Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Wenger's key change for Dortmund -More Ozil/Cazorla please!

Morning Gooners.

It's Borussia Dortmund up in the Champions League tonight and it will be another test of our credentials. The German team have been having a pretty mixed start to the season. They lost their first Champion League group game to Napoli at home and have also been beaten in the Bundesliga by Borussia Monchengladbach. However they still sit second in Germany's top league and tonight will be a test, there is no doubt about it.

They have one of the players I love to watch in Marco Reus, who scored a third minute penalty at the weekend to give Jurgen Klopp's team a 1-0 win over Hannover 96. Reus always looks dangerous on the ball and scores goals as well. Already this season he's bagged six goals and three assists from 11 appearances in the Bundesliga and Champions League. Bacary Sagna is in for a busy evening if Reus is on his game.

I have great admiration for the way Klopp's team play. They've got some wonderful players and will certainly give us a game. But the way we're playing right now leaves me in no doubt that should we be on our game, we can take three points tonight.

The big issue we face is getting the balance of the team right without Mathieu Flamini, who will miss the game with the concussion he picked up on Saturday, according to Arsene Wenger. I thought on Saturday we struggled to adapt our game without the Frenchman in the team until Norwich came looking for a second goal and we were able to pick them off on the break.

Clearly Mikel Arteta is the man who will play as the deepest midfielder and I would suspect that Aaron Ramsey will drop in beside him as he did on Saturday. What we have to be cutely aware of his being caught out on the break. We will get punished if that happens too often tonight.

I think the goalkeeper and defence picks itself. Arteta and Ramsey in front of them and then the front three, where we have four players fighting for three places. Mesut Ozil will ceertainly start, then it's two from Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere and Tomas Rosicky.

All three can genuinely stake a claim to start, but I don't think you can leave Wilshere out in the current form he's in. And who doesn't want to see more of Cazorla playing alongside Ozil, despite them only passing to one another 13 times on Saturday. So sadly it seems Rosicky will be the one on the bench.

Arsenal's in-form striker Olivier Giroud will lead the line.

It's going to be a big test tonight. But one I've got no doubt the players will be up for passing. We're top of the Premier League, top of our Champions League group and the momentum is with us. Let's ensure as a crowd we continue the fine atmosphere we've been creating at the ground again tonight. I'm sure it will be buzzing.

Until tomorrow. UTA

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