A case for the Underdog….

 Well, well, well…

At the Emirates we were made to look like a lower league team in the first twenty minutes or so. Big Al made saves that no one expected he could. Our defense was made to defend for their lives at one point even Tony Adams would have been proud of some interceptions and blocks made. So what went wrong?

As said the best form of defense is attack and our attack never seemed to click. AA was not fit while Nasri had his hands full with Alves. Our midfield was not closing them down enough which resulted from Fab4 and Diaby not being fully fit.  Diaby has become a real powerhouse in midfield and his poor game was one of the main reasons we struggled to get a foothold in the game. At the back Gallas was not fully fit either. I felt that, despite Sol lacking pace,  his defensive organization skills was sorely missed.

The 4-3-3 is a good formation when it clicks but when it contains passengers it is a catastrophe in the making. So what will Arsene do about it?

In his post match review AW said we have to get a plan to win the ball off them. Firstly AW should start with fully fit players. We should also chase them down all over the park like we did to opposition at the beginning of the season. Diaby and Nasri were rested at the weekend because they will be the ones to close down the spaces in midfield.

Denilson has been poor this season but credit to him he has worked hard to at least merit a place in the team. In our team no one comes close to intercepting passes than Denilson maybe Clichy is closest. He stabilized our midfield when he came on and always made the simple pass which made our game to start flowing. However, his failure to track back has cost us some games this season and it would be suicidal if he fails to do at the Camp nou. With Song now out, Denilson is sure to start.

Let’s talk tactics

I explained Barca’s tactics last week but expect some changes. Ibra is injured so expect to see Bojan/Henry playing in the CF role. Henry is out of favor right now but whoever plays expect them to play a much more fluid and fast paced game. Abidal has returned from injury so expect him to start at left back. In defense the most likely combination will be Milito/Marquez. Iniesta may feature. In terms of our line up I expect to see Bendy up front with Rosicky and Eboue flanking him. In midfield Nasri and Diaby are sure starters, Sagna, Clichy and Almunia will complete the line up. Expect Theo to feature.

Barca will want to assert their authority early hence I see them starting at a ferocious tempo. We may need to do some more heroics in defense early on. However AW may decide to shock them by taking the game to them early on to rattle their cages as they did to us in the first leg. Eboue’s direct running will be required since Abidal will be likely to tire since he has only come back from injury. We will also need to run at their central defense since they are slow and can’t cope with athletes. Rosicky for me also has a key role to play. He is our most experienced midfielder left and he will need to step up big time in Barcelona.

Rosicky links up play so well. He also tracks back and battles hard when he is on the pitch. He will have to help Nasri and Diaby in winning the midfield battle. Barca is likely to continue with their high pressing game and is likely to prevent our passes hence Nasri and diaby’s close control will be much-needed. They will most likely share the free role in between them. Diaby will have to get in the box as often as he can when we are in crossing situations and in counter attacks. Nasri’s craft and guile will also be needed. Nasri who rarely performs away from home will really have to step it up big time. Whoever plays in defensive midfield role will have to cut out passes and minimize the spaces for their forwards to run into. We have to stay compact since we saw what awarding them space can lead to. Clichy and Sagna will have to do better in preventing acres of space to Alves and Maxwell as we saw in the first leg with assistance from the wing forwards. Almunia and the central defenders will have to concentrate for the full 90+ minutes.


Most teams that visit the Camp nou normally go there and hide resulting in a huge spanking. If we hide we will be destroyed. Some of their players are also displaying a sense of arrogance in the media. The media has placed us as an underdog which suits us just fine. The Camp nou is one of the finest arenas in Europe and in the situation we are in we have nothing to lose, GO FOR IT! I’d rather we lost trying than losing while not giving it a real go.

Barca tire towards the end of games as witnessed in the first leg; no team can match our stamina over ninety minutes. Eboue will need to tire their defense before Theo comes on to finish the job. Theo will scare them stiff and it is a psychological advantage for us. As much as we enjoy playing in big pitches they love it too. Messi may have had a quiet game at the Emirates but we should be wary of him since he may decide the tie. We should shoot on sight and NOT PLAY WITH FEAR! Get as many crosses in to Bendtner he may score from one of them, he will need to hold up the ball and occupy their defense to allow us to play.

To all the Gooners who travel over there, sing your hearts out as you have done all season. The boys have done us well so far and no matter what happens we win and lose as a team.


Written by KTR-7




99 Responses to A case for the Underdog….

  1. rico says:

    Morning all

    Another great peice KTR7, thank you….

