starting a streak of good form. Also, Sagna as a right footed player could nullify Robben’s left foot as he cuts in. The only problem is leaving a very inexperienced Jenkinson against the second best left winger in Europe in Frank Ribery (after Ronaldo).

We are definitely in a predicament with the injury to Gibbs. However, our best hope is that Vermaelen will be fit for the game against Bayern so Sagna can play the RB role. Jenkinson I feel lacks the experience to contend with the best wingers in Europe.

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61 thoughts on “Who should be the Arsenal left back against Bayern Munich?

  1. koolio

    Meybe Evra, or Baines, or even Cole. But we won’t get them, so just put Gervinho there, he won’t do anything in the front so lets see how he does in the back.

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  2. koolio

    NONE of you even know meade, you’ve seen him one or two games. And you people call Wenger idiot. Hyppocrits.

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  3. Gunnerineverylife

    Vermaelen should play left back,play Sagna as centreback,Koscienly/Mertesacke as another centreback,Jenkinson at the right(his crossing ability will be very useful in counter).

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  4. GFL

    Okay, this might sound crazy..but considering sagna’s performance against sunderland i think this back 4 might work

    Koscielny-Mertesacker-Sagna-Vermaelen

    It might be an option since sagna has not been performing at RB but has had a great game against Sunderland at CB.

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  5. Özil

    I pray vermaelen gets fit to play…even wilshere…we can suprise the world and win the champions league;if nigeria(underdogs) could win the afcon, then arsenal is not a let down…go gunners go!

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  6. GFL

    Also, i dont think Jenko has enough experience to be playing against Bayern.. this is not a duplicate comment

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  7. Dave

    @koolio

    Shut up downie. You call other people on here idiots, yet you think we should buy Baines who is 28 years old and is going to cost an excessive amount (good player, however) and Patrice Evra who is 31 and is slowly leaving his prime?

    And wow, did you really just say that we should buy Cashley Cole? Apart from him being 32, do I even need to lecture you on why NO arsenal fans except the plastic ones like you who started watching football in 2010 don’t want him here? Pathetic.

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  8. Big Gun

    Are you guys forgetting Nico Yennaris who has actually played a few games for the first team? He did really well.

    RB – Yennaris CB – Sagna/Merts LB – Miquel

    Subs – Jenks or Meade

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  9. Kanaalo fredrick - kampala-uganda.

    To me, j would think,Sagna-Mertesacker-Koscielny and Vermaelen, will be the best four!! jf vermaelen is tested fit on that day!! jf not, j would go with Janko.-Mertesacker,Koscielny and sagna. All the best for our team!! In Wenga and Arsenal fc we believe!!

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  10. Arsenal1Again

    Gibbs. He should be told to man up and shown footage of players when they were men. The buck stops here Gibbs. Get on that fxxking pitch now.

    Meanwhile in the land of reality…

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  11. Mallu Gooner

    Vermaelen is a big risk. He will not be fully fit for Bayern game.

    We don’t even have a chance to win champions league. I say we don’t risk him.

    We need our Verminator for the league and FA cup.

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  12. Ddog

    mert sagna kos jenk

    just imagine meert vs ribery

    no really though i dont think vermaelen fill be fit from what ive heard ( hoping it sounds worse than it is) so with that in mind i think, our best option is
    jenks—kos–mert –sagna.
    jenkison is inexperienced but we should atleast play him in his most comfortable position even if that is agianst ribery, remebr robbens teh otherside. sagna, i think will do a good enough job left back hopefully he will counter robbens left foot cutting inside being right footed. mert and kos are obviuos choices CB, and although kos hasnt showed the form he did last season, he tends to perform on big games, e.g. barca!

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  13. SD

    Can’t believe writers on this site are still stubbornly hanging on to the “Sagna is terrible” angle after the last game. There was never a problem with him. The system and the poor form of the rest of the team make him look bad at times, but he is still a good defender. If Vermaelen is healthy, either he or Meade at LB. Meade is still largely an unknown to me and most fans, so I’ll leave that to the coaching staff, and this is an awfully big game for him to get his 2nd start in, so can’t say much if they decide to leave him out of the game.

