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Preview: Arsenal v Dinamo Zagreb, Team News, Line-Up & Prediction

By on November 24, 2015

arsenal champions league

Arsenal entertain Dinamo Zagreb at the Emirates tonight knowing only victory will keep alive our hopes of progressing to the knockout stages of the Champions League.

We head into the game sitting third in Group F after our drubbing at Bayern Munich and with Olympiakos six points clear in second, we have it all to do if we’re to keep-up our record of qualifying from the group stages.

The shock defeat to Zagreb on matchday one looks like it could end up being very costly and if we fail to beat them again tonight, we don’t deserve to qualify.

Even victory tonight might not be enough as it will all be over if the Greeks get anything in Germany. However, if we can beat Zagreb and hope Bayern do us a favour in the other game tonight, then it will set-up a showdown at Olympiakos in two weeks time where we’ll need to win by two clear goals to nick second.

Team News

Obviously the big injury news is that Coquelin is out for the foreseeable future after damaging knee ligaments against West Brom on Saturday leaving Arsene with a huge void to fill in midfield.

Arteta would probably have filled-in but the Spaniard is also out with a calf injury so we’ll have to wait and see who the boss decides to start alongside Cazorla.

Ramsey resumed first team training yesterday but I doubt he’ll be risked from the start so Campbell could start on the right wing.

Oxlade-Chamberlain is still out with a hamstring problem so he remains on the sidelines along with Walcott, Wilshere, Rosicky and Welbeck.

Preferred Line-Up

I personally think our focus should be on the Premier League so I’d rest Koscielny and Sanchez for this game. We can beat Zagreb without them and it’s vital Alexis doesn’t pick up an injury. Let’s face it, he’s in desperate need of a breather and this is the best chance to give him that rest.

I’d also like to see Chambers given a go in midfield as the thought of Flamini playing makes me shudder. Arsene confirmed the former Southampton youngster is a viable option for the holding role so let’s see how he does against decent opposition.

So this would be my team:

In reality, I think we’ll see Arsene go with his strongest eleven which means Koscielny in defence, Flamini in midfield and Sanchez starting in attack. Let’s hope we don’t pick up any further injuries.

Prediction

We were pretty poor against West Brom at the weekend. We gave away cheap goals and looked toothless in attack, and another display like that tonight could end our Champions League hopes. However, Zagreb are a poor side and even a below-par, injury-hit Arsenal should be able to collect a win. Arsenal 2-0 Zagreb

COYG!!!

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One Comment

  1. Chairman Gallant

    November 24, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    Stop predicting Arsenal matches.With an injury hit squad with visible backup,and with players like Mertasacker,Flamini and even Carzorla who is out of form,anything can happen.And thank God Arteta is out of this one.Anyway, i hope we win tonight to at least restore confidence to our team.

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