Arsenal vs Barcelona: Preview and Starting Eleven

Well, this is it! The match that we all have been waiting anxiously for the past two months is finally upon us. Barcelona, labeled by many as the best football team, gives us a visit at the Emirates tonight.

Now many have already sidelined us and yes we are the underdogs but believe me, we show our best when we are underdogs (remember Real Madrid and AC Milan). No doubt Barcelona is playing the best football but so are we. We have our weaknesses but so do them and if we play to our strengths Barcelona will never know what hit them. And the way we have been playing, I have no doubt that we will give them a lesson in football and we have more than enough quality to do that.

Coming to the starting eleven, Wenger for sure is going to put out the best team available.

Szczesny for sure is going to start and the backline will remain the same as at the weekend with only Eboue coming in for Sagna who is suspended.

In the middle we will see Cesc, Song and Wilshere and upfront Arshavin, Van Persie and Walcott will take their places.

Probable starting XI: Szczesny, Eboue, Djourou, Koscielny, Clichy, Song, Fabregas, Wilshere, Walcott, RVP, Arshavin

Nasri is fit and in the squad for tonight but what Wenger said yesterday, it is more than evident he won’t risk him. Last time we had risked Fabregas and Galas and it backfired very badly as we missed them for rest of that season. And also even without Nasri, we have enough players to give Barcelona a hard time.

I won’t go into the tactics. We know Barcelona is very good in possession and they also press very well as a team. They play football how it should be played but so do we. We know we have to give them no time on the ball, we know we have to give them no space, we know we have to keep possession, we know we have to press as a team, we know we have to defend as a team and we know we have to score goals. And we all know that if we play the way we have played the last few weeks, Chelsea, Birmingham, Wolves, to name a few , we will kill Barcelona, and that is what I expect today. It isn’t an easy task but achievable.

However, I am not that concerned with the result of this tie as I consider Champions League to be a bonus. This is a no pressure game as there is nothing to lose but everything to be gained.  We can beat them yes but if we don’t succeed there will be no regrets. We are in more than a good position to get a domestic treble and for me that is more of an achievement. Whatever the result, I will be behind this team and for me Arsenal is the best team in world.

To conclude, Le Grove has initiated a new song and with the help of many other Arsenal blogs and social websites asked the fans to sing it at the Emirates tonight to show Fabregas what he means to us and send a message to Barcelona that they can p*** off.  The song is:

“Hands off Cesc Fabregas” (to the regular tune of “We’ve got Cesc Fabregas”)

This is how we as fans can make an impact and it is my request to everyone going to the Emirates tonight, to sing this at the loudest.

Have a great day and enjoy the match from where ever you are watching. Tonight Barcelona will be the spectators!!

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