Arsenal Vs Liverpool: 3 Key Battles That’ll Decide The Outcome Of The Game

Arsenal would be facing Liverpool at The Emirates in their season opener on 14th August, Sunday 2016. The Gunners are in the midst of a serious defensive crisis with injuries to two key players in Mertesacker and Gabriel while Laurent Koscielny is not yet ready to be fit for the first game. There are going to be some changes in the starting lineup, which the in-form Liverpool team would look to exploit. Let’s look at the three key battles which will determine the outcome of the match.

Xhaka Vs Wijnaldum

Arsenal’s third most expensive signing ever would have a battle in his hand when he meets the Liverpool new boy Georginio Wijnaldum. The former Newcastle United midfielder scored 11 goals from midfield last season for the Magpies as well as supplying 5 assists. Only Riyad Mahrez contributed more in terms of goals from midfield. Xhaka has impressed in the friendlies so far but it will be interesting to see how he counters the threat of Wijnaldum on Sunday.

The Swiss international is a very intelligent player with a fierce combative attitude. The midfielder is tough in the tackle and never shies away from a challenge. Xhaka would need to keep his wits about him being particularly careful that while being combative in his duels, he doesn’t get booked unnecessarily or get sent off in his debut, as he has had a problem with his discipline in the Bundesliga last term receiving no less than 5 red cards. The outcome of the game would depend heavily on this battle.

Gibbs Vs Mane

There is a high chance of the usual left back Nacho Monreal being paired with Calum Chambers in the central defence for the match, which will put Kieran Gibbs in the left-back position. Gibbs would be facing a serious threat in Sadio Mane. The Senegalese joined Liverpool from Southampton where he dazzled with his pace, physicality and intelligent runs scoring 10 times in the Premier League in his debut season and 11 times in the next one.

Defender John Terry of Chelsea (L) clashes with Forward Sadio Mane of Liverpool (R) during their International Champions Cup (ICC) game at the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, California on July 27, 2016. / AFP / Mark Ralston (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

The explosive winger has good pace which he uses to great effect against defenders. Gibbs is also very fast and is a very good defender in 1v1 situations. It is going to be a fantastic battle of pace when the two would go head to head against each other. Arsenal’s left back can prove a point to his manager by nullifying Liverpool’s new signing, which will not only be a major setback for the attacking threat of the visitors but also one of the reasons based on which Arsenal can get points out of the tie.

Oxlade-Chamberlain Vs Alberto Moreno

This is the season where Oxlade-Chamberlain needs to step up and quash the doubts of him not being able to reach his desired level. Chamberlain had a very good preseason where he looked sharp and ready. There won’t be better opportunities to make a serious statement than August 14th when the Explosive English winger would be pitted against Alberto Moreno, who is not the best in his defensive positioning.

There would be spaces to exploit down the left-hand side with Liverpool’s left back overlapping and Arsenal should look to make use of that. The home side would be having two of the fastest players of their team on the right flank in Bellerin and Chamberlain which would be enough to trouble the visitors. The Ox, however, needs to make sure he shines against Liverpool making use of his set of skills, ensuring the home team starts the season in the best possible way.

The following two tabs change content below.

Arka Tarun Mukherjee

Arsenal fan and football expert, Arka Tarun Mukherjee actually used to play cricket at semi pro level. An ardent student of football tactics, ATM is very passionate about the tactical aspects of the game and has a dream of being a football manager in the future.

Share This Article

Leicester City Make A Brave Bid For Brazilian Star: A Statement Of Intent From The Foxes?

Next Story »

Should Chelsea Have Held On To This Exciting Attacker This Season?


  • Has Harry Maguire Solved Manchester United’s Defensive Problems?

    1 week ago

    In a summer that saw £1.41bn spent on transfers in the Premier League, one move stood out from the rest for several reasons. Harry Maguire is a ...

    Read More
  • Strength And Weakness Of This New Leeds United Signing And Where Will He Fit Into Bielsa’s Plans?

    2 months ago

    Leeds United have confirmed that they had completed the signing of Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Portuguese winger Helder Costa. The winger has joined initially on a year-long loan deal, but ...

    Read More
  • With Hay Confirming Forward Is Close To Joining Leeds United, We Do A Scout Report On The Player

    2 months ago

    Leeds United squandered a glorious opportunity to return to the top flight despite enjoying a boisterous start to their 2018-19 campaign. But a lack of depth, as ...

    Read More
  • A Full Profile On Liverpool’s First Summer Signing Sepp van den Berg: What He Will Bring To Anfield?

    2 months ago

    Liverpool have confirmed on their official website that Sepp van den Berg will complete his move to Anfield from PEC Zwolle in July. The Dutch teenager has become ...

    Read More
  • Liverpool Are On The Brink Of Sealing Move For This Defensive Ace: A Complete Scout Report

    2 months ago

    According to a recent report by the Telegraph, Liverpool have won the chase to secure the services of PEC Zwolle centre-back Sepp van den Berg during the summer transfer ...

    Read More