Tonight we’ll be facing arguably our toughest test of the season so far, with Liverpool making the trip down to the Emirates. We were truly shocking against West Ham in our opening game, but got off the mark against Crystal Palace. Arsene Wenger is confident we can continue in that vein against Brendan Rodgers’ side, and claims pace is key to getting the victory, as reported by The Guardian.
The Frenchman knows how important home form is, and insists we need to improve if we are to have any hope of clinching the title. The best teams often create a fortress like environment at their home ground, and we used to do the same at Highbury. The same can’t be said of the Emirates, and something really needs to change.
“You need to be strong at home that is for sure,” he said.
“If you want to win the championship you need to win your home games. It can happen that you lose the odd game but overall you need home strength.
“Against teams who came only to defend, we didn’t find the goal. But it happens to all the other teams as well. Normally you would think over 19 games you can sometimes be unlucky once or twice. Most of the time if you really dominate the games you will win.”
He was asked about the key to beating Liverpool ahead of our clash this Monday night, and stressed that playing with pace would be vital.
“[The key is to] play with good pace,” he continued.
Presumably by this the manager means the team needs to play at a high tempo, but many fans will be hoping for more than that.
Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have been consigned to the bench recently, much to the surprise of a number of fans. We have been stripped of much of our pace going forward, and it would be fantastic to see one or both of the English duo returned to the side.
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Our clash against Liverpool could prove vital as we look to stamp our authority on the league, and falling further behind the likes of Manchester City at this early stage would leave us playing catch up.