The debt machine comes to town. Arsenal v MU preview

By Phil Gregory

Despite the title being seemingly out of reach, United’s visit to Arsenal still holds some importance for our season. A win here is surely key is we are to try and regain second from Chelsea – I expect them to lose at Old Trafford – and second would represent progress from last season. While the title of runners-up brings no prizes, as long as we are moving forward year on year the wider support will surely back Wenger’s vision and have patience.

On the injury front, Vermaelen is fit to return but “will not play” according to Wenger, so no chance of a bench appearance for the Belgian. Diaby is also out, giving us a largely clean bill of health. United are in a similar situation, and it seems that every Gooners favourite player Fletcher will not be involved.


Sagna Djourou Koscielny Clichy

Wilshere Song


Walcott Van Persie Nasri

Szcznesy continues in goal, laying down a marker his claim to the number 1 jersey for next season. Despite the return of Vermaelen in the reserves the United game will surely come too soon for him and the back four will likely be unchanged. Further forward, Song and Wilshere shield the midfield with Fabregas playmaking.

Up front it’s very much a case of as you were thanks to the lack of injuries. Van Persie plays through the middle, flanked by Walcott and Nasri.

We’ll probably see United play their usual anti-Arsenal 451, likely something like below given Giggs will be rested according to Ferguson:

Van Der Sar

Rafael Vidic Ferdinand Evra


Valencia Park Anderson Nani


Their back five is certainly solid, there’s no surprises there. The big frustration for United fans is the dearth of creative quality in midfield. While that is true, both Carrick and Anderson can pick a pass and that midfield three is fairly solid. Valencia is an excellent winger and tees up Rooney well from crosses though doesn’t really weigh in with the goals.

Nani on the other flank is the most productive United player this season, right up at the top of the goalscoring and assists charts. He’d have been my pick for player of the season despite being a fairly despicable person on the pitch with antics worthy of Barcelona. That aside, he’s certainly one to be wary of, though I’m happy that he’ll be up against Sagna who is certainly a reliable defender.

United certainly have an effective model for beating Arsenal, we can’t really argue with one win in 11 or whatever the stats are. That said, United are nothing special away from home so there is cause for optimism amongst Gooners. As long as there is a belief that we can win amongst the team we are capable of beating United, though I’m less confident given our recent run of results. That said, I’ll stick my neck out with a 2-1 to the Arsenal.

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13 Replies to “The debt machine comes to town. Arsenal v MU preview”

  1. Very important day for us Gooners. We’ll have to step up our game.

  2. Isnt it strange that last time we beat Man Utd, Diaby, Denilson and Bendtner were all in the starting 11, we surely must have a better chance today when they’re not!

  3. I would be absolutely amazed if we lose, I feel strongly that we will either win or Draw.

    I heard talk of TV5 starting???

    Surely all the pressure has got be on man U because if they lose today they have chelsea who seem to be getting all the decisions lately.

    I want SAF to have to have the Heimlich maneuver performed on him after swallowing his gum because he cant believe how crap his team is compared to arsenal

  4. im usually positive. but cant see an arsenal win. soz. the players know if we lose this were 4th. and we all know what happens in crucial games. the pressure is too much. any lax attitude 4 the 90 from any player and manures directness will kill us.
    please god make me wrong. i beg you.

  5. It is an interesting turn of phrase “…their usual anti-Arsenal 451”. As much as I loathe him, Fergie has got his tactics right against us more times then I care to remember. To me it is Arsène Wenger’s biggest failing – his inability to mix it up tactically against teams that know how to beat our style of football.

    Hopefully Fergie will be outmanoeuvred by AW today – and forever more!!

    Come on you Gunners!

  6. I think we will score 1:0 or 2:1 up in the 1st half and then we will lose 2:3 to Man U on last 10 minutes like happen to Bolton and Liverpool. The team are mentally and physically strong on the 1st 65 minutes. After that, we will break down physically and mentally specially our back 4. That is what happen in this season. I am not going to watch the game because I have already known the result. I can imagine what the front page will be after game and also AW will try to blame referee and lose a couple of players after game. He will say the referee make some decision against his team and we do create some chances but we don’t take the chance…something like that. He won’t say about our defend is too weak. Does it sound familiar? It happens almost evey game when we lose. I am tired on this

  7. Sagna a reliable defender you got to be joking ,a ball watching
    clown who gets caught out of position game after game ,costing his team big time ?

  8. Samuel, Mr. Venger: You’re blinkered.
    SAGNA ROCKS TODAY! Cannot be lost like you two.

  9. I really can’t see the point of making these predictions as to the final score and how the game will go. One runs the risk of being made to look a bit, or a lot, of a dickhead. See above.

  10. Now we beat the biggest spending clubs in reach in one season, we should draw an inspiration from this and try to lose none or less games in the next season.

    Beating 1) City; 2) Chelsea; 3) Barcelona; and 4) Manchester United are the achievements of the season. It will teach the team how to beat big teams.

    But losing to 1) WBA; 2) Newcastle; 3) Bolton; 4) Braga; and 5) Shakhtar; 6) Birmingham; and having leads and letting them slip against Liverpool, Spurs, Sunderland, Wigan and Layton Oriente, and underestimating Leeds and Ipswitch Town is something to address next year.

    So far, we’ve done well against bigger teams, time to study how to beat technically-not-so-good teams.

    In other words; we should find a solution for the Anti-Arsenal tactics…

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