    Vermaelen will probably get destroyed against Robben, as he is really not that good as a LB, but I prefer that to letting Jenkinson try to cover Ribery. Sagna definitely needs to be on one of them though.

    I do have one interesting idea, but it would be a strange system and probably would cause more problems than it’s worth in action. Play Kos as a man marker on Robben. Vermaelen and Per in the middle. On attack, Vermaelen goes forward while Kos shifts over to the middle. When we lose the ball Vermaelen gets back ASAP and covers the middle to let Kos man mark Robben on the left. It would be a strange system, but could be effective if pulled off correctly.

    Also, I’m thinking of possible a front line of Podolski, Walcott, and Gervinho. While I don’t particularly like Gervinho overall, he works hard on defense and will help cover Sagna unlike Walcott. Of course, I think Walcott is being asked to play further forward most of the time to have chances on counters, as when he plays for England he does a halfway decent job of tracking back.

    This season is even more unpredictable than most for Arsenal, so I will not be surprised by any result against Bayern.

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  14. mohamed aziz

    wenger is bringing arsenal to their knees just to keep the american and gazidis happy he knew arsenal needed a cb and dmf he chose to pocket the cash

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  15. olojooluwaseun

    Hey guyz why not play a 5-3-2 formation. Szczesny/jenks,sagna, merts,kos,verm/arteta,wilshere, cazorla/walcott and giroud.
    Dis will make our back line solid enough 2 stand d likes of robben and ribery trikery,and while we utilize d pace of walcott and giroud physique.

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  16. Jathusanthegunner

    I think that we shall put Monreal or Gibbs in defence as Gibbs works well with Podolski and Monreal is good at defending . If Koscienly is fit put him in defence just like Vermaelan byut honestly I think we should give Mertesacker a chance as well as he’s brilliant at defending and getting the ball down the pitch . Sagna has to be on the pitch as he’s good at crossing and defending .

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  17. ArsenalMike

    Options are limited. There is always the solution of not having a back four, but using a back three. We’d need a couple players to slot in as wing backs. Naturally, a wing back’s role is not only defensive but attacking with a strong positional sense. A huge disadvantage would be a possible lack of width in the final third and the defense would need to be conservative. I would be amazed to see it though, I’ve never seen Wenger do a 3-4-3

    Sagna–BFG—Koz
    Walcott–Arteta–Wishire–Poldolski
    Chamberlain–HFB–Cazorla

    If Verm is fit, then you might see this:

    Koz–BFG–Verm
    Sagna–Arteta–Wilshire–Podolski
    Walcott–HFB–Cazorla

    Either formation scares me. However, considering our options, I’m not sure there is a better way. Ribery has pace, Mueller is class; a tricky player. We can only hope to overwhelm with pace and a good touch on the ball.

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  18. mtawarira

    if push comes to shove & we dnt have a lb on the nyt, id even suggest podolski slot in there. Not the best of choices but he’s no slouch neither. If we are to win, the battle will be won for us in the middle. arteta diaby santi jack theo olivier. & @ the back, sagna mert kos poldi(if verm is fit).. Poldi being the only one with license to bomb foward from the back leaving the other 3 to sit. Just a suggestion. Emirates must be nothing short of a racous!!! Like wen we beat barca 2-1. We’r no pushovers & we should make an example out of bayern!!! COYG!.!!!!!!!

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  19. Dez

    @Ozil: Nigeria are no underdogs in Africa!!!! Arsenal are no underdogs in Europe either!!!!

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  20. shadow

    It’s gonna be a though desicion, but jenkison can stop ribery he just need to run his ass off. And I don’t think that robben will play (maybe as a sub), we gonna face Müller and he is a f**king running machine and the second best scorer in the team. We can win this game but we should be ready to run and fight the full 90 minutes.