  2. ‘ola

    i thought ktr7 said he couldn’t write

    nice one

  3. rico says:

    morning rsd, nah, he never said that 🙂

  4. rico says:

    Barca say they are not worried about Theo, mme, me thinks the opposite 😉

  5. rico says:

    Its very quiet for a match day 😦

  6. apparently everyone’s focusing

    right of to camp nou

    see you in the morning

    be lucky

  7. rico says:

    Enjoy the trip and the match rsd, hope its a great night and great result…

  8. K-TR7 says:

    Morning.barca are really scared of theo.

  9. Erick says:

    Morning all What do we say in situations like this but to just keep the faith Nice one K-TR7 the boys will need to do Extra work

  10. rico says:

    Morning KTR7, nice post, shame there are not more around to read it… I think they are worried about Theo, just like we worry about Messi…

  11. rico says:

    Morning Erick, nervous yet??

  12. Erick says:

    K-TR7 I hope Theo start we need to keep them on the back foot for 90 plus minus

  13. Erick says:

    Yap Rico very hope we will fight for our lives

  14. Hugo says:

    I have a little feeling that tonight will be The Night of Eboue! I’ve also got a fiver on us to win 2-0, £370 coming my wayif we do!

  15. K-TR7 says:

    Erick-The problem with theo starting is guardiola may plan for him leading to him being anonymous.it is also risky to bench him since barca may be out of sight by then.lets pray TR7 and sol make it.we will have to be compact in defense since sol will struggle in one on ones against henry/messi/pedro/bojan.

  16. rico says:

    Totally off the subject, General Election has been called for May 6th…

  17. Erick says:

    True K-TR7 lets hope for the best am off for a while school duty will join you guys later 🙂 am believing until 90 minutes plus Get in RSD we need them pictures

  18. Suhail,TV says:

    Morning all.. Any worries abt TR7.. Great post K TR7. We can not afford yet another injury.. Oh

  19. rico says:

    Me too Erick, I’ll be glad when 7.45 uk time gets here, but then i will be very nervous…

    Good point about Theo KTR7, but the lad will be up for this, I would be tempted to start with him… but that view could very well change…

    Maybe star with Traore on the left, use his pace and after he tires stick Theo on to continue the momemtum

  20. Suhail.TV says:

    Intimidating nou camp.

  21. rico says:

    Morning Hugo and STV – Brave betting Hugo 🙂

  22. Suhail.TV says:

    Morning Rico, Nervous.. Abt play, surely we need an unbreakable sol

  23. Sid says:

    Morning all..

    sol me make it?

    we are definitely going to go there with a point to prove.. hopefully wenger puts some huffin and puffin into his team talk and we blow their house down..

  24. rico says:

    Morning Sid

    I can’t see Sol not playing, said yesterday, he won’t get another chance to play in a match like tonight, he will give his all and do us all proud… I hope 🙂

  25. Edmond Dantes says:

    Morning gooners

    Good post. I also think Walcott should be used as an impact substitute again. His game does not have the same effect over 90 minutes usually.

    Barca’s tempo was incredible last week. Don’t know how Sol is going to cope with that. He may give away too many free kicks if he gets done for pace and it will lead to more pressure on the defence.

    In Arsene we trust

  26. Edmond Dantes says:

    I understand that we will have to play Sol though. He’s definitely a better option than Silvestre.

  27. Edmond Dantes says:

    Arsenal has been linked with a host of attacking players for next season. Imo, a CB and GK should be the priority. Neuer seems a good option in goal.

  28. Suhail.TV says:

    What abt this un usual line up manuel eboe sagna TV clichy nasri deni DB traore walcott bentner

  29. Edmond Dantes says:

    This is what I will go for:


    Sagna Campbell Vermaelen Clichy

    Denilson Diaby

    Eboue Nasri Rosicky


    We can bring on Theo and maybe (if we have no choice) Eduardo. Im not sure who else can make a difference from the bench. Resources are stretched somewhat.

  30. Edmond Dantes says:

    The best line-up imo is:

    Sag Gal Verm Cli
    Song Diaby
    Nas Fab Arsh

    So we missing our 5 best players. Best cb, best dm, best cm/am, best st.

  31. Suhail.TV says:

    I dont like diaby in Cm some times..

  32. rico says:

    Hi Edmond

    Nor do I STV, he is too attack minded..

  33. Suhail.TV says:

    Bit like maklele playing as attacking mid fielder. Hope fully denilsen can step up against barca. He got good technic but look lazy some times. Time to bomb his stunners

  34. Hugo says:

    I rate Diaby in dm, and if he plays well tonight he could be the deciding factor because they won’t be expecting much of a threat from him. On his day he can destroy opponents and if we see signs of that tonight they’ll be afraid of him big time.

    And Rico, a couple of weeks ago I stuck another fiver on us and Bayern to both qualify so tommorrow night the finances could be looking very healthy! Or I could just be 10 quid down…

  35. K-TR7 says:

    I still remember diaby’s perfomance in carling cup final vs the chavs where they couldn’t handle him.his rest will do him the world of good.pep will concentrate on theo but i think diaby,nasri,denilson and rosicky will be our game deciders.

