Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Thursday, November 06, 2008

How do you beat Manchester United?

By Eros

What I do know is that you don’t beat them by defending as stupidly as we did against Spurs, by playing as meekly as we did against Stoke and by missing those chances we created against Fenerbacse.

But beat United and everybody starts believing again. The team believe they can compete, the journalists are kept quiet and the fans are reassured that Wenger has not gone potty.

Lose the game and the murmurs will turn into strong discontentment with severe implications for the policy chosen by Arsene Wenger of relying only on youth.

The uncertainty for the future of this team will multiply and the commitment of certain important players for Arsenal will be jeopardised…

Liverpool beat United by playing a relentless pressing game, closing down every corridor and stopping their free flowing passing. But we cannot do that as effectively as we don’t have the players to do it.

Most, if not all, of our available midfielders are more creative by nature rather than defensively or negatively minded. It’s not in their DNA if you like.

Also United will have Ronaldo, Carrick and possibly Hargreaves back making them a different, more passing team, to the one that lost to Liverpool.

So we will greatly increase our chances of winning if we manage to keep the ball away from them. As the old saying goes “they can’t hurt us if they don’t have the ball”.

Go with 5 in the middle

For this reason – and the number of injuries - I think we should go with 5 in the middle.

My five would be Nasri, Cesc, Diaby, Song and Theo. Wenger might choose Denilson and leave either Diaby or Song on the bench although I would want to see some steel there.

I think Ferguson might go the same way, pushing Rooney to the left wing and Ronaldo to the right but free to roam and support Berbatov through the middle.

If that is the case then we will have a couple of areas that we could exploit and get at their defence.

Arsenal’s full backs can provide the winning thrust

As always with Arsenal, the full backs are our most important players. They provide the width and most importantly set the tempo for the rest of the team.

Firstly Sagna and Theo must push Rooney back on to his full back. Make him worry more about defending than attacking. Frustrate him and hope he drifts out of the game.

While Rooney will be willing to run back all day, Ronaldo may not. He tends to stay high up the pitch. Clichy MUST ignore what Ronaldo is doing and play his natural attacking game.

One of Kolo, Silvestre (Djourou if he plays) or Song will aim to get to Ronaldo in time and stop the counter attack.

Clichy and his mate Nasri can win the game for us

Whoever is playing at right back for United is going to be partially exposed because of Ronaldo not tracking back.

If it’s Brown then Clichy will beat him on the outside, if it’s Da Silva, Nasri has the ability to twist him inside out and if it’s Neville, well, I expect to have a number of free kicks in and around that area. Maybe Silvestre can punish his old team from a set piece!

If one of their 3 in midfield has to move over to cover for Ronaldo’s absence on the right side then this will release Cesc in the middle, hopefully allowing him to dictate play and dominate the midfield.

Bendtner, who I expect to play up front, will aim to drag one of the centre backs out of position with his movement giving our midfield the chance to break forward and try and finish off moves.

In order to analyse the game I assumed that Fergie will play a variation of a 4 5 1 formation but he could employ a more attacking 4 4 2.

But whatever formation he employs, the same thing will apply; we need to attack Brown (I consider him the weak link in their defence) and force their wingers backwards.

Whatever happens lets hope that we’ll defend better than we have done recently especially at set pieces and that we are in less charitable mood than Wednesday week….

All I can say is that we are well overdue a performance full of commitment and quality from the boys.

I think we will get it on Saturday.


Anonymous said...

what we do is PRAY PRAY N PRAY!!!

Anonymous said...

The way to beat Utd is;


Bendtner needs to turn up at this game. He's has been awful so far this season!!

Failsworth Devil (Yes, Failsworth Is In Manchester) said...

I love the United v Arsenal games... defo one of the best buzzes of the season...but i prefer the games when they were at Highbury... i think you lot have lost sommat since you moved there... its not just you, but i reckon all clubs who move to new stadiums lose sommat about them...

I cannot believe what i have heard from some Arsenal fans, criticising your gaffer...

At United, we have the best man manager and prob best mind bender in the business, but believe that you lot of have got the best tactician..

Its your board i blame for your blip... lets face it your still bigger than Chelsea..

If your board hadnt sanctioned the stadium you would have funding to compete in the transfer market.. but until these payments are done you are dropping a little bit... not a lot each season..

Now i aint going soft in my old age... im United through to my blood...but even as much as us mancs hate ya, we do actually appreciate the football what you play...just some of the arrogance we dont like... but suppose its the same back...

What i do know is that it will be blood and guts, sweat and bookings galore as usual and i wouldnt change it any other way..

Good luck, but i think United will win this 2-1

Anonymous said...

are u after wengers job

Anonymous said...

We lack the bottle and steel to beat the Mancs and if we do, so what we will still lose to inferior teams we are miles behind the Mancs and Chavs we have run out of ideas and our under-achieving kids can not hack the PL, let's not kid ourselves we will struggle this season and it's down to in-experience coaching which can not handle the art of defending.
We have no sense of direction and you can sense it in the players, I have supported Arsenal since 1973 and even the great Clough got Forest relegated, it's time for changes and Wenger can not do it on his own we have become stale and predictable.
I will be there on Saturday and every home game after that but the prices are becoming too expensive for he working class man to watch we have become customers to Arsenal and it's a shame

Anonymous said...

Walcott is out with an injury and therefore unavailable...

Bhudhi Mukoma said...



Anonymous said...

score more goals than them

Anonymous said...

Holy muppetsville. Clichy should 'ignore' Ronaldo - good plan man.

Zae said...

Clichy must ignore Ronaldo? Fantastic, hopefully Wenger will heed your advice, it would be a fun game for United.

Brown is out, as is Hargreaves and I expect United to go with a 4-4-2 or 4-2-3-1, with Rooney just behind Berbatov.

Anonymous said...

I THINK UTD will go 4-3-3



Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

I Agree, Wenger did exactly what you wrote..

Anonymous said...

Pity failsworth!! Hahaha..

Anonymous said...

Great article bro!!

Yeah!! Pity United!!! Hahahahahaha

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