While I accept that there’s not much riding on Manchester United versus Arsenal this season, it’s still not a place to go cap in hand begging for mercy. The home fans will be baying for blood and although I’m not seeing another 8-2 defeat, it could still be painful viewing for Gunners’ fans, especially if Wenger throws in Arsenal’s promising Greek central defender, Mavropanos, in the deep end.
I’ve read ridiculous comments today like the youngster will assign Sanchez to his pocket, while out-bullying Lukaku. That’s an awful lot to expect from a potential debutant. It’s completely unrealistic and I hope Wenger protects the defender from the possibly humiliation that lies ahead.
If Koscielny (who has been receiving a lot of unfair criticism of late) and Mustafi do not play, which seems likely, at least Holding and Chambers have enough experience already to be able to deal with the fallout from a mauling from Man U. The pair have huge potential and have had the fair share of highs and lows in their careers so far. It wouldn’t be right to be expose a debutant, no matter how good he is, to the same level of pressure, especially away from home.
Meanwhile, Aubameyang could put Man U on the backfoot with his pace and prowess, providing he receives a semi-decent service, which is far from a given. Nevertheless, Man U will only succeed in embarrassing Arsenal if they successfully keep Auba at bay.
It’s a shame that Auba is unavailable to face Atletico Madrid, as it’s hard to see Arsenal progressing in the Europa League, after conceding at the Emirates, without him.
Nonetheless, Arsenal always have a world-beating performance up their sleeves, so most of the fans would take another embarrassment at Old Trafford if it’s followed by victory in Madrid.