Match Preview: Basel vs Arsenal | Gooner Talk


Match Preview: Basel vs Arsenal

Written by Bill McLoughlin

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In what is the final game of the Champions League group stage, Arsenal will travel to Switzerland to face Basel in what on the face of it, looks like a dead rubber game. Although Arsenal could finish top if they win and PSG lose, it is more than likely that the Gunners will once again finish second in the group. Coming into the game, Arsenal’s form has picked up somewhat after hammering (no pun intended) West Ham 5-1 at the weekend and beating Bournemouth the weekend before that. Although both wins sandwiched a very poor and predictable loss to Southampton in the League Cup, Wenger will be elated that his team have finally got through their torrid November form.

With qualification already secured, it is unsure what team Wenger will play on Tuesday night. Wenger could either stick with the team that performed so well on Saturday or field a relatively weakened team with one eye on this weekend’s game against Stoke City. Which ever team Wenger does decide to field, it should be enough to beat a fairly average Basel team, we hope. Barring the aforementioned defeat to Southampton in the EFL Cup, Wenger’s men remain unbeaten since their opening day loss to Liverpool, albeit that unbeaten run has covered over the three draws and a loss last month, putting them odds on favourites to win with many sites, which can be seen at, who provide a list of all the best betting sites.  


A key actor in Arsenal’s stuttering form last month, was the absence of star midfielder, Santi Cazorla. The Spaniard has had a recurrence of his Achilles and as of yet has not set timetable for his return. Without Cazorla, Arsenal have lacked any creativity in midfield and have been unable to move the ball forward at pace. In the last few weeks, however, Wenger has inserted summer singing, Granit Xhaka into the line up and consequently, Arsenal’s play has vastly improved. The ex-Basel man has finally given Arsenal a base to start their attacks from and will be key in the subsequent months in keeping Arsenal on track.

Arsenal go into this game with intent on starting the month off well, and as their home form suggests, that could well likely happen. Arsenal are unbeaten away from home, winning seven matches and drawing three, ominous signs for Basel.




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