Thoughts On The Starting Eleven And Tactical Aspects Of The Shakhtar Game

Eduardo makes an emotional return to Arsenal with a Shakhtar side I know very little about. The Crozilian might not get a start and that tells me the Ukrainian side have a strong squad. They’ve won both their Champions League games so far and have won 15 out of 17 in their domestic league. Put simply, they’re a strong European side and anything less than a fully focused performance can see us drop crucial points.

There were no surprises in what the visiting manager Mircea Lucescu said,

I hope it will be a very good match. They will control the game for sure, it’s normal because they’re at home and they have many creative players. We have to be organised and cause them difficulties on the counterattack. It’s difficult to say we’re here to play an attacking game because it depends on Arsenal, what with them being at home, but we can create big problems for them.

Tactically, this game would probably be similar to playing teams like Villa or Everton at home. The onus will be on Arsenal to break them down while keeping the counter-attacking threat in check. I’m not sure the Ukrainian side will have a defence as strong as the English sides but they might be much more lethal on the break with their quick and tricky Brazilians.

We could see how good Shakhtar were on the counter attack when they scored three away to Braga. Granted they had a bit of luck as the Braga keeper made a big blunder but there is no doubt about the quality of Douglas Costa or Luis Adriano. Shakhtar fans will be hoping Costa is able to recover from his injury in time to start this game. Without him they might lack the cutting edge.

Considering the fact that Braga were able to create plenty of clear chances against Shakhtar, I think we can score a few goals in this game if we are clinical enough. I expect Arshavin to be a big player in this game as he has thrives in the more open and less physical European games.

It will be interesting to see the line-up Arsene picks. I can’t see many changes to the back five but Gibbs could come in for Clichy. I’d certainly prefer to see the youngster get this game as we need a fresh Clichy for the visit to City at the end of the week.

Wenger has some big decisions to make as far as the midfield is concerned. Will Cesc get a start? If there is any doubt about his match fitness then half an hour at the end would be the best option. I remember we rushed him back against Villa only to lose him for a few more weeks. We can win this game without El Capitan so it’d seem like an unnecessary risk.

Wilshere is suspended for the three games in England so it would be much better to play him in this game. That means Arsene will have to pick four out of Arshavin, Diaby, Denilson, Song, Rosicky, and Nasri. I’m not considering Walcott for a start for reasons similar to the ones I mentioned for Cesc.

I’d like to see Arshavin, Song, Denilson, and Rosicky start this game. This will allow us to rest Diaby and Nasri before the visit to City. It will also allow Wilshere to play in a more advanced role in which he excelled against Partizan. Chamakh will retain his place as the focal point of the attack.

This would give us a strong bench with great variety as Cesc, Walcott, Bendtner, Nasri, Clichy and Diaby can all make an impact if necessary. If not, then we could just give Fabregas, Theo, and Nicklas a few minutes of game time.

The starting eleven I’m suggesting is,

Fabianski – Eboue, Squillaci, Djourou, Gibbs – Song, Wilshere, Denilson – Arshavin, Chamakh, Rosicky.

No matter who Wenger picks, we’ll have to be vary of their pace and movement. Djourou and Squillaci will have to read the game really well because the Shakhtar attackers are likely to be technically superior to the players from Birmingham and they’ll make some intelligent runs. Our defenders won’t have to worry that much about an aerial attack in this game but Srna will provide some quality on the set-pieces.

I think this game will be another good test for Djourou and Fabianski. If we don’t see an individual error from the back five we could keep a clean sheet but I don’t want to jinx it by hoping for it. I’ll go for a 3-1 win.

