Arsenal v Liverpool Preview – View from the enemy!

The first View From The Enemy this season comes from Olli Emmerson at the Liverpool Blog and I must admit it is a very detailed and impressive Preview article and a great website! Unsurprisingly they are predicting an Arsenal defeat to Jurgen Klopp’s team, but I think they may be in for a bit of a shock this afternoon!

Anyway, here are their thoughts:

Arsenal v Liverpool Preview – London Calling

Liverpool travel to the Emirates Stadium to face Arsenal on Sunday, as their 2016/17 Premier League season finally gets underway, 88 days after last season ended with the Europa League final defeat to Sevilla.

Pre-season form

Much has changed since then, not least in terms of transfers, with Jürgen Klopp seeing a huge overhaul in terms of personnel, and even staff, at the club. The likes of Martin Skrtel, Jordon Ibe and Joe Allen are no longer Liverpool players, with names such as Sadio Mane, Georginio Wijnaldum and Ragnar Klavan ready to enter their first season as Liverpool players.

Of course, we’ve seen these signings already in a Liverpool shirt, during pre-season. Rounding things up quickly, the Reds began with four easy wins in the North West, before flying out to America for the second leg of their pre-season tour. There was one win and two defeats in America, before Liverpool returned to Europe for their most convincing pre-season display, a 4-0 win over giants FC Barcelona at Wembley. They lost to Mainz by the same score-line the next day, but it mattered little given the amount of youth players on display.

There has been business for Sunday’s rivals too, although not as much as the fans want, or even demand at this point. They got it done early, bringing Granit Xhaka in from the Bundesliga for a £30million fee.

Arsenal’s pre-season has been slightly less flashy than Liverpool’s, with no extravagant tour. The Gunners have won four games in a row after drawing their opening friendly 1-1 to Lens, the last of which being a 3-2 victory over fellow Premier League side Manchester City.

Team news

Liverpool’s well-documented injury list continues to trouble them going into the weekend’s game, with Daniel Sturridge and James Milner the latest to suffer knock’s, leaving both unlikely to start on Sunday, whether or not they’ll make the bench is unclear. Sturridge did return to training on Wednesday, as did Marko Grujic.

Joe Gomez is a long term absentee, whilst Sheyi Ojo has picked up an injury in the past week. Simon Mignolet will start in goal due to Loris Karius’ broken hand, whilst Mamadou Sakho remains sidelined with an Achilles injury. Joel Matip is likely to be in the squad, but the fitter pair of Dejan Lovren and Ragnar Klavan look more likely to line up at the heart of the defence. Lucas Leiva is out of contention through injury, but will still be at the club on Sunday after a move to Galatasaray broke down.

Further forward, and Emre Can looks set to be flanked by two of Georginio Wijnaldum, Jordan Henderson/Adam Lallana in the midfield three, with Mane, Coutinho and Firmino making for an exciting attack, Divock Origi set for a role off the bench in the second half.

Arsenal have injury concerns themselves, with Per Mertesacker and Gabriel both out in defence, whilst Arsene Wenger has said that Laurent Koscielny, Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud won’t feature as they aren’t match fit after returning late due to Euro 2016. Due to this, it’s going to be a makeshift defence, whilst Xhaka should make his competitive debut.

Liverpool predicted XI (4-3-3): Mignolet; Clyne, Lovren, Klavan, Moreno’ Can, Wijnaldum, Henderson; Mane, Coutinho, Firmino.

Arsenal predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Cech; Bellerin, Chambers, Monreal, Gibbs; Xhaka, Cazorla; Iwobi, Ramsey, Sanchez; Walcott.

When they last met

These two sides last met at Anfield back in January this year, contesting one of the most thrilling games between them in recent years. Whilst it was a game to remember for many reasons, many recall it as the night Roberto Firmino truly announced himself to the Premier League.

He swivelled and beat Petr Cech at his near post, with his weak foot, after just 10 minutes, restoring Liverpool’s lead with a curling effort from 20 yards after some slack goalkeeping from Mignolet had allowed Ramsey to level things up.

Arsenal would go on to level again, and then take the lead, thanks to a Giroud brace, only for Joe Allen to lash in a 90th minute equaliser, sending a snow-swept Anfield crowd into delirium.

Liverpool have won their last three opening weekend fixtures, having not won any of the previous four.

Arsenal have won their last two opening weekend fixtures, having also not won any of the four before that.

