A few takeaways from Leicester ahead of the real challenge at Liverpool

Good win at Leicester, but now the real challenge comes. By Konstantin Mitov

Good to see you again, lovely Arsenal people and it’s also good to beat Leicester away. Honestly, it’s a feeling I can easily get accustomed to, and we’ll need to get results at grounds like these if we want to move to the most important top 4 spots in the league.

The win at the King Power wasn’t a vintage performance, but one that got the job done and keeps our momentum. And we’ll need all the confidence we can get as we’re heading to Anfield, most likely twice as the Carabao cup draw didn’t really favour us.

There were a few key takeaways from the game yesterday. Most obvious one is that Kolasinac should be nowhere near the squad. We tried our luck twice with him, but Liverpool will destroy us if we risk playing with him again. I suspect our back 3 will feature Luiz in the middle, Gabriel on the left and Holding on the right. Could be wrong, but if anybody in Germany is interested, we should most definitely look to offload him.

Secondly, the game against the Foxes gave chances to some players to make a stake for a place in the team. Elneny looked solid again. Reiss looked sharp, but lacked a bit of end product. I expected a bit more from Pepe as he is under huge pressure from Willian, and even though his drive gave us the lead, I expect a bit more from our 72 million man.

Lastly, the goalkeeping position will be under the spotlight. Leno made some good saves, but also looked a bit shaky on some crosses. It was a smart decision to start the German to give him some more game time that will be needed as he looked rusty. Since we sold Martinez, who did surprisingly well given the chance, I expect the money to be reinvested in the midfield.

Torreira will surely be moved on and it’s no secret we like Partey and Aouar. We don’t have free money to spend and raising the funds for one of them means squeaking as much as possible from players who haven’t really performed well. Not the easiest of tasks.

Liverpool for example added Thiago and Jota. Two very good signings to a team who already had the league in the bag with a whopping points gap. Despite our decent start and the fact that we somehow toppled Liverpool the last two times we faced them, there is no doubt that this game will highlight a lot about our progress.

This game is not a friendly like the community shield, nor is the league settled. They will look to punish us and our record there is not pretty. We’ll likely have much less of the ball, but I think this would actually suit us, if we survive the chances they’ll create. The defense worries me as we’ll really miss Tierny, and Kolasinac is a disaster waiting to happen.

I expect AMN to start again. He’s been sublime on the left in big games and I expect him to be trusted again. The lack of fans in the stadium works in our favour, but the “oh Arsenal can actually play a decent game” thing won’t help this time. Managers at the top level analyse teams and Liverpool will surely know that they’re unlikely to just walk over us in second gear like before.

Our midfield will hardly “control” the game, but up front if we are sharp, we definitely have the tools to hurt them. I think Willian will take Pepe’s place, although I thought Nico’s pace and ability to drive past a player could’ve been helpful.

We must at all costs avoid a thrashing. We need to go out there and make a case for ourselves, because the league now is much, much harder than it used to be. Our next games include 2 visits in a row to Anfield, Sheffield at home, City away, Leicester at home and United away.

Not the easiest run of games, but the league is much, much harder than the days where Wenger strolled to 4th. There are too many teams with great ambition and financial power too, so if we want to compete, there are no excuses. We must go difficult grounds and prove a point, starting with Monday.

Konstantin

20 Comments

  1. lcebox says:

    I think we got 3 wins in a row vs liverpool.
    I just hope we can go and play not hide which I think we will , but it’s still hard to think how we can get 4 in a row.
    But maybe 1-1 will be like a win all things considered.

    1. lcebox says:

      Maybe 2 wins as my mate has reminded me.

  2. ThirdManJW says:

    I love the fact I have no fear going into these big games under Arteta. 5 wins in 9 so far against the top teams, and we’ve been competitive in every one of those fixtures. Won our last two against Liverpool as well, which will give us even more confidence.

    Under Wenger for well over the last decade, we all knew pre-match we’d get an absolute battering against the top teams, which proved correct the majority of the time. Even on the odd occasion we beat a top side, I think if most Arsenal fans were honest, they would admit to not feeling confident before these games. As we know, this barely improved under Emery as well.

    Now under Arteta, I feel the fear is gone. Not only are we now confident for these big games, I think our opponents are starting to take notice at how tough a game it will be against us. Before, it was more of a training game for top teams playing us, but now they know they have to fight for the win.

