The Premier League is back after two weeks of the international break, with Arsenal hosting Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday and all hopes are high that the Arsenal can make a change in their destiny with the remaining 9 games of the season.
It will be a game mixed with expectations that either Arsenal will give its fans a great welcome back to football with a win over Liverpool? Or a shocker, as Mikel Arteta will be without central defender David Luiz.
Formerly, facing the league champions will cause panic in the mind of supporters but it may not be so this time, as Jurgen Klopp’s team have won just 4 out of their last 15 league games, a big fall when being compared to their title-winning run last season. Ordinarily, one can say what is wrong in the Merseyside camp is a mere lack of goals but the issue may run deeper than it looks.
By contrast, Arsenal can be said to be stronger than the year before as they’ve lost just 3 games since Christmas, and with the last game against West-Ham, Arsenal can be said to have improved and to now be a team that has a fighting spirit.
To be honest, there must be concerns about the gunners mostly if they crash out of the Europa League after playing Slavia Prague, that is why Arsenal must ensure they have a good run in the last quarter of the season, so as to move up in the League rank and take both opportunities as to qualifying for European football next season and hopefully, they can make a worthy run in the Europa League, probably winning the title yeah?
Arteta May have to contend with fatigue as almost 15 squad players were representing their countries over the week, although it will be on both sides (Liverpool included). Arsenal will hope to win this fixture, reminiscing about the last time where Reiss Nelson and Alexandre Lacazette’s goals helped the gunners secure a 2-1 win at Merseyside.
The win over Liverpool will help build European momentum when Arsenal welcomes their Czech Republic rival Slavia Prague for Europa League round 16 matches at the Emirates.
As far as injuries are concerned, the gunners have just one fear as Emile-Smith Rowe was left out of the England U-21 squad after having a knock, but he will be assessed for the Saturday game.
Also, Bukayo Saka May be left out of the squad with a hamstring injury and is being assessed weekly, Arsenal will also be without David Luiz.
Aside from that, it is fatigue that may be Arteta’s concern with Martin Odegaard and Kieran Tierney caught up in the National team, although the former played less and another player who should take the rest is Granit Xhaka who played at least 80% of the Switzerland games.
Leno; Cedric, Holding, Pablo Mari, Tierney, Pepe, T. Partey, Xhaka, Odegaard, Willian, Aubameyang,
Jurgen Klopp has a handful of injured players in his squad, but luck is returning to his side as key players are returning from injury.
Divock Origi and Roberto Firmino were left out of the squad in their recent match against wolves, but are expected to be fit to face Arsenal.
Virgil van Dijk, Jordan Henderson and Joel Matip are some of the key players who haven’t yet recovered.
Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Phillips, Kabak, Robertson; Thiago, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Jota, Mane.
Arsenal 2 vs. 1 Liverpool
Match Preview by Adeyemo Adesola