The last five Premier League games between these two teams have seen 21 goals, at an average of 4.1 per game. The PL average last season was 2.7.

Daniel Sturridge has scored the winner on the opening day in two of the last three years for Liverpool.

The last time these two met on the opening weekend was in 2010/11, playing out a 1-1 draw at Anfield.

The details

Match: Arsenal vs Liverpool

Venue: The Emirates

Date: 14th August, 2016

Time: 16:00 BST

Referee: Michael Oliver

Prediction: Arsenal 1-3 Liverpool

So, from that it sounds like it will be a well-fought game, but I am glad that Sturridge will not be in the line up! They also conveniently forget that Liverpool very very rarely win a game at the Emirates which should give the Gunners a little extra confidence.

Let battle commence!



  1. Truth be told, a game against Liverpool is open for any result. Let’s just hope we come out on top. In fact, I am just as optimistic as the bloke from Liverpool but I put my money on Arsenal. Seriously, all we need to do is to keep them at the gate for 30 minutes. Gegen pressing works like that.

    1. its the pressing of a klopp team that concerns me.
      they will come flying out the blocks.
      this is a huge game for our midfield.

      it really could go.anyway,

      try an tell me last years 3-3 at anfield wasnt the most mental game youve seen in ages.

      it was carnage. watching it gave people hernias

      1. Hahaha ? I got double Hernia, thanks to Wenger’s game plan strategy, in the final ten minutes, of every game.

        1. Being fat and walking cause hernia. Is much safer to stay in front of the teevee. Trust me, I have seen people.
          It looks like there will be clouds over Sydney tonight. I will blame Wenger

          1. Hahaha ? Thanks for the tip Bud.
            I will keep that in mind, just incase I get Fat in the real world! ??

      2. All I remember from that game was Mertesacker ducking in the last minute. It was pretty much depressing seeing that.

      1. It will of course, AFTV will have the usual ranting grumps, only with the volume turned up. Twitter will go into melt down, media will publish the worst of the worst. And then of course, the apocalypse will be foretold. And everybody who stayed out of it, will end up with a banging head-ache.

    1. You got that right! If we give their attackers as much room as we normally do, especially Mane and later Origi, we will suffer. Why do our defenders find it so hard to do the simple schoolboy thing and close people down? Why stand off so far we practically invite them to cross or shoot and then dangle a leg out like rank amateurs? Madness! Hope this has been sorted for this season but I’m not counting on it and it’s something which makes me cringe every time the opposition gets near our penalty area. Good luck to Calum and Rob… and, Hector and Nacho, please help our central defence and stop those freaking crosses arriving in the first place!

  2. We need to get behind the team,lets put everybad thing behind us,lets shout, roar make our voice loud from every corner of the emirate one Gunner. We’ll win by 2 nil

  3. Did we get the wrong CB from Villareal? Watched Bailly since he went to Utd and seems very composed and solid. Big year for Gabriel when he gets back…

  4. @JAmerican

    We didn’t get the wrong defender, just check out there transfer fees…baily was 30m+ whereas Gab is somewhere in the middle say,that’s on a lighter mood….

    We never know what will happen,we might just blow them away because whenever liverpool wanna lose,they lose BIG, let’s hope today is one of such….

    Klopp knows/plays only one pattern, ‘Gengen pressing’ if we can choose to play on the counter, we will hit them hard..

    1. I really want Gabriel to be massive for us and cement his name in the starting 11. He’s made me real nervous at the end of last season though but hopefully that’s out of his system for this new season.

    2. If referees are as feeble as they normally are Eric Bailly will look world class. If they somehow pluck up the guts to actually give penalties for fouls in the penalty area he will be seen as useless. Robert Huth is another who springs to mind… a fouling b******* who gets away with murder.

  5. Another season starts and I will be supporting my club only this time from my armchair. I want wenger to prove me wrong for once

  6. We really need to get off to a flier. If we do, or can get the points, the Leic lot do not look so confident. I don’t want to get too far ahead because this is a huge game. I hope Arsene has them prepared, because I hate it when we are trying to slow a game down but a team like liv are going full throttle. I expect them (liv) to be fired up, the first goal if by us can put a dent in that. We’ve been playing some quick movements in pre-season, we need to do that, go for the jugular. I just hope we are wary of the counter though. Looking forward to it, but very nervous.

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