12 Responses to Thoughts On The Starting Eleven And Tactical Aspects Of The Shakhtar Game

  1. Phil23 says:

    If Fabregas starts against City I’m not sure if Nasri should start against City as he would be pushed out onto the wing. Even if hes on the wing he would eventually be subbed for Walcott. For this reason I would probably add Nasri into the team.
    Eboue Squillaci Djourou Gibbs
    Denilson Diaby
    Rosicky Nasri Wilshere

    I know thats relying on Diaby a bit too much but he should be able to be subbed off after about 60 minutes. We need his pace in midfield a long with Denilson’s intercepting and high work rate. Song could get caught out when he pushes up too far and I saw Diaby play this role well at the start of the season. I thought Bendtner could get the start because Chamakh needs the rest and Bendtner needs time on the pitch to return to sharpness. Lets hope Eduardo does start so he can get the recognition he deserves.

    • Wenger said Bendtner is not ready. So he will not start for next few games , may start in the carling cup. I think the line-up will be very similar to Desi’s lineup. Only change i think will be Rosicky for Arshavin with Nasri on left.

  2. Filip says:

    I agree with your analysis.As an Arsenal fan , I must admit that the best match tomorrow is Real Madrid vs AC Milan.I prefer to watch them.Douglas Costa wont play against us anyway so there isnt much to see in this match.We will win.Simple.
    By the way , did you hear about xavi`s Achilles problems ? Apparently he has played so much football in the last 5 years(54 games per season) that he is knackered and he will be able to play only once a week(something like Ledley King)? Barca need Fabregas now.I think it would have been a huge bargain if we sold Cesc for 40 mln euros and bought Ozil for 16 mln in the summer.It is true that we could miss his leadership but Ozil has the same vision/creativity like Cesc.He is 3 inches taller and much quicker.His shooting is not worse and his crossing from set-pieces is brilliant and as good as ryan giggs`s( i bravely add). We would have made a lot of money(24 mln euros) out of this swap deal. The quality wouldnt be worse and we would sell a lot of shirts as well.The population of Germany : 85 millions.The population of Turkey:80 mln.Mesut is famous all around the world as well.He has been brilliant so far for Real.Of course, it didnt happen so the bargains of this season are Kagawa(dortmund),Van der Vaart and Hernanes(lazio).What do you think,Desi ? A missed chance for Wenger who is well-known for making big bargains.

    • Wilshere,Ramsey, Rosicky, Nasri ………
      Are you very sure the players you have mentioned are better than the above (excluding Ozil may be) ?
      We wanted to keep Cesc we kept him , since Cesc was there we did not need Ozil. Denying that move has been the success of Arsene for which he has worked so hard in the past few years, that is the power we have gained. We did not miss any chance what so ever.
      Still i believe we have the upper hand.
      If you want shirt sales, may be Arsenal needs to sign an Indian player indian population is 1200 million or a chinese 1500 million 😀 .

    • clarence says:

      personally, i dun agree with it. We are a team that want to win everything available, and selling our best player to our main european rival dun really help it, especially we no longer need the money.

      Of coz if we wan to kill of parca financially, we can just quote a figure they can barely afford it, like euro 80mill, than they wont be able to spent to improve on their other weakness like thin squad and they might just go thru wat liverpool has gone thru..

      And i rather make sure fab stay so that we dun need to spent another 2-3 years waiting for a new playmaker to get use to EPL. i dun mind waiting for trophy, but i do mind the clock keep getting reset.

  3. Nischit says:

    I really think Arshavin needs a rest. If I were wenger, I’d go with Wilshere, Song and Denilson..Rosicky, Walcott n Chamakh

  4. Nischit says:

    Not as confident as you desi. Just hoping for a win!

  5. Mick says:

    Dudu for a hat trick but will win 4-3 as Eboue will try to kill the keeper…

  6. LondonGunner says:

    Chamakh surely needs a rest he has been playing in every game, we need our best players fresh and ready for the City. Beating the city away will send a message to all the teams in the EPL that we in it to win it.

  7. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Usama Zafar, EpiKnightz. EpiKnightz said: DesiGunner: Thoughts On The Starting Eleven And Tactical Aspects Of The Shakhtar Game: Eduardo makes an em… #Arsenal […]

  8. […] Thoughts On The Starting Eleven And Tactical Aspects Of The Shakhtar Game Eduardo makes an emotional return to Arsenal with a Shakhtar side I know very little about. The Crozilian might not get […] […]

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