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July 2021

Liverpool v Arsenal, match preview

By Miles Rackham

I couldn’t even be brought to think of a snazzy title for this preview, yesterday has got me down a bit, not because we were as quiet as a mouse with cats around, but because everyone seemed to spend spend spend. I am not that disappointed that we didn’t sign anyone like some fans are for two reasons.

The first is because I haven’t forgotten about a lot of our players who are returning from long term injuries. Frimpong played very well against Boca Juniors in the 2011 Emirates Cup, before going out to loan and getting badly injured. He is going to be able to replace Song in midfield, if he calms down and keeps his temperament under control. And Wilshere, obviously.  look up highlight of him on youtube and you will remember how brilliant is, and also Rosicky, who we fell back in love with last season.

The second reason, is because you may say that we had a weaker team last season, and no one knows the team better than Arsene, and if he feels that the team didn’t need any new additions, or that any possible new additions prices we ridiculously high, then it may be better for us to have no news signings. We thought that we wouldn’t get Champions League last season, but we did, so in Arsene we trust.

So we had another goalless draw. One major major major positive from this is that, even though we didn’t have our first choice goalkeeper, and only one first choice centre backs, we didn’t concede against a team that have not failed to score against us in the last years.

This really does show us the impact that Steve Bould is having on the defence overall. As we have been told, he is like a new signing, which is so true. Last season we conceded a total of 49 goals, that is only a few less than Swansea, a newly promoted team. But a lot of the goals weren’t scored by three of the top four team, except for the game at Old Trafford. One from Man City, four from the spuds, and ten from Man United, so where did the other 34 goals come from? Silly defensive mistakes against lower league teams. This is something Steve Bould has seemingly helped cut out, which will help us against Liverpool and in every other game this season. A major asset in challenging for trophies.

We had some good chances against Stoke, we showed movement, and the team seemed to have a good understanding of each other, considering we have four different players in the squad (Mannone as well as the three new signings).

I believe that the team has shown some really positive signs of improving, just the three attacking new boys need to mix together a bit more, along with Walcott, Gervinho and soon too, the Ox.  They also need to create an understanding with Arteta and who ever else is played in midfield.

Liverpool have not been the team to beat so far though. They were, in a word, humiliated by West Brom on the opening day of the season, but then had a good game against Man City in an attacking sense, although it ended 2-2, with both City goals due to Liverpool defensive mistakes. This is something that we can exploit and as a result would back us on

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Tevez was set up by the Liverpool centre back Skrtel by an awful back pass, and anyone of our players would have scored the chance, so if they do this again, we could be on to win.

I really can see us winning this game, and think that Cazorla will be able to dominate the midfield, and with the help of Arteta, and Diaby will have to keep tabs on Gerard. They don’t have that many options upfront, and indeed one of their goals against City was a freekick, so open play may not be their strongest point against us.

Liverpool will go out to win the game, but it depends of Brendan Rodgers attitude towards Arsenal; are we a team they should beat, or a team that a draw would be good against? He will know, as we do, that the fixture has a very very colourful history. From Micky Thomas grabbing the winning in 89, Arshavin scoring four at Anfield, to Eboue giving away a penalty in the 110th minute at the Emirates.

One massive boost for Arsenal is that Koscielny is returning to the squad, which is something that all Arsenal fans will have a sigh of relief about. A quality player last season, he is a major asset in defence, and has been said to be  turning into the best centre back in the country, and possibly Europe.

Depending on whether or not Jenkinson will be played and if Scz is fit, I believe that the team will look something like this-



Jenkinson / Koscielny   Mertesaker / Koscielny   Vermaelen   Gibbs

Arteta   Diaby


Oxlade – Chamberlain   Giroud   Podolski

I believe that the score could be a 2-0 if we are lucky, or 2-1, but if we concede a goal, it won’t really matter.  I know it is going to be a tough game at Anfield, and this game could kick start our season, depending on if we get a decent result.

Come on Arsenal, and in Arsene we trust.


The club that changed football


60 comments to Liverpool v Arsenal, match preview

  • akasuna

    Thanks miles for the post. COYG!!

  • Good post, Miles. Big thanks.

    Wenger regularly states that he won’t purchase a player who is no better than the player to be replaced, as that would be a pointless purchase. Quite right too.

    In the case of van Persie of course, that’s a somewhat different case, as he’s undoubtedly top drawer. However, buying two-for-the-price-of-one was a decent decision on Wenger’s part.

