It was a very happy Champions League draw for Arsenal Football Club and the fans, especially after all the tough draws the Gunners have been getting in recent years. But even though the French Ligue 1 outfit Monaco was about as good as we could have hoped for, there are no pushovers at this point of the elite European competition.
And if Arsene Wenger and the players go into the double-header knockout tie with any such illusions then we could be heading for our usual early exit, so I thought it was about time we had a good luck at the Monaco team that will be heading to north London for the first leg in about a month.
The bad news for us is that they are in good form domestically as well as having won their UCL group, however narrowly. Monaco won away at Lille yesterday, extending their unbeaten run to eight games in all competitions. They have not been beaten since losing 2-0 away to Rennes at the end of November and what also seems clear is that a tight and solid defence is the basis for their success.
Since losing that game, they have not conceded a single goal. They don’t score many either but it seems clear that the two games between us and them are likely to be close run affairs and that Arsenal may need to be patient and make sure we do not become reckless and allow them to score first or get a crucial away goal.