    This all stems from Arteta. Loving this guy!

    1. SueP says:

      Me too
      It’s the fact that we’re competing-even if we’ve gone a goal down. It really is a team effort: self belief has returned

  3. Sue says:

    Praying Tesco will be fit 🙏…And now Auba has finally broken his duck against them, I’m hoping the floodgates have opened!! COYG

    1. Solly gunner says:

      😁😁 sue
      Who the feck is Tesco ?
      Probably being bit thick this morning slow start

      1. Sue says:

        😄 Solly – Tierney – all down to his bag!!

  4. billy bunter says:

    Kolasinac had a reasonable game against leicester. AMN was sh*t. He is not good enough , needs to be moved on. Kol is decent back up

  5. Eddie says:

    Enjoyable article…
    Konstantin I miss your days of whining and cringing about Wenger😂😂😂
    I miss how everyone on here nearly used to attack you for your negative articles every single gameweek.
    Like I said great article, it’s nice to have you on this side once again.
    Maybe it’s delusion or fantasy but I feel confident we’ll go there and we’ll battle them. They’ll be careful not to get caught on the counter.
    They know we have fast players up front and pur wingbacks are actually fast too.
    I think we shouldn’t be scared just because they’re at home, the more space we give them, the more dangers they’ll create, but under Arteta that fear factor is gone.
    Xhaka-Ceballos needs to make deliver on Monday, Xhaka delivers every time now, but we’ll need that extra performance from him and the rest of the team

    1. Kenya 001 says:

      Well said Eddie we should/ no longer fear the so called big boys. We are much confident now under Arteta the same way we were under early Wenger days

      1. Loose Cannon says:

        We are the big boys now, an FA and CS for a start is no little achievement. Leicester learnt that on Wednesday. We no longer have the little kitten purring and chasing moths in the no 10 role, we attack and defend in packs. I still prefer Bellerin as RB for his runs and that one good pass/cross brings home the winner. Expecting a draw in the EPL and a win for us in the league cup provided Ozil, Guendozi do not make it to the team roster.

  6. Jay jay says:

    I think it comes down to our defensive structure. We seem harder to break down and work harder off the ball.

    It will be interesting who will be the back three and hoping Holding will continue to play as he seems to handle Mane on the past occasion we have played liverpool but there new additions will make for a hard and interesting battle.

    The midfield will be key

  7. Sean Williams says:

    My biggest fear is that we may think we are good enough if get good results. We desperately need to replace Torreira, Guendouzi and Ozil with two TOTL midfield players to be a dominant team who can challenge in the EPL. No investment in the midfield will cause us to be inconsistent….and it’s hard to stay and play with confidence if you are inconsistent. Buy two midfielders we could come 3rd…..if we don’t buy we will probably be 6th or 7th. Sad but true.

  8. Goonster says:

    Liverpool are a different beast at Anfield.
    But I feel much more confident with Arteta. Can’t see us conceding 3 to 5 goals against them like we were used to under Wenger and Emery.

    I hope I did not jinx it for us and Arteta now.
    😆

    1. SueP says:

      You’d better not!😬😬😬

  9. Maxis says:

    So, why picking on only Kolasinac? Was he the worst player on the pitch that night? Did AMN not make more errors than Kola on the night? But, no, you dislike Kolasinac and so any error he does is put through your microscope. Rubbish!

  10. Akonteh Andrew says:

    Manager Arteta if Tierney is not there, MaitlandNile should take his place please. When he’s tired, I hope that Mari comes on as I heard that he is fit now. If you put Kolastinac, Salaah will use him and make goals for Liverpool. This is very through.
    Willian should play in Pepes place because Pepe’s too much dribbling puts off Counter attack pressures from our attacking force. Meanwhile Willian will puts the kind of pressure needed on Monday.
    Elneny puts pressure as well. So note should be taken of that. Monday should be pressure,pressure, pressure!!!! And pressure!!!

  11. Sue says:

    Thursday @19.45 our Carabao cup game…COYG

  12. Mish says:

    Carrabao what? A tournament with mere 100k winner prize money? Thanks lets gift liverpool that one and keep score line under 3. But roll out tanks for monday fixture, 3 points tops, we need to realize games worth giving away to conserve aggression on key matches.

    1. SueP says:

      I was shocked when I read that. £100k!
      The only saving grace is that it gains entry to the Europa League at an early level

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