Okay Arsenal fans, there is no way that we can say that we wanted to be drawn against the Catalan club Barcelona for the knockout phase of the Champions League. They are the holders after all and with the fearsome front three of Messi, Neymar and Suarez breaking all sorts of records last year, Barca managed to also win La Liga and the Spanish cup to give them a terrific treble.
So the Gunners are right up against it, no doubt. But we should not assume that the last 16 will be as far as we go for a sixth season in a row. Barcelona are a top class side and they are rightly one of the favourites, but they are not unbeatable. ...........Read more
After Arsenal pulled off the great escape in Greece last night, Arsene Wenger spoke about the game and suggested that getting through when all the odds had been stacked against us could mean that this will be our lucky year in the Champions League.
I am not too sure about that but you could definitely say that we were due a bit of good luck. After all we were handed a group with one of the big favourites Bayern Munich and then the only luck we had in the first two games was bad. I still feel that Giroud’s red card was very harsh, there were deflected goals and we just did not get the rub of the green. ...........Read more
Arsene Wenger was clearly delighted with his Arsenal team last night and he had every reason to be as, to a man, the Gunners stepped up and put in a real shift to claim a first away win over Olympiacos and pip the Greek champions into second spot in the Champions League group.
Wenger hailed the performance as a real team effort, which it certainly was, but he also had some extra words of praise of the hat-trick hero Olivier Giroud. The France international striker probably felt that he owed his manager as well, after getting sent off away to Dinamo Zagreb in the first group game and helping to get Arsenal into the tough position we were in. ...........Read more
Well Arsenal fans we did it! Did you really believe? The players certainly did and I have to give Arsene Wenger full credit for getting the Gunners in the right frame of mind. This result and they way it was done could well give the team a huge boost that sees go from strength to strength in the Premier League as well as the Champions League.
Even after a tough start when Olympiacos put us under real pressure, the players stood firm and never let the hostile atmosphere get under their skin. So once Arsenal had started to take the game under control about halfway through the first half, we never let it go. ...........Read more
While a lot of the talk and emphasis from Arsenal as we prepare for the crunch clash with Olympiacos in Greece tonight has been on the attacking side of our game, the Gunners cannot abandon the other side of the game. So it will be a big night for the back four and the keeper Petr Cech because an Olympiacos goal means we have to score at least three times.
But with all the focus on Arsenal creating and scoring goals against the Greek champions, I think the mist important position in our team is that of the defensive midfielder. I assume it will be Mathieu Flamini with Aaron Ramsey in the box-to-box role and it is vital that the Frenchman has a good game. ...........Read more
We all know that Arsenal are up against the odds tonight, as we prepare for a must win game away to Olympiacos. The manager and players are no exception although they know that they will only have themselves to blame for the way we set about the first two group games.
While our France international centre forward accepts that it will require a Herculean effort from the Gunners tonight, Olivier Giroud also spoke with real belief about Arsenal being able to do it and prove the doubters wrong. His comments reported in the Daily Mail also alluded to the current injury crisis at the club. ...........Read more
Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal players know full well what they have to do against Olympiacos in Greece tonight. Only a win will do and we must get enough goals as well so the tactics should be fairly simple and it should make for an exciting game from the Gunners.
The manager does know that Arsenal have a tough task though and that history is against us after we lost all of the three previous away games against the Greek club. But Wenger was bullish ahead of the game and wanted to channel the great Champions League away games we have seen in recent years, such as beating the great Bayern Munich in Germany and nearly rescuing our UCL dream away to Monaco last year. ...........Read more
Arsenal have a number of reasons for needing to win the Champions League game against Dinamo Zagreb this evening, with a little bit of revenge for the defeat in Croatia probably more important to the Arsenal fans that to our manager.
But Arsene Wenger knows that the Gunners need to win to have any hope of staying in the Champions League past the group stage or even of having Europa League games on Thursdays and he has said that he would take Europe´s second club competition very seriously if we were to drop into it, so I expect a strong Arsenal line up to take to the Emirates pitch tonight. ...........Read more
Whether the game tonight ends up helping Arsenal to salvage our Champions League campaign this season, which has been left teetering on the brink of disaster after the Gunners lost three of the first four games in our group, remains to be seen.
All Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal team can do is to win the game tonight, hope that Bayern Munich give the Greek side Olympiacos a good kicking and then hope to do the same when we travel to Athens for the final game. ...........Read more
Arsenal lost Hector Bellerin last weekend, and Arsene Wenger also substituted Gabriel in place of Koscielny last night. Result? 5-1 defeat to the Germans. Would it have been any different if Koss and Bells were playing? I doubt it!
Arsene Wenger was not happy with the defensive performance at all!