Why Stoke will NOT be the same old problem for Arsenal

I am not trying to say that Arsenal will have a nice and easy game on Saturday, when our perennial tormentors Stoke City come to the Emirates Stadium to get the Premier League action up and running again. I just think that the Potters of Mark Hughes will be quite a different proposition to the one that we normally have to deal with when coming up against them.

The same might be true when we go to the Britannia stadium in January, as their pitch has been extended to come into line with the standard size wanted by the EPL and also as Hughes is no longer playing the same brand of football as Tony Pulis.

Stoke are still a very physical team but not quite to the extent that they used to be and on Saturday they are likely to be without two of their chief enforcers; with our old friend Ryan Shawcross out of action due to a long term injury problem in his back (altogether now aaahhh) and their Scottish midfielder Charlie Adam having been one of two Stoke players red carded in their last league game against West Brom.

Stoke also sold Steven N´Zonzi to Sevilla in the summer, so all in all the Arsenal players´ shins, ankles and all should be getting a much easier time of it than usual this weekend.

The former Barcelona player Ibrahim Afellay was the other player sent off and that also takes away some control and creativity from their midfield but their new signing Xherdan Shaqiri and the likes of Bojan will still encourage their manager to play football. Hopefully that will play right into Arsenal hands, as long as we are on our game of course.

Tags Adam Shaqiri Shawcross


  1. The old “Stoke” prob may not be there but i wouldn’t underestimate any team in the PL…esp since our home form hasn’t been the greatest of recent…

  2. Never underestimate ANY PL team, even at home

    We lost our first home game to a team that wasn’t a top team

    Beating Stoke is a MUST

    We have three away matches in a row after that
    CL away, Chelsea away and Spuds away. Those will be extremely tough. We need a good win at home to go into this away road trip

    Also, we haven’t won a home match yet. So another reason why this match is important

    You can not win the PL without an excellent home record

  3. Can’t agree more with what has been said so far : do not underestimate anymore so called second or third tier teams in EPL. They have the quality today to beat anyone. If you for one second think you are best just because you are Arsenal then you deserve what’s coming your way. I just want the three points so that I can relax before the game in UCL. And no injuries please.

  4. A win is a must. Liverpool won at the Britannia earlier this season, why can’t we defeat them at home? We must win.

    1. You mean the game with the 86th min Coutinho goal..any they managed to come back from 2 goals down to salvage a draw at Spuds…so i definitely wont take them lightly…

    2. Stoke are the most Unpredictable team in the league.. this is a team that can beat us 3-1 loose to us 3-0 beat Liverpool 6-1 and loose to them 2-0 they are the top fours boogey team in the sense that no team within the top four has a claim to be undefeated against them… We underestimate them we will enjoy a similar kind of @$$whopin liverpool faced at the end of last season.

      1. They will look to sit back with Shaquiri orchestrating Diouf and Arnatauvic. I imagine our offense will be stagnant unless the game opens up. Stay tight defensively and we SHOULD win.

  5. This season’, we need to take every game like a ‘Big Match’. Even when we play with an average team or smaller team, let’s play them like we are playing big teams. No small teams in the EPL this season. Expect more shocking results this season. Hopefully, we’ll defeat Stoke at Home.

  6. What they’ve lost in physicality they’ve gained in creativity. The addition of Affelay and Shaquiri to their squad is a big attacking plus for them not to mention the pacey Osaze already in the squad. So i think they would be dangerous on the attack.

    I believe they would want to keep a tight defensive formation to frustrate our game and hit us on the counter. If we want to stand a chance of having a free scoring game we must not play the likes of Ramsey, Ozil or Carzola on the flanks, since they have the tendency to cut into the center which stoke will pack with a lot of bodies.
    Walcot, Ox and Sanchez should play on the flanks to give us the opportunity to behind their defence wall from the side. Giroud should play through the center to do the physical battle with their defenders and also do his favourite “holdup play” thing. Of course we must have our ever rock solid Coq crushing all attacking intents. And hopefully, Gabriel and Kos will man the defense if fit. Playing Mert will be a risk at the back, we need men who can match Stokes’ physicality.

