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Qarabag v Arsenal: bizarre squad spotted by national newspaper. We can’t be that daft can we?

by Bulldog Drummond

There is the strangest thing on the Sky site today (at least at the moment I write this) in which they have a page which they proclaim as covering the recent results of Arsenal and Qarabag.

What it should be called however is a “selection of results from the two clubs with no real link between what we have chosen in each case” or something like that.   For Qarabag they only contain Champions League and Europa League results.  For Arsenal they include Premier League, Europa League and League Cup.

So what, I wonder has caused them to get into this mess?  Surely they are not letting computers set up their match previews without anyone checking?  Whatever next!

But that seems to be where we are, as the squad noted by the Mirror proclaims.  But more on that in a moment.   Here first of all is the real list of Qarabag games of late…

Date Comp Home Score Away Res
14/09/18 League Qarabağ 1 – 0 Sumqayıt W
20/09/18 Europa Sporting CP 2 – 0 Qarabağ L
23/09/18 League Qarabağ 4 – 1 Qəbələ W
26/09/18 League Qarabağ 3 – 2 Zira W
29/09/18 League Sabah 0 – 2 Qarabağ W
04/10/18 Europa Qarabağ 17 : 55 Arsenal

So they are winning in the league and lost in the Europa.    Arsenal are as we know winning in the League, the League Cup, the Checkatrade Trophy, the Europa League and the Under 23s league.

Now I know you will find it hard to believe but I am actually not an expert on Azerbaijan footie so I might be wrong on this but the chart that I found on line only has eight teams in their league with the table looking like this…

# Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 6 5 1 0 13 4 +9 16
2 6 5 1 0 13 3 +10 16
3 6 3 1 2 8 6 +2 10
4 6 3 1 2 5 6 -1 10
5 6 2 1 3 5 10 -5 7
6 6 1 2 3 7 9 -2 5
7 6 0 2 4 5 10 -5 2
8 6 0 1 5 5 13 -8 1

If I have got this wrong please correct me.  But as far as I can see Qarabağ are neck and neck at the top of the league but Neftçi have the better goal difference and yet are shown in second place.  It is all a bit too confusing.

Even more confusing is the fact that the web site I found had three stadia listed for the club, but I think this might be a picture of where  the game is being played.  I think it holds about 35,000.

Again if I have got totally the wrong place do tell.

We know we will not have Henrikh Mkhitaryan as Arsenal chose not to apply for a special work permit.

This is because Armenians can’t go to Azerbaijan but Uefa rules say that political restraint of player movements is not allowable.  But the reception Mkhitaryan would have got made it something he has chosen not to do, quite reasonably in my view.

Hector Bellerin, Alexandre Lacazette and Mesut Ozil were all spotted at the airport for the trip to Baku this Wednesday morning.  It takes just under six hours and is a journey of around 4000km.

Obviously we expect to have Bernd Leno in goal – oh and here’s another thought from Sky, “Arsenal will look to maintain their 100 per cent record in the Europa League”.  OK: played one won one.

Iwobi is expected to be in the team and Monreal could finally get a break after being forced to play in every game because of the Left Back Crisis.  Sead Kolasinac and Stephan Lichtsteiner should play at full back.

I haven’t seen a full list of players on the plane except for the bonkers one from the Daily Mirror below, but I would anticipate the players omitted from the under 23 game that we took in on Monday such as Eddie and Smith Rowe, could be in the squad.

However the Mirror says it has the full squad

Leno, Bellerin, Lichtsteiner, Holding, Mustafi, Papastathopoulos, Kolasinac, Monreal, Xhaka, Elneny, Torreira, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Iwobi, Ozil, Welbeck, Lacazette, Aubameyang

So what makes me think that the Mirror is simply making it up and claiming to have evidence it doesn’t have?   Look nowhere beyond the fact that there is no backup goalkeeper.  Emiliano Martinez is surely going to be on the plane.  So I am going to suggest that the Mirror’s list of players is in fact a little bot having its way with the information checked, as so often is the case with the Mirror, by not a single living soul.

 

 

5 comments to Qarabag v Arsenal: bizarre squad spotted by national newspaper. We can’t be that daft can we?

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Emery had looked not wanting to take chances in Arsenal Cup games this season, hence the strong Gunners team he has played against 2 lower club opposition teams thus far.

    I will therefore not be surprised if he takes a very strong squad to Baku Azerbaijan to confront Qarabag FK in the Europa tomorrow night. Besides, Arsenal are on a 7 match winning run which should not be compromised by taking a team that is full of youth players from the Arsenal U23 squad to play the match. For, if Arsenal does that, it will amount to taking a gamble. Against Qarabag, Arsenal don’t know how the game will pan out. But if the game pans out strongly, Arsenal who went to Baku with a strong team likely comprising many of their first teamers would have been forearmed with the strong side the took to Baku to play the match. And play the side to perform strongly in the game and claim all the 3 points at stake in the match to keep their winning run running indefinitely. Hmmm.