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  21. tobi

    Why is everyone saying Jenko is inexperienced? Do you get experience when you don’t play? Jenk has hunger for win and that’s why he plays aggressively .You need that as a defender..Its the same with Ivanovic of Chelsea and he’s doing a good job there…But am so sure that Verminator will be fine before the match.Wenger is only playing mind games.He let Santos go because he has an option.Verm will be left back and Kosc will be paired with Mert in the middle..Sagna back to his position..We will have Jenko and Miguel on the bench and GOD will surprise the world with Arsenal winning both home and away..Thumbs down if you like but we will come back here after the match and comment again

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  22. Christian-Nigeria

    @Koolio – who says Wenger is an idiot ? You I guess, cos I’ve not seen anyone refer to him as such in here.

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  23. abel

    I can assure u gibbs will be fit! Watch and see…he only paulled a hamstring against liverpool dats a 2week injury @ best

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  24. lopez

    Jenkinson-Mertersacker-Vermaelen-gibbs

    Jenkinson-Sagna-Koscielny-Vermaelen

    Sagna-Mertersacker-Koscielny-Vermaelen

    any of those works !

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  25. Invincibles nice (1)

    A very good point you made about Sagna nullifying Robbens left foot which he sooo favours, maybe too much. Its a real pitty that we have injuries to the one area of pitch we cant afford having.

    Would like to know if Meades close to being fit or if he already is. Many big games you see a team relying on a youth team player only for that kid to make a name for himself and looking as established as the best of them… would love this for Meade who i hope to become the next cole with one big difference in that hell be made of the right character and show loyalty.

    I think maybe our back line will be one of these….. Sagna Sacker Kos Coq, Jenk Sacker Kos Sagna

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  26. Ban10

    jenkinson can handle RB for sure
    n That was 1 bad game Thats it
    have faith in him

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  27. daniel

    @koolio, sit back down in ur armchair as that’s all u are is an armchair support.

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  28. Nickerless Bender

    Is le coq not fit? When he played there last he seemed pretty decent to me…

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  29. TrueGunner82

    Which ever defence we play, im gonna be sitting there for 180 mins(both legs) shaking and biting my nails. It doesnt matter who we play, one of the younger players is gonna have to grow some man sized balls and step up to th plate.

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  30. neil moxon

    Jenkinson needs to play to get experience or he will never
    be ready he should have been getting some game time when
    Sagna was playing poorly and why do we need to move players
    out of position when we have players for that position
    experience or not his team mates should be there to help him.

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  31. Mo Owais

    That performance by Sagna against Sunderland was the best any of our CB’s have had all season!! so y not keep him there???!!
    Sagna is a strong pacey defender and is good in the air! he is better suited for the Bayern game than Mertesacker!
    I would go for:

    Jenkinson Sagna Vermaleen Gibbs (If Fit)
    or…
    Jenkinson Sagna Koschelny Vermaleen

    What u reckon Gooners??

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  32. Toni Balle

    Coquelin anyone? He was amazing there last season!

    (AdMIN – Hes injured mate)

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  33. Johnno

    I think Coquelin will be our only option. Verm and Gibbs won’t be fit. Jenkinson is too inexperienced and raw and will be torn apart by Robben and Ribery – he struggled against Sunderland. Sagna, keep him on the right. Hopefully Kos will be fit by then to play with Mert in the centre. It would be an absolute miracle to scrap through with a draw, or a a 2-0 loss would almost be acceptable. Bayern aren’t often talked about but by golly, there aren’t many sides in world football better than them… They’re an incredible side with a lot of depth. Ahh, if only Monreal wasn’t cup tied! A draw would genuinely be like a win.

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  34. Toni Balle

    Nah ADMIN, I reckon Coquelin’s back. He wasn’t risked at the weekend as I suspect he’s the man Arsene plans to play there. He should be back this weekend. I am fairly confident he’s gonna start at leftback against Bayern.

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  35. Lix

    Coq can play RB or LB very well RB preferably then sangna LB if Verm is not fit, but if Verm is fit we are complete its a no brainer.

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  36. rob

    you seem to forget we have monreal.. He’s a good left back. He’d be better suited than anyone else, leave Verm to play cb where he’s best naturally, he doesnt have the pace to get forward and back to defend.

