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Friday, 15 February 2013

Arsenal: How can they beat Bayern Munich?


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Sqf Vinay

Arsenal may be preparing for this weekend's FA Cup clash with Blackburn Rovers, but they will definitely have one eye firm focused on Tuesday night's Champions League match with German giants Bayern Munich.

Yes Arsenal have the daunting task of taking on arguably the best team in the world at the moment as they host last season's beaten finalists.

When the draw happened in Zurich, there was collective gasps and some sort of relief that we didn't draw Barcelona, but I think that was more psychological than anything else. The actual realisation will be felt when the Bavarians line up against the Gunners in the first leg of the champions league at the Emirates. 

Arsenal 2012 celebrateLet's be honest shall we Gooners, this Bayern team is close to perfect. Every position has world class players and the back-up players are world class too. Imagine you have a Mueller and Robben competing for the same position, now that's a luxury no team has. Mario Gomez doesn't get an automatic start because Mandzukic has been in some form. Ribery, Neur, Gustavo, Lahm, Schweinsteiger, Kroos, Javi Martinez, Alaba and Dante, if this is not the best set of players around then show me the other option please.
Each position has the kind of players we can only dream of. 

Alright, now for the basic facts. It's a football game across two legs. Arsenal at home in Champions League have an enviable record. We have a first team offence, which, on its day, is among the best in Europe. A midfield of Wilshere, Arteta and Cazorla is as good as the German trio of Bastian, Kroos and Martinez.
In Podolski and Walcott we have the wingers who can give the Bayern full backs an absolute run for their money. As much as he may not be that "little kid" Giroud continues to have the kind of season which defies his critics and could trouble the Bayern defence.

The problem is our defence. With Thomas Vermaelen still injured, Kos stll recovering and trying to get back to the form he had last season, Gibbs forever injured, Arsenal's defence is their Achilles heal quite literally. 

Arsenal do have the players who can hurt Bayern. More than the players I believe the German would-be champions haven't been really tested this season and when they encounter the Gunners I do feel some of the players, especially their defenders and full backs, may be left perplexed.

I'm not comparing, but when Bayern played Dortmund in the German Cup, Dortmund played the short passing game ala Arsenal which hurt the Munich team. The key to that Dortmund team was the tempo with which they played, Gunners please make a note of this one word - tempo.

BayernA football game is not just won on the pitch, it's also decided at times by the attitude. The Germans are renowned for their never-say-die players but Arsenal's first team have the kind of players who don't give up till the end. 
This game will show up on Arsenal big time. This will be a test of resolve, character and determination. This will test Wenger and he won't have any excuses if he is out foxed by the wily Heynckes.

Time to put your hands up and be counted Gunners for this could be one of the greatest moments of your lives or it could be harsh reality and a complete water shed. 

How do we beat them? Play them of at their own game - they play quick, we play quicker, Cazorla can have a good day means there is no defender who can match him, ignite Poldi and let him run at his former team mates, make lesser mistakes and remember it's two legs and we need to go on with something when we visit Bayern. It's not about showing of who has better skills, it's about who has more application.

Involve Walcott more. He is the one player they are concerned about, Giroud needs to shoot on sight, get Vermaelen ready for action and he will have the most important role to play - left back and finally start praying, I believe prayers can make miracles happen, well this won't be a miracle but we have to have the two best games of the season in order to win this, and also hope Bayern don't have two good games.

Football is not just about winning or losing, whoever said that must be shot. It's only about winning. Now come on you Gunners!

Calling all football fans. What do you think the score is going to be against Bayern? Can Arsenal get the job done at the Emirates? How do you see the game going? Whatever your views we'd love to hear from you.

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Antony Melvin

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