    My envisaged Emery’s Arsenal 4-2-3-1 starts and the 7 Gunners he has on the bench for the match are below.

    Starts:
    Leno
    Lichtsteiner Holding Mustafi Kolasinac
    Guendouzi Elneny
    Ramsey Rowe Iwobi
    Welbeck.

    Bench:
    Martinez Bellerin Sokratis Monreal Ozil Aubameyang Nkethia.

    Torreira and Xhaka stay behind. And I think Arsenal according to media reports will be back to London in the early morning hours on Friday around 4 a.m. And will train on Saturday to prepare for assaulting Fulham on Sunday in the PL at Graven Cottage. But despite the 8000 miles journey to Baku and back, and couple with the likely game fatigue the Gunners will likely be suffering from for their not to have rested for at least 3 days but 2, Arsenal will find the extra motivation strength in them to beat Fulham and leave the winning run in all games intact.

  • Gord

    Ramsey didn’t travel, his wife is due to have twins soon (or at least a baby). I hope for the best with the childbirth.

  • Samuel Akinsola Adebosin

    Admini, sorry for my duplicate comment posting of my above comment but edited that I’ve posted.

    had Emery looked not wanting to take chances in Arsenal Cup games this season, hence the strong Gunners team he has played against 2 lower club opposition teams thus far in Cup games?

    I will therefore not be surprised if he has taken a very strong squad to Baku Azerbaijan to confront Qarabag FK in the Europa tomorrow night. Besides, Arsenal are on a 7 match winning run which should not be compromised by taking a team that is full of youth players from the Arsenal U23 squad to play the match and win it to extend their winning run to 8. For, if Arsenal does that, it will amount to taking a gamble by them. Against Qarabag, Arsenal don’t know how the game will pan out. But if the game pans out strongly, Arsenal who went to Baku with a strong team likely comprising many of their first teamers would have been forearmed with the strong side they took to Baku to play the match. And will play the strong side in the game to perform strongly in the match to beat Qarabag and claim all the 3 points at stake in the match and preserved their match winning run to keep running indefinitely. Hmmm.

    My envisaged Arsenal 4-2-3-1 starts and 7 man Gunners bench I think Emery is likely to start and have on the bench for the match are as below.

    Starts:
    Leno
    Lichtsteiner Holding Mustafi Kolasinac
    Guendouzi Elneny
    Ramsey Rowe Iwobi
    Welbeck.

    Bench:
    Martinez Bellerin Sokratis Monreal Ozil Aubameyang Nkethia.

    Torreira and Xhaka stay behind. And I think Arsenal, according to media reports will be back to London in the early morning hours on Friday around 4 a.m. Having traveled to Baku today. And the Gunners will train the following day Saturday to prepare for assaulting Fulham on Sunday in the PL at Graven Cottage. But despite their 8000 miles journey to Baku and back to London, and couple with the likely game fatigue the Gunners could be suffering from playing Qarabag, and for their not to have rested for at least 3 days but 2 to recover after playing against Qarabag before they play against Fulham, Arsenal will find the extra motivation strength in them to beat Fulham to leave their winning run in all games intact.

  • Menace

    Gord, I think SAA is twins because he always posts his parables twice. As paddy used to say the first was to be sure & the second to be sure to be sure.

  • U know who

    1 player out Sam, over 90% accuracy. A interesting switch of formation. I’m not sure about using both full backs in one game midweek. But covering Kolosinac with Monreal 9s very sens9ble and adds mobility to the back line.

    Holding pairs with Sokratis and with luck he can hold that place for the weekend.

    Glad to see first for three players 2 new Arsene recruits and yet another class attribute out of the academy, credit to our youth scouts and development personnel. That boy has plenty about him. Move over Deli.

    Incidentally not only was Sam almost totally correct but the line up is nearly totally my EL selection with Mustarfi getting sidelined so Unai can test a switch at the back and try once again to implement his formational changes.

    Since I have not seen the highlights and didn’t watch again, can’t say yet how this affected play in a game we were always likely to dominate.

    Bear gets his clean sheet making a few good saves to boot! Fate is d8ctating everything, she and my b*tch karma have something to say these days.

    Also I think Mikhi travelling would have been good for tensions of a religious nature. I’d have gone and demolished them personally. But without the squad balance was near perfect. Like 9 said that b team can play; they have a collectively incredibly high creativity level and freedom to implement it.

    First IX pat attention. Now focus for a few warm up games before a head to head we can state our case with.

    I won’t miss Liverpool for sure. I need to see of Paul knows anyone who can get me into Fulham for us this weekend.

    Scheduling oversight.

    Meanwhile Henry is touted for Championship Villa; perfect start the hard way, in a league possibly harder to escape than the Premier league is to win if you don’t quite have the credentials. Good luck, it’s the perfect way to stay relevant and challenge yourself. O think they will respond very well to living legend. Can he adjust his tactics quickly game to game and rotate effectively for 2 game a week weeks? I think he can make it look good.

    Hurry up Thierry; he said qhot sky earlier but still hard of hearing.

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