This is not the first time a Fabregas-inspired team has gone into a showdown with Manchester United supposedly without any chance to win the game. Back in the 06/07 season, Arsenal were missing key players, namely Henry. The media didn’t give us a chance. Our fans didn’t give us chance. We were simply a small roadblock to United’s title assault. We had no chance in this game. Or so we were told.
United came out and underestimated our team. They believed the hype, and conversely the media hype angered our players and gave them added motivation. We hung around until Cesc slipped a delightful ball for Adebayor to toe-poke him. Game, set, match. Three points were in the bag. An unprobable win? Yes. Surprising? Not so much.
Because Arsenal on their day are as fluid an attacking team as any. Yes, right now we lack confidence, but if the manager can convince our players to play without fear, we have a good chance. We are missing big players, of course, however do not underestimate the determination that will be on display Saturday. United will face the same problems all other teams face when they play us- they will have to get the ball from us to score. The outcomes of the big four showdowns rarely go according to form. We are down, but not out. We will still field a team of 11 gifted players who will want to win. Do not underestimate the importance that our team will put on this game.
Over the past week, I have read countless articles telling us we have no chance in this game, and maybe those articles have justification. However, football is not a game of logic, and anything can happen. We must go into Emirates tomorrow and create the environment we as fans should generate. The players will need it. Be behind our players, encouraging them. God knows Bendnter will need all the encouragement he can get.
Lastly, it is notable that Ferguson is not taking this game lightly. It is a testament to the fact that, over his long career, he has lost enough games like this to know that the big teams always have a chance. United will arguably be as scared of us as we of them. Arsenal are the most unique football team they will play. On our day, our speed of thought, movement, and passing is second to none. The United players most likely understand the huge task they will have in tracking all of our runners. Let’s complicate things by firing up our players. Give them that small dose of confidence they have been lacking recently. If we as fans do that, then anything can happen.