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Preview: Arsenal v Bayern Munich – Team News, Line-Up & Prediction
Arsenal’s Champions League hopes hang in the balance as we prepare to welcome Bayern Munich to the Emirates this evening.
A shock 2-1 defeat away to Dinamo Zagreb was followed up by a horrendous 3-2 loss at home to Olympiakos three weeks ago to leave us bottom of Group F with no points.
A trip to the Allianz Arena is up next so if we want to stand any realistic chance of making the knockout stages, we need three points tonight.
Many fans have already written us off and feel we’d be better off out of the Champions League so we can concentrate on the league. I appreciate this point-of-view but why work so hard to get in the top four only to dismiss the competition when we’re in it?
We’re a big club and should be making the latter stages of the Champions League, and night’s like this evening are what the players all want to be part of, so let’s give it a real go.
The boys are in decent form havign secured a second consecutive 3-0 win at the weekend but Bayern are in formidable form themselves having won their last 12 games in a row in all competitions. [Gulp!]
Gabriel is back in contention after recovering from illness that ruled him out of the game at Watford so he could be back in defence tonight.
Ospina has been ruled out with a shoulder injury that he picked up while away with the Colombian squad so Cech is certain to start in goal.
Arsene has laughed off the idea that he might be tempted to rest the likes of Ozil and Sanchez so expect those two to start once again.
Wilshere, Rosicky and Welbeck are all still injured but Arteta and Flamini are fit and available for selection.
As for Bayern, they’ll be without Ribery, Gotze and Robben but Costa and Lewandowski have been passed fit after recovering from knocks.
Arsene doesn’t have too many decisions to make tonight as the team is pretty much picking itself these days but there are two positions in particular that are talking points; centre-back and striker.
With Gabriel back I’d prefer to see him alongside Koscielny. Mertesacker’s experience, especially against German opposition, would be useful but I think we need Gabriel’s pace tonight.
Arsene could be tempted to start Giroud after he came off the bench to score last time out but I’d still stick with Theo up top.
Bayern are expected to line up with: Neuer, Lahm, Boateng, Bernat, Alaba, Alonso, Alcantara, Vidal, Muller, Costa, Lewandowski.
This is a difficult one to predict. Arsenal being Arsenal, you wouldn’t be surprised if we won 3-0 but equally you wouldn’t be shocked if we lost 3-0.
We’ve shown in the past we can rise to the occasion against the bigger teams and I’m praying that’ll be the case tonight. Hopefully we can cut out any silly mistakes and take our chances. I’m backing the lads to nick a 2-1 win.
Arsenal 2-1 Bayern Munich