After the resounding 3-0 victory over London rivals Chelsea in the weekend, attention shifts to the UEFA Champions League as we welcome Swiss Super League defending Champion, FC Basel to the Emirates.
An end-to-end encounter is expected at the Emirates as both teams are brimming with confidence at the moment. Worthy of note is the fact that this is the first time we’ll be playing against Basel and our very own Mohammed Elneny and Granit Xhaka will be facing their old club come Wednesday night with Xhaka facing his elder brother – Taulant
Stats of Interest
Basel will come to the Emirates and England with a lot of confidence as they:
▪are undefeated in 12 matches so far this season, winning 11 and drawing just 1.
▪have lost just once in 10 encounters against English Opponents.
▪have drawn their last 3 matches in the UEFA Champions League.
▪have lost 4 in their last 7 away games in the Champions League.
The first two stats are a major concern most especially the fact that they’ve been a menace for English clubs like Chelsea, Manchester United, Liverpool in times past. However, their relatively poor away record in the competition could be at Arsenal’s advantage.
Tactics and Possible Line-up
Though Basel’s manager Urs Fisher is a disciplined tactician and a lover of good, fast moving game, he will possibly look to tweak his team’s approach defensively against a free flowing Arsenal side with unbridled fluidity. Also, we should be on the lookout for young promising winger Renato Steffen, club captain Delgado and also Ivorian International striker Seydou Doumbia who could cause all real threats in the game.
PREDICTION: With the poise, confidence and belief in the Arsenal team at the moment, I believe we are the clear favourite. So I’m going for an Arsenal win.