  7. honestly no confidence in the team will not be surprised one bit if its a draw or a loss, Purely down to the fact that wenger will not change personel and stick with his faves Per(Should be gabby) Ramsey on wing(Should be ox or theo) . same old same old sadly its reality hes soo predictable its untrue.

    predict the worse case scenario and hope maybe the likes of sanchez ozil or santi can pull something out of the bag.

    1. @Mo1

      Well said! Because Wenger’s so predictable, I think in many ways, preparing to play Arsenal is the easiest job of the season for rival managers. I can’t even imagine they would need to see video footage. We all know it’s the same tactics every game, no plan B to worry about, the starting line-up is easily predictable, and so on, and so on…

      1. yeah like what Liverpool did, made sure our only CF was tightly man marked and dont worry about long range shots – our players dont even try them..just have enough men behind the ball so it doesn’t get walked into the net..and play counter attacking football – always works well at emirates…

        An early goal is what we need – forces opponents to play the game and not sit back and defend, and that only happens if we start with quick tempo and not that laid back attitude.

  8. @thirdmanJW,

    Im really hoping joel campbell finally gets a shot as a c.f the poor lad hasnt been given a sniff, baffling yet giroud no matter what always starts.

    high press pace on wings give space to likes of ozil n santi and jobs a good one lol

    think we should all apply for the managers job its simple really 😉

    1. Haha, we all should apply! I for one could do with £8 million a year from a job that comes with no pressure at all.

      Campbell one is interesting and I’d like to see more of him. Not sure if he’d be the answer, but at least give the kid a go. Problem is, Giroud is our only out-and-out striker and is also on Wenger’s favourites list. Probably have to wait for the league cup to see Campbell.

  9. Focus is key. If we play our game to the level we can play our game, we win. Simple as.

    Stoke will seek to compress space without the ball, and then flood wide and forward with it. They are very good at seeking width so Arsenal would be wise to not play too high with our wing backs. We also need to create, which will be highly dependent on the depth of their defense. Personally I’d like to see Theo start because Stoke will enjoy the ball played in the air too much. They will want to play football and having a pacy frontline to constantly harry them may be our best bet.

    We need this win to actually kickstart our season. The first 4 games were lackluster at best, and showed just how much teams don’t want to beat us, but rather don’t want to lose against us. If we’re going to be a team that they don’t want to lose against, we have to put some fear in them that they WILL lose in order to take advantage of them being on the back foot. If every team comes believing they can get a draw if they defend deep and maybe nick it if they are good on the counter then we will sure as hell struggle. We need to get them shaking that if they drop too deep, we’ll open ’em up. That’ll make them reconsider bus parking.

  10. @thirdmanJW, i know the endless luxuries of managing Arsenal, No pressure for trophies barring the 4th place cup lol, I was really impressed with Joel at the world cup playing as a Lone striker for his countr i think he really exceeded himself, ideally if he had been given a chance i think it would have done wonders for his confidence but just stuck on the bench not getting any plating time is not going to do any player any good especially when i feel its unwarranted.

    its a world of different opinions and the above is mine ppl may disagree, but im pretty sure its unanimous on Wenger Stubborn arrogant personified , lets not go into his scrooge bah humbug looks and penny pinching lol

  11. It’s exciting time again! The obligatory international break is over. Of course, Arsenal are poised to pounce on Stoke and pound them soft, irrespective if the problems they give be old or new is no concern of the Gunners. The Potters run on Game App Data plan of 2G which operates on physicality and brutality. A son is not different from his father as he inherits his father’s sins. The sins of Tony Pulis’s Stoke are since inherited by Mark Hughes Stoke. Therefore, the Boss and the Gunners should not expect a migration from 2G App to 3G App by Stoke despite the change of baton there. If there be anything Mark Hughes knows the Boss hates, is the application of a 2G playing system. And that’s what Mark Hughes has told the Potters to apply against the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium this Saturday. However, thank God. The Boss has migrated the Gunners Game App Data Plan from 3G App to 4G (LTE) App after our away game to Newcastle. This App operates on the superior prolific dynamic game digital display that overwrite both the 2G & 3G Apps. For this App superiority of the Gunners over that of the Stoke’s 2G App, am putting all my money on the Gunners to overrun the Potters with dazzling speeds with a full time score line of: AFC 5-0 SCFC

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