I haven't even had enough time to wallow about after the defeat to West Brom, and now the Dinamo Zagreb fixture has flown around the corner, all getting in our faces and stuff. Usually I cannot wait for another fixture to replace a previous defeat but I guess I am feeling a little punch drunk after the weekend result. I would rather the players had the midweek off to rest limbs and get returning players ready for our trip to Norwich. But that's not happening so I should just shut up and be thankful for another dose of Champions League participation.
So it's knife edge stuff this evening isn't it? If we are to hold onto any hopes of the knock out rounds then nothing less than an Arsenal victory tonight will do. Even if we win we could still be dumped out of the competition should Olympiacos get anything at all from Bayern Munich in Germany. Not impossible but gee whiz I'd be surprised. If results go as we hope/think then it will leave Arsenal and Olympiacos going for a final group game shoot out. But that is too far away for me to think about right now in too much detail.
My concern is getting through another 90 minutes without anymore blinking injuries. Is that too much to ask for? I mean really? Not only that but we know all too well about taking opposition teams lightly and not getting the result we expected.
So Aaron Ramsey is back in the squad, with only a handful of training sessions under his belt will he be ready to start the game? I guess Arsène will turn to his medical staff on that one. Without the energy and tenacity of Coquelin, we will need Ramsey's engine in there somewhere, I am guessing he will go back to the right. We have missed Ramsey's presence on the right because he always gave us an extra body in the middle of the pitch. Another chance creator, another runner beyond the striker and another tackler. Even though Joel Campbell is hard working, he does not do the job of a midfielder and it is why Arsene uses one wide forward (Alexis) and one midfield player to add the needed balance.
Ideally I think Arsène would prefer to start him from the bench but I think our limited choices may well just force his hand a little tonight.
Mean Lean's Predicted Line Up:
I wonder if Arsène is considering playing all the attacking full backs again in another Champions League must win home match. Let's forget about the fact that we didn't get the result or performance in those games, it will be an option for the boss.
We have been able to bounce back from set backs pretty well this season, in fact since we turned our form around last January or so, so a positive result and hopefully a good performance is just what this team need to cast aside the previous few results. A good victory would also take the mind off the Coquelin injury if only for a short while.
I'll take it.