Emery may have to abandon caution to get a result against United.

Unai Emery will need to instil a ruthless mentality in his players to beat a driven Manchester United side that doesn’t give up on lost causes and is brimming with desire and confidence.

From the first whistle, Arsenal are going to have to take the game to their rivals, harass and press at every opportunity and deprive Lukaku or Rashford of the service they need.

Failure to maintain a high tempo or slacken the hold on this game would hand United an advantage and gift them opportunities that we know they will take.

Arsenal have to be clinical because they have squandered numerous chances in recent games and at this level, one missed chance at a crucial time, could see the pendulum swing in the opposite direction.

Lacazette and Aubameyang will have to make up for a series of surprising misses which they normally bury without giving any thought. Aubameyang in particular seems to have a clogged radar and hasn’t been as sharp since his return from injury.

The looming threat of Lukaku, a man built like an industrial oven, will need to be negated and one hopes that task falls to the insanely brave Koscileny or the enthusiastic Sokratis.

However, the Greek defender will have to show more savvy than he did against Rennes, when he dished out three attempts to retrieve the ball and two of those interventions resulted in a yellow and red card.

Arsenal seem to be on a run on unfortunate cards and any sending off in this game will have dire consequences, Granit Xhaka take note. 

The Swiss internationals mistiming of a tackle, has taken him extremely close to seeing the contents of the refs top pocket and a tackle from behind in the NLD with Spurs was as close as you can get without receiving a card.

Emery has said that that he may employ a change of tactics for the visitors and that he wants to be bold.

How much of Emery’s proposed tactical changes are specifically for Solskjaer ears is hard to say but the Spaniard does have a habit of mixing it up for certain matches.

Could this flummery mean a full 90 minutes for Denis Suarez ?

Well as scripts go, it’s the stuff of fantasy football. A high profile English team that hasn’t got two coconuts to rub together, manages to loan a gifted Spaniard for £2m.

He can’t get a full game for love nor money and then gets the nod for a game of immense importance, that could determine the clubs immediate future.

All that’s missing is a debut hat trick. Okay, that’s more Hollywood than Fantasy football but you get the idea.

Emery may feel he has to roll the dice to get the result he wants, with a squad who’s form fluctuates so alarmingly that you can’t predict any outcome.

Arsenal need to show some balls and purpose, with games on short supply in the Premiership and time running out.

Every dropped point makes qualification to the champions league less likely and we’ll be forced into a position where mathematicians are involved in the run in, to try and intensify the existing drama.

 

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