    The problem remains that we need a quality Defensive Midfielder, and those who suggest we don’t need one – citing Arteta and Diaby as competent in that department, are wrong.
    Coquelin needs another year’s experience; Frimpong needs two more years.
    “But Arteta and Diaby did a good job in the first two games didn’t they, Big Al?”
    Yeah, against two inferior sides that didn’t really test us. The true tests are to come against the top seven or eight clubs, and THAT’S when we’ll be found wanting. And some of those games will be ‘six-pointers’.
    Hope I’m wrong of course, but unfortunately I’m sure I’m to be proved right.

    I think Wenger has his eye on two, maybe three, possibles who either weren’t available at this particular time, or who perhaps, as you’ve already noted, may have been priced too high.

    Rather than buy an ‘OK’ DM, he’s having to wait a little longer to get his preferred choice. January? I doubt it; Wenger’s stated before that he doesn’t like dealing in that window, so I guess he won’t buy his man ’til next Summer.

    Sadly, I think we’ll pay the price (no pun intended)!

  • Ong Bing

    Good post Miles. Thanks.

    I am afraid, little boy inside me said that we will win tonight.

    Arsenal will score 3 tonight, 1 from Poldi, and I don’t know where the other 2 come from, maybe Santi and Gerv.

    Arsenal has not yet gel, but if we meet offensive team, we will scores.

    In our first 2 games, our captain not forwards too much, maybe Steve Bould not allowed him?

  • walter

    Vermaelen not running forward as he was used to is the influence of Bould I think.
    This means that from a defensive point of view we are stronger, but it also might be one of the reasons we didn’t score yet? When Vermaelen goes forward the opposition know he can score and maybe mark him tighter and that would open a bit of space for the others.

    Well a bit gutted that I cannot see this game live as I have my own game to do. But will be able to see it afterwards.

  • ARSENAL 13

    I have the gut feeling we’ll score today and concede none. AND also I would pick Ramsey over Diaby today. I think Diaby is a couple of weeks or month away. As the confidence builds, he will be a great asset for ARSENAL.

  • ubatgoonergooner

    Yeah we should partner Vermaelen with Koscielny to deal with Suarez. I expect Liverpool to be more dangerous at set pieces this year as they have lesser strikers after Bellamy, Kuyt and Carroll left. Yes Chamberlain would be a better deal than Gervinho on the wings as the latter seems to dribble to long when he should pass the ball.

  • Ong Bing

    I agree, is better played Kos than Per today. We need speedy defender, today’s game will be fast moving ball game.

  • Damien Luu

    @Walter: I don’t know, may be Verminator will go forward again when Kos comes back. I think he didn’t dare to do that in the last games because he knew Mert isn’t fast enough to cover for him. Or may be that’s Bould’s influence. Let’s see.

    Anyway, I believe we will win this game and of course have our first goals.

  • Sammy The Snake

    Let’s not underestimate this game. Any result is possible, but of course we all want our first win.

  • bjtgooner

    Five or so minutes in & first dive to Suarez

  • Ong Bing

    I told you!
    I told you!


  • Sammy The Snake

    Big man crush on Podolski!

  • Ong Bing

    Oh no!
    It must be 2!

    Giroud miss it!

  • Ong Bing

    Santi! Santi!

    It is too good to be true!

  • Ong Bing

    You never scores alone!

    Where is the third?
    Bring on Gerv!

  • Ong Bing

    1st win, 3 clean sheets in the row, 2 last game we played with 3rd choice GK.

  • Limpar

    Great preview, spot on predictions
    Well done
    We haven’t looked that good as a team for a long long time
    Oooh diaby

  • dan

    Did anyone notice how hopeless Gerrard was and is? I’ve been saying for a long time Gerrard is the most over rated player in the history of EPL, the leagues joke but their legend!!!

  • Sammy The Snake

    Is this the twilight zone?!!

    3 clean sheets in a row, good teamwork all around, and Mr. Webber doesn’t screw the Arsenal! Wow.

    Great win.

  • Sammy The Snake

    And the only team not to have conceded a goal so far. Good on Gunners!

  • Woolwich Peripatetic

    A good line in the Guardian MBM of the Southampton game:
    Both United and City look defensively vulnerable, while Arsenal are yet to concede a goal.
    Add Chelsea to that list too.
    I can’t wait for some proper analysis of how our defending has changed, my suspicion would be that our forwards now buy time for the defence to get organised, so in hindsight, replacing RvP and Song may not have been a bad idea.

  • bjtgooner

    Good team effort. Did the Verminator get a knock – other than the stamp from Suarez?

  • Limpar

    and the obligitory scissors follow through from gerrard

  • Asif

    Whoo…3 clean sheets…2 of our newcomers scored…our deadwood Abou…call him deadwood anymore!!! I can’t believe that was us defending…no faux pas! Wow…this Arsenal looks good!!!

