It is unusual to say this so early in the season but the next three games could define our season. Arsene Wenger has spoken of the importance of qualifying for the Champions League group stages not just for the money but the boost of playing against the best teams in the world as well as attracting world class signings to the club.
Arsenal will need to go into this game at full throttle and try and finish the tie off before the return leg. Playing away to a Turkish team is never easy and Besiktas have Demba Ba, a player with Premier League experience as well as a player who came through the Arsenal ranks, Oguzhan Ozyakup.
If Arsenal make the mistake of leaving the tie against Besiktas hanging in the balance, they will have to play Everton at Goodison Park with one eye on the return leg against Besiktas at the Emirates stadium. So two immediate difficult away games to contend with. One for the chance of playing in the Champions League group stages and the other to avoid playing catch up so early in the season assuming of course they fail to win a very strong motivated Everton side. They need to get a convincing win in Turkey to make the return leg a dead rubber otherwise they risk player burn out with games coming thick and fast.
However Arsenal fans have three reasons to feel confident. First, Arsenal has an extremely large squad to call upon. With Alexis Sanchez, Ramsey, Wilshere, Rosicky, AOC, Joel Campbell and very soon Ozil and Theo Walcott, they have creativity and pace in abundance while Giroud provides the strength and muscle to bully past stubborn defenders.
Arsenal also have confidence going into this game after kicking off their Premier League campaign with a win against Crystal Palace, a win that required patience and in the past would have resulted in a draw. To put it simply, Arsenal have learnt how to win ugly, getting the result no matter what. They are determined to win as many trophies as they can lay their hands on.
The major reason is their manager who knows first and foremost what is required to make it to the group stage and also how to win trophies. He looks rejuvenated after winning the FA cup and is under the impression that his Arsenal team, a project that he has painstakingly put together, is finally ready to deliver.
Put all this factors together and you can understand why this Arsenal squad believe they can sweep all before them starting with Besiktas.