  36. rico says:

    😆 Hugo

    I just think Diaby is too ‘up and down’ – saying that he was dreadful last game against Barca, i hope tonight he has a great game.

    We need someone to take control of the defence and midfiled, if Sol plays he will sort the defence, but I don’t know who in midfield will give us what Song so often does…

    I guess in a few hours we will see…

  37. W.A.T.H says:

    Greetings all………..

    Is there a game lata 2nite…????????

  38. rico says:

    Afternoon wath, its the reserves v barca, we should walk it 😉

  39. W.A.T.H says:

    Oh ok Rico wondered what all the fuss was about… In that case I’ll go out 4 dinner 2nite, thought it was something important..!

  40. rico says:

    Cant believe the i/v with theo on sky, all about how fast he can do the 100 metres…… why not ask him why he cant cross??? grrr

    AW was funny though, he said ‘ I can do it in 70 seconds’ 😆

  41. W.A.T.H says:

    Rico, who’s this barca ur on about ? anywhere near brentford..?

  42. rico says:

    Nowt important, i think its just because the kids are in spain, they don’t often get to go abroad…

    Corrie for me and Eastenders…

  43. W.A.T.H says:

    I’m thinking a chinese then a few hours down the pub playing dominoes………!

  44. rico says:

    Barca – i don’t know who they are really wath, haven’t heard much about them, they are not much of a football club, they play a very messy game …

    Brentford? Where’s that…

  45. rico says:

    I thought you would be more of a crib man…

  46. W.A.T.H says:

    Barca……….. dont they play basketball……?

    ooooooooh crib………….. Now u talking rico with a pint of stout obviously 😉

  47. Suhail.TV says:

    Wath don’t get ‘fitt’ from bar, there’s a game to hang out with.

  48. rico says:

    Ah, basketball, i saw that on the barca site, they have a whole lot of info about the game, and there was me thinking…..

    nothing like the black stuff, none of that blackcurrant mallarky though…

  49. rico says:

    I love chinese food……

  50. W.A.T.H says:

    Don’t know about fitt S.TV 🙂 Maybe 15 years ago lol………….

  51. rico says:

    STV – what game ??? 😉

  52. W.A.T.H says:

    Chinese my fav Rico…….. Apart from a nice bit of fillet on the barbie 🙂

  53. rico says:

    Rosicky now 50/50 and Sol a major doubt for tonights Chinese meal…

  54. Suhail.TV says:

    Now gamble is allowed, wath I’ll spend whole day in a bar if we lost..

  55. W.A.T.H says:

    Sol……….. now thats not a bad fish either…!

  56. rico says:

    I don’t like that particular fish 😦

  57. K-TR7 says:

    The players that take to the pitch should be applauded since its like there was a world war in the UK…

  58. rico says:

    Agree there KTR7, they need to be at their loudest out there – I bet they will be too…

  59. rico says:

    rsd has gone to the game, be interesting what he says tomorrow..

  60. W.A.T.H says:

    Didnt kno RSD liked basketball Rico………. 😉

  61. Erick says:

    Rsd say its Rainy and no Gunners in site pub are also closed but he carried his stash 😉 😉 thats on FB

  62. agirlagunner says:

    Great article, KTR7. Hello, everyone. No better platform for Theo to show that he’s more than a speed demon! Rico, if Bac can learn to deliver a cross like the one that the Big Dane nodded home v. Wolves…One has to have hope about Theo.:)

    I can’t believe TR7 is a doubt. I like that he gives us shape.

    Abou has to run down the center like it’s no one’s business. When the mood strikes him, he is quite something to watch.

  63. Suhail.TV says:

    Good evening aGAG,..

  64. agirlagunner says:

    Good evening, Suhail. I’ve been on tenterhooks over the game since I woke up. Can’t wait!

  65. W.A.T.H says:

    There lies the problem AGAG… when the mood suits Diaby !! If he is in lazy bollox mode lata we stuffed…! Lets Hoope TR7 can al very least make the bench be a great impact sub for 25 mins if he cant start…!

  66. Suhail.TV says:

    Agag you wont sleep today and gonna watch the match is’t it.. Rosicky is 50 50.. Sol doubtful Why our players’re so fragile?

  67. agirlagunner says:

    I know what you mean. I remember an old Theo interview where he said that in the team Abou and Dudu have the best tricks. And it wasn’t until an eternity later that understood what he meant abo ut the former.

    I care less about tricks than quality tonight.

    Shame about TR7 when he looked so bright over the weekend.

  68. agirlagunner says:

    Suhail, I was up at dawn because I was silly enough to set a 6:30 am appointment. Ha. I’ll probably sleep two hours. Which part of the world are you watching this from?