  • Woolwich Peripatetic

    Gerrard has a 100% assist success rate with Thierry Henry, despite never playing for the same team, that tells you everything you need to know about his “passing” ability.

  • Nakew


    The team lineup was perfect. Every one’s performance was excellent. Diaby was awesome. Giroud will come good in time. He needs to be patient.

  • Sincere apologies if you have tried to get onto this site and not been able to for a while, we had some technical issues, but they have been resolved.

  • It is not just that Gerrard is poor, I think it is the lack of options in the forward line.

    As for Diaby, I don’t know how many people came on this site and said that any team that relies on him is doomed, but I thought he was superb.

  • Limpar

    Gibbs looked a top full back today

  • Ong Bing

    What a karma, our ex captain get penalty for his new club, he takes it and… miss it!

  • Realistic Gooner

    Diaby was magnificent- along with half a dozen others. Great performance. Giroud will come good if we can improve our crosses.

  • Ong Bing

    I hate to say, but Robin’s wages is not too expensive (for this week).

    Damn, stupid Southampton!

  • Shard

    Ong Bing,

    Yeah, but ManU are a one man team no? 🙂

  • Woolwich Peripatetic

    OptaParody just tweeted about RvP carrying his team. Not that far from the truth. God help them in international week, we all know what happens to Robin in meaningless friendlies, let alone competitive matches.

    You start to wonder if the “brand maintenance mechanisms” will be turned off if the teams that aren’t United continue to outstrip them? How low do they have to finish and for how many seasons?

  • Goona Gal

    What can I say about the performance, except……WENNGARRR OUT!!!

  • dan

    Great team work, Diaby/Carzola/AOC/Verminator/Podolski/Arteta played great, however Jenkinson was just as good and will definitely get better.

  • Goona Gal

    Diaby was great and getting stronger every game, building on the glimmers of hope he gave me during preseason. it would be great if he could stay fit at least until Wilshere or Rosicky returned. I too like AW wished he had’nt been called up for international duty, but then I also hope Alex OC & Verm will not go either now too as they took a few hits.

    Actually it would be nice if all of our players could have a rest.

  • Goona Gal

    @ dan, If I may, I would like to talk up few others. Mannone is a good GK whom I have watched play a few times for Hull and he put in MoTM performances for them and then when he has played for Arsenal recently, he was below par. I note his growing confidence and composure in goal. He was alert when needed, made good saves and looked better than Reina in goal. Also Ramsey was good sub choice defensively, his fresh legs pressured Liverpool in midfield, making things difficult for them to find a way through.

  • Shakabula Gooner

    Great efforts all round! In terms of players that pleasantly surprised with their quality and grit my choices are: Diaby, AOC and Jenkinson.
    Girould had a poor game…partly because he is having the most difficult time getting the right ball from his team mates and getting his positioning and work rate right relative to the overall flow of play. I really pray that this period of adjustment doesn’t get so long as to damage his confidence.

  • LRV

    @ARSENAL 13 at 11:29am

    What was it you said about Diaby? Some Arsenal fans will never learn.

  • Paul"the Gooner"

    Jamie Redknapp!…. off.Last week after the Stoke match he said Polodski and Girould were not in the same class as Judas.They were half the player he is.They are not as good, that is obvious, but give us another dimension.Girould does work very hard, and he did close there defenders down really well.
    This has shut a few people up,not the tosser on talkshite,Durham.HE is the biggest ever arsenal hater.

  • Limpar

    The team looked a lot better with chamberlain & poldolski on the wings. Both players can come inside & interchange with the central players with a better understanding than gervinho has done & Walcott is capable of . Other 2 are more direct but our game seems to become disjointed when they ( walcott gerv) both play out wide

