As the sun shines kindly on the second Premier League game week, let us say grace that our weekend football has come about and reared its pretty little head without the threat of a third World War or an impending doom of an asteroid hurtling towards earth. Indeed, there’s a lot to look forward to this weekend’s key fixtures in the English Premier League, existential strife notwithstanding.
But all that doesn’t quite matter if you’re an Arsenal fan – the entropy is already too real after their last week’s performance vs Liverpool at the Emirates. We look at three key players that could potentially snowball the disillusionment of the erstwhile, most celebrated club in London, and what Arsene could do about it.
#1 Riyad Mahrez
What was evident to see, that despite the very real interest from Arsenal, real enough for Canal +, the French TV channel of some repute, reported it to be all but done.
Well, it hasn’t been done quite yet, and Arsenal may have to face the consequences of tardiness. The obvious perpetrator has already scored in game week one in their humbling defeat against Mike Phelan’s Hull City. Albeit a consolation goal, the former prospect of the obscure AAS Sarcelles, in his usual fashion, carved out chances up on chances against the newly promoted Tigers. Some players usually take the first few games to get their motors running in the Premier League, but if his performance vs the Tigers is anything to go by, Riyad’s all revved up and ready to put in show against the gunners – an audition you may even call it, for his prospective future employers.
It’s essential that Mahrez is made to come deep to collect the ball, to negate his presence around the box.
#2 Ahmed Musa
The Arsenal defence would be still applying ointment to their mental scars, if a) there were such an ointment for mental scars, b) as a precautionary measure had they been facing Sadio Mane again this week. The new Liverpool man highlighted the glaring weakness the Arsenal back line had against the turf-tearing pace in Arsenal’s 3-4 defeat to the Merseyside giants.
In the second-half of the game, Mane fully exploited the space in behind and space in the wide areas, as Arsenal held a high narrow-line almost with the intention to incur the wrath of the Senegalese swishboots.
Arsenal need to be wary again, this week, when they face a similar predicament when the sprightly Ahmed Musa takes the field. The Nigerian is blessed with the gift of Mercury, and is often the messenger, delivering good news around the edge of the box, with his clever link-up plays and lightning pace on the turn, and an eye for goal. Essentially, another Sadio Mane.
Musa who has a tendency to cut in, needs to be pushed onto his weaker foot and keep his diagonal runs to a minimum.
#3 Christian Fuchs
Fuchs is the moving fulcrum that Leicester depend on more decisively to bring the ball out of their defence. Blessed with decent pace and panache on the ball, the full-back relishes making inroads into the opposition midfield, and backup as an extra man in the centre on occasions for Leicester against Hull – if Arsenal need to establish their style, Fuchs is one player they need to make sure sees very little of the ball on the counter – by doubling up against him.