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Villarreal preview + Toure, Almunia and Denilson's thoughts

In Arsenal FC, Champions League 2008/09 on April 7, 2009 by Highbury N5 Editor Tagged: , , , ,

Let me be concise. I. Am. Fucking. Excited.

Tonight’s game is in my opinion the most important of the season so far, we must score an away goal. That’s my thinking on it.

Villarreal are a team blessed with great technique and they really like to play football, this game is very winnable by all means but it is also very easy to lose because complacency will be punished at this stage of the Champions League. Much of the fanfare has been about us playing against the great Robert Pires again, a player i have admired for many years. I was so so sad when he left but i think the move came at the right time for him, he was never happy on the bench. Pires aside we have to watch out for Marcos Senna who is one hell of a player, its going to be a tussle between him and Fabregas for the control of the game and thats where i think the support from Song and Denilson will come in helpful, thats why i feel all three will start with Nasri coming in for Arshavin who is ineligible.

Much has been made about the ‘inexperience’ of our side but Almunia thinks we are well capable of progressing:

“It looks to be the season for the young players to be man enough to face all the big competitions we have. Players like Alex Song, Abou Diaby and Theo Walcott – when these players are 100 per cent fit, they can be mentally prepared to be totally professional, and they have the potential to win trophies. We can win every single game and we are here to do it.”

I am relieved that he and the others appreciate how good Villarreal are because if they go in with the wrong mentality we will be booted out. Simple as that. Al will have to be on his toes tonight.

Getting the attitude right has also been the topic of Toure’s comments, Toure being the only goalscorer in 2006 when we met them in the Semi’s:

“When we played them in 2006 they made us work hard. I was happy to score a goal in that first match but the second game was really difficult and in the end we were lucky that Jens saved the penalty. This time it is going to be really tight again. We have to concentrate and not think it is going to be easy. The atmosphere there is unbelievable, you can feel the pressure from the fans because they are so close. However, we are used to that in the Premier League, which is going to help us a lot.”

Focus is the order of the day. Personally, I think we will get that away goal and that would give us a massive boost going into the home leg. A cagey start will probably occur as both the sides eye each other up but with the defensive cushion of Song and Denilson we effectively have a back six if needed so the onus will be on not conceding, its probably as important as getting an away goal.

There is a lot of competition in midfield and this is welcomed by Denilson.

Our season is coming together now and it really is crunch time. Arsenal need to stand up and be counted out there in a stadium that an English team has never won before. We did it at Real Madrid and AC Milan, lets do it at Villarreal tonight.

Let me know your predictions, enjoy the game and i will be back fresh and early tomorrow.

’til then.

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6 Responses to “Villarreal preview + Toure, Almunia and Denilson's thoughts”

  1. It’s going to be an entertaining match but tension soaked one.Our young squad will b at their best.We would put in a goal at the first half while they would equalise at the second half

  2. My head says 2-1 to The Arsenal. My heart says something special happens and we come away with a 3 or 4 goal win.

    45 minutes til first kick!

  3. 1-1 – Adebayor… what a goal!!! Song did very well and Fabregas looked a little tired at times.

    Worries over Gallas and Almunia tho 😦

    Puts us in rather a good position me thinks.

  4. Great game, good result, unbelievable goal!

  5. I will take that result after a horrific first half!

    What a goal though, truly outstanding…before that goal Ade wasn’t really in the game but after that he caused no end of problems.

    Bad news on the Gallas front though. May have played his last game for Arsenal.

  6. Collection of maturess

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