Arsenal vs Anderlecht: 5 Things To Do To Secure Victory. 3; Tame ‘New Kompany’!

Of Anderlecht’s impressive young guns, Andy Najar was the most threatening to the Arsenal defence a fortnight ago. With Monreal still adjusting to the center back role on the day, the 21-year old youngster from Choluteca was a tad too fast for even Kieran Gibbs, and his ability to ghost in behind our center backs who were drawn out of position gave him space to power home the header from a pin point cross for their lead. As much as we miss Koscielny, Monreal seems to have somewhat adjusted into the partnership with Mertesacker, making better use of his technical ability gained from the wings to command control and assume composure under pressure. He must get close enough to the tricky Number 7, not giving him any space to accelerate or cause any nuisance. He has a goal average of one in five games, not necessarily a scary return but has enough in his locker to require Monreal’s undivided attention.

As he marks his return to Champions League duties, He simply cannot afford to lose his head again today, as it would really put the team in real trouble with our goalkeepers. He’s not had so much to do in terms of saves over the past few games and must be on his toes to put off those young energetic boys from Belgium. We could be five goals up and coasting home and dry but seeing how many goals Dortmund have scored (they are yet to concede), first place could all come down to goal difference.

The ‘new Vincent Kompany’ was one incredible hulk that proved indomitable for Danny Welbeck last time out but having been so good all evening, it was still his non-clearance of Alexis’ cut-back-cum-shot that set Podolski up for the winner. That must be some encouragement to Danny to commit the 20 year old more, especially putting him under pressure in their own box. Alexis’ has set the standard for pressing opponents into making errors and there is nothing to suggest the Besnik Hasi’s boys wouldn’t be under some tension when they walk through the hallway into the main bowl of the Emirates.

Only once have we managed to go into the half time break with a lead this season and as that came in our last home game in the Champions League, it would really be a relief to see a déjà vu. For the most part, we have been inventive but the cutting edge has been lacking and with the momentum now on our side, and without underestimating the opponent, we must get it early tomorrow to avoid the prospect of a repeat of the scenario at Belgium.

If Dortmund win Galatasaray, a win over Anderlecht will see us through to the next round. That shouldn’t be a distraction and they shouldn’t even think about it. Just play and enjoy the win.

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