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  37. Invincibles nice (1)

    @Mo Owais… its a fair point but the fact that Sagna is only fife nine or ten is an issue, especially considering Mandzukic and Gomes being so tall and experts in the air. Sunderland have been struggling for goals all season but if they had the two Bayern lads uptop my geuss is they would have gotten on the scoresheet.

    I have a bad feeling that neither Gibbs nor TV will be fit and just pray that we get no further setbacks this weekend.

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  38. Mo Owais

    @Invincible nice (1)-.. Sunderlands Fletcher is a very good header of the ball and Sagna did cop with him well. Mertesacker is tall but still seems to lose every headering challenge!
    Sagna is on a high after that performance and we should continue to play him in that position as it was his best performance this season.
    But i defo see where ur coming from dude….

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  39. A Real Arse Fan

    Although my heart says Meade (As I know him and his people on a personal level) my head says Vermaelen with Meade on the bench.

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  40. Cannon Balz

    We must weigh up all that we’ve seen performance wise this season and make our selection accordingly . That being said the risk is high playing players out of their comfort zone a bit,but judging by some players performance levels a definite wake up call was needed ?
    Let’s break it down Sanga has been uninspired at right back.his attacking play hasn’t proved to be a plus and his lack of pace in recovery and being the wrong side of the play defensively has proved costly at times for the arsenal back line,lastly his crossing continues to be questionable as is his ability to pick out his team mates with a pass or cross! That is the downside the upside is for whatever reason moving him to Center back at least against Sunderland made for a more energetic Responsible consistant Sanga which lets face it is sorely missed.
    So that’s one CB Kos is the firm choice as the other if he is fit even if the lad has issues with his luck being in the wrong corner! handballs own goals and some PKs ….the. Point is still for all this bad luck to happen you need to be in the correct area of the field and committed to the cause and this one is committed and ready to go all in for the club and teammates so luck is a razor blade I hope Kos starts falling on the better side going forward stating with Bayern
    Vermarlin at Left back if he is fit ? Vermarlins problem is as Captain he trys to do to much and doesn’t need the distraction of this to his game he is a leader by example but under his terms not wearing the arm band!
    The last is controversial but the Coq is my choice as right back I’m not sure if other than Wiltshire his tough tackling has been eclipsed by anyone in the squad? So he will give us an honest performance defensively and he has the engine to get up and down he field in support of our attack but also to make the Bayern wingers track back and stifle there attacking aspirations in the process.
    The above may well not happen but in my opinion it could work Sanga in the CB instead of Mert is going to help Pace wise and all across this line we have players that in theory will tackle head and run on bloody stumps if they have to to get the job done
    Just my opinion that’s all!

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  41. Mo Owais

    I agree with u cannon!! Sagna for CB! He played out his skin in that position and won us 3 vital points!

    Coq has a great engine but what would that be telling Jenko if he is played ahead of him in that position- so for that reason i cannot see Wenger doing that.
    Jenko will always play ahead of Coq at RB.

    As for Mertesacker- i am just not a fan of his at all… for some1 his height he should be winning every ball in the air!! and should be a commanding defender!

    It is sad to say but Diaby has lost his form from the start of the season since his latest injury! I believe this is his last season to prove himself!

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  42. JohnW

    People, Robben will not play on the right, it will most likely be Thomas Muller. He’s the form guy, he scores many goals as well as assist. If Robben is given the nod, then we should count ourselves very lucky because he’s nolonger as good. Secondly, Robben does not defend, and considering that Lahm is very offensive, that would be unwise on the part of Bayern.
    I think Coquelin can do a good job. This season i’ve seen a less experienced M’Gladbach and Bayer 04 win against Bayern, just because they were discplined and took their chances. Bayern sometimes switches off at the back, believe me we will get enough chances to score, but should we squander them, then we will pay dearly.
    I watch the Bundesliga every week, so i know that should we inject some pace, attempt to hold onto the ball, and attack their centre-halves who are slow and dislike the physical game, then we will be ok.

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  43. Ars

    What about Rambo?I think he’s quite good as a RB (But he doesn’t has a strong pace)
    Rambo-mert-ver-sagna

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