  69. Suhail.TV says:

    New delhi now actually from south India

  70. W.A.T.H says:

    Don’t right TR7 off AGAG, Diaby is a luxury player, 2nite we just need him to graft…!

  71. W.A.T.H says:

    How did the meeting go AGAG…. U should be more careful with your appointments 🙂

  72. agirlagunner says:

    So you’ll watch 1:30-ish am? I think Manila’s two hours ahead of New Delhi. What wouldn’t we do to watch this club, yeah?

  73. Suhail.TV says:

    Appointments shall not coincide with arsenal fixtures. If they do it’d be postponed. The fa

  74. Suhail.TV says:

    No actually at 12. 15 am i might skip tomorrow’s class.

  75. Suhail.TV says:

    Ya. I might skip tomorrow’s class.

  76. agirlagunner says:

    WATH, it went as well as could be expected for anything scheduled 6:30 am. Note to self: never again.

    Tonight we need everyone to graft! I hope Abou tries to use his heft to further our advantage. Without Pique and Puyol, Barca may be just that little bit less compact.

    I hope Clichy has another good one. He’s much better now compared to the start of the season. I like him. He is endlessly positive.

  77. Suhail.TV says:

    Even with out those 2 they have a back 4 of abidal milito marques and alves.But they all are either back from injury or on the verge of injury. I missed RVP very much….

  78. agirlagunner says:

    Now, I really have to check the sked.

    Suhail, when I watched the 06 CL League finals v. Barcelona, I was so devastated by the results, I couldn’t manage to drag myself to work. My best friend was smart enough to file for a vacation leave the day post-match; I was envious, so I SMS-ed my boss that I had chest pains and wouldn’t be able to go to the office. It was true too, you know.

    Try to go to your afternoon classes though!

  79. W.A.T.H says:

    Yes AGAG… not good making 6.30am appointments… ! Hope you cancelled 2moro’s early ones…! Your right diaby needs to put himself about so to Bendy and Ebooie and Clichy need to get in early and be positive…! We shall see…!

  80. agirlagunner says:

    Oh, we all miss RvP. Imagine just how much better we would be if we have him on board! I was hoping he’d be fit for the game against citeh, but it’s not looking like it.

  81. Suhail.TV says:

    Really, arsenal gives us so many heart breaking moments past 5 yrs. How frustrating was it watching 3 draws in succession and slipping your lead step by step. It took whole 3 weak. But the boys are tough this season they deserve some thing.. They deserve some ting. All factors were against us.. injuries the refs but its such a story of sacrifice and fight. Hope no chest pain for you thursday rather than relief. We can.

  82. rico says:

    Sorry i went AWOL had a few things go on at the same time 😦

    Afternoon agag, hope your right about theo and his crosses 🙂

  83. Suhail.TV says:

    I mean wednesday

  84. W.A.T.H says:

    I’m outta here be good all and enjoy the game….!

  85. agirlagunner says:

    Night, gents! Bendy for a header! Eboue for a one on one v. Valdes! Samir from distance! One thing about Arsenal is that scoring possibilities are endless. Clichy might even win his bet with Sagna and Djourou.

    Everything to play for in just a few hours, but at the same time, nothing to lose!!

  86. rico says:

    Nite agag, hope you get some sleep before kick off…

  87. agirlagunner says:

    Hey, Rico. I’m off to nap. I need to prepare myself for this. Last week I was screaming my head off at 5 am. I woke up two people in the hosehold and only I was amused.

  88. Suhail.TV says:

    I am off.. Hoping for a good result and seeing every one happy tomorrow.

  89. rico says:

    😆 agag, you go rest, i fear you will be screaming later to!

    STV, catch you tomorrow, enjoy the game best you can 😉

  90. K-TR7 says:

    We beat madrid galacticos with a backline of eboue,flamini,senderos and kolo.we beat milan away in white kits.today we play with white kits…

  91. rico says:

    KTR-7, you will soon have me starting to believe again 🙂

    Any news on Sol and Tomas ??

  92. rico says:

    I’m off for a bit – here’s to a night of Gooner Glory, I have everything crossed, catch you later..

  93. rico says:

    Shit, no Sol!!

    Rosicky and Theo start…

  94. rico says:

    Silvestre, bloody Silvestre – any hope i had has just gone down the toilet 😦 😦

  95. K-TR7 says:

    Rico-keep the faith.to be fair barca fans hate seeing marquez on the pitch.

  96. harryo says:

    this is a praying job. sylfucking fester. how have we ended up this bad

  97. rico says:

    shit ref again, great tackle by denny…

    im trying ktr7, hi harryo

  98. rico says:


  99. rico says:

    thats it, i am off for the night, we need a miracle, and it isnt going to happen sadly…… im gutted…


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