Football is often filled with over-reactionary headlines and plenty of hyperbole. But the NLD this time round is about as crunchy as a crunch match gets.
It really feels as if this is either the time where we are buried out of the title race once and for all or we manage to pull a performance out of nowhere and catapult ourselves back into the fight, but more importantly perhaps, restore some confidence in a group of players who are clearly playing below their usual level.
Further bottles of spice are thrown in given the fact that Tottenham start the game three points ahead of us, an easier run in and a chance to deepen our wounds even further. You just know that Tottenham will be super fired up for this one, and we are going to have to match them at the very least. It might be worth heading down to the Nike shop and ask for nike uk discount codes so we can get some more robust boots as this is sure to be a fiery encounter.
I cannot help but feel the entire game will revolve around how we deal with Tottenham's high energy pressing game. We struggled massively against it last season and that was with Santi Cazorla deep in midfield, a player who is often able to tip toe his way around onrushing opposition players and start a move with a decisive pass to a player who has found space between the lines. Since we lost Santi and pretty much Arteta, that option does not exist so I worry about Coquelin and Ramsey trying to deal with that issue. Unlike last season, we will need to find a way to escape that and not get penned back inside our own half for long stretches of the game.
David Ospina will replace Petr Cech in goal and I shan't be making any comments on that change, the last time I did was just before the Olympiacos game at home, and you know what happened that time. Gabriel will keep his place in the team as Laurent Koscielny continues to deal with a calf problem. He should consider using his SportsDirect.com voucher code to reinforce that calf of his as we need him and need him at his best at that.
Mean Lean's Predicted Line Up:
I have a hunch that Arsène will hand Danny Welbeck his first Premier League start since he returned from injury. Not only are the rest of our forwards not in great scoring form at the moment but Arsène will be banking on some spaces in behind the Tottenham back four, Welbeck is certainly quick enough to punish them on the break or if they intend on leaving too high a line at the back.
Statistically the Tottenham midfield have had the upper hand this season and it should be pretty fiery with Coquelin and Alli flying into tackles.
Thanks to footballfanager.com for the infographic
We are going to have to see our best performance of the season for us to win this game, it is an incredible ask but we have the players to do it. You have to hope their was plenty of collective butt kicking around London Colny this week, certainly that over moping around and feeling sorry for ourselves.
Let's hope whatever we've done in training this week, we have fully recovered and are ready to show the real Arsenal once more.
It will be about time too.