  • elkieno

    Diaby was (hate to say it) Viera-esque in his play last night. We still have a long way to go to get to our best form we know we have, but it’s a long season etc.
    My Mrs was sitting next to me while watching last night, she was occasionally talking about some crap which I was not listening to at all, but when I would turn to her and say ‘see him, we bought him from etc etc’ she would laugh and say to me that my voice is shaking and I sound very nervous!
    My voice was shaking indeed and I couldn’t really talk. I didn’t realise that when Arsenal are playing I am very much useless to life and family. I started talking to her about Diaby and how injured he always is/was, but how utterly brilliant he is as well and if he continues in this vein of form, then he will definitely stay at the club, unlike some other Knob Jockey we all loved.
    Anyway, during all this, I stammered, mumbled, forgot what was saying and then gave up until half time not because we were playing Liverpool, but because this game was soo important to our season. If we were to lose I could take it (not like losing to Spurs or UTD) but as long as our team starts to gel and show signs of what we can do, then a loss is not that bad at this time of season.
    HOWEVER, a victory, a couple of good goals from the new guys and another clean sheet is damn well excellent result for this new side and not what I was thinking would happen so it does a lot for confidence boosting. I only hope that when we play the big teams we are all fit and ready to go. I remember last year when we were on a roll of victories we were looking good for UTD game, but Fergie ‘had a word to some managers’ and by the time we were to play them, we had some injuries and were not at our best, just a bit suspect isn’t it?
    Also 1 last thing, is UTD not a one man team?
    if the media don’t start saying this, then the bias is 100 proved. Are they really going to assume the role of ‘we’ll score more than them’ attitude?
    What if RvP gets injured?
    Unfortunately, he won’t get injured anymore he is a man now and knows how to avoid the challenges, plus Fergie will protect him as much as he can, except International coming up and Rooney inured for a few weeks, might break him, but probably not. They will jammy it and win it again this year, assholes!

  • Damien Luu

    @elkieno: Who knows, a man could injure himself after all, so Manure fans should keep their fingers crossed. It’s very interesting seeing they only collect our trash, paying a high price for it, and put all their hope in it 🙂

  • elkieno

    Damien Luu: Yes I never thought of it like that!
    Buy our trash, pay big, invest all hopes into it and then hope it doesnt break. All the while we hope it does.
    I will not go thru this season wishing injury or form failure on the dutchman, I really dont care about him anymore, just another bloke playing for that mob.
    I care for Arsenal and cant wait till we are in full flight!

  • ARSENAL 13

    @ LRV 11:29 pm

    I think you just read half of what I had to say.

    I still think Diaby is a couple of weeks off. AS his confidence grows he will get stronger. He is a better player than what he had show us at Anfield.

  • Walter

    As long as nobody now kicks Diaby to shit again (because a lot of his injuries have been the result of reckless and dangerous challenges allowed by crap referees) he could become the strong player Wenger knows he can be.

  • ARSENAL 13

    AND guess what….ESPN had Stewert Robson for commentary.

    According to him despite Liverpool being the better in the first half …. are you nuttsssss. Better team??….

    AND Poldi what a team player. Helping Gibbs in defense.

    Arteta, Poldi forming a 6 man defense…..great JOB.

  • dan

    @Goona Gal

    Right you are, Mannone put in a great performance.

  • Shard

    Robson also didn’t think Skrtel(?)’s tackle from behind on Diaby was actually from the side and hence not a yellow card, and basically accused Wenger of moaning all the time about tackles on his players. Yeah..Well fair, balanced and insightful as always.. or is the word I’m looking for spiteful? Glad we’re rid of him, and Adrian Clarke’s segment on Arsenal Player is better anyway. Also because unlike Robson, Clarke doesn’t seem like he likes the sound of his own voice so much.

  • Stuart

    With regard to Stewart Robson, I think it’s best to just ignore the c*nt, sorry for the language but it’s the nicest way to describe him.

  • bjtgooner

    Getting rid of Stewart Robson was probably the equivalent of getting a disruptive player out of the dressing room. Good riddance. Anyone (apart from Robson) with a pair of functioning eyeballs could see that Arsenal had much more quality than Liverpool.

  • Brickfields Gunners

    WOOO HOOOOO !!!! Yes ! Yes ! Yes ! An away win ,no goals conceded in 3 games and an all round good performance .What else could we ask for ? More of the same please !
    Take a bow lads and come back refreshed when we resume .Damn these internationals !Hope none of ours ( hint ,wink wink)
    get injured !
    Up the Gunners !

  • There are people out there(who keep posting here) who can not even get ashamed{feeling shame,distressed or embarrassed by feeling of guilt,FOOLISHNESS and disgrace} they keep opening there jaws even with out blushing them,i pity them because as always we prevail.They say we are doomed but post the next day that we are good! Keep it up gunners and keep the fire burning.

  • novicegooner

    We were compact when we’re defending. We didn’t look nervous or desperate when we’re defending. We’re looking calm and confident.

    Signing of the season? Steve Bould!

  • Limpar

    Bould deserves credit but I believe having an unchanged back 4 and a full pre season for last years new signings ie jenkinson , metre stacker , plus vermealan coming back to top form after injury has something to do with it too

  • Limpar

    Meter stacker ! Mertesacker

  • Stuart

    Thanks to Dara of Great Red North (Liverpool Blog) for publishing a request for refs to join us.