Arsenal’s Alexis Sanchez should line up for Chile in their Copa America Centenario semi-final clash with Colombia at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois on Thursday morning, and will be hoping to lead the defending champions to the final against Argentina. It could well be a repeat of the 2015 final, which saw Chile beat the Sky Blues on penalties, but the favourites still have a job to do against Colombia this week.
Archive for the ‘Arsenal Previews’
Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere came off the bench for England in Thursday’s 1-0 win over Portugal, and delivered a bright showing at Wembley to push his case for starting in the Euro 2016 opener against Russia. The 24-year-old played a part in the winning goal, laying the ball for Raheem Sterling to cross for Chris Smalling, and was typically comfortable on the ball.
Wilshere has featured in all three of England’s international friendlies ahead of this summer’s European Championships, and has boosted his match fitness in the last few weeks to be in good condition for the Russia clash. The Gunners playmaker still doesn’t know what his role will be in the side, as there’s stiff competition for places, but he’s done no harm to his cause so far.
Arsenal will have Spanish playmaker Santi Cazorla back for the first day of pre-season this summer, and manager Arsene Wenger has a conundrum of where to play him in 2016/17. The 31-year-old was withdrawn from his advanced role last year due to his lack of athleticism and the need for his ball retention and creativity in the deep-lying positions.
However, with the Gunners bolstering their midfield with some physicality and substance, Cazorla might be moved higher up the pitch again alongside the likes of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez. Cazorla’s ability shouldn’t be underestimated for Arsenal. Only Ozil averaged more chances created per game than the Spaniard, and having another playmaker in the attack can only be a benefit.
With Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger finally addressing the side’s deficiencies in midfield in the last two transfer windows, the Gunners will be confident of a bright campaign in 2016/17. Arsenal will be much more robust in the middle of the park, and will returning playmaker Santi Cazorla back from a lengthy injury.
Wenger still has questions to answer about further transfer targets, however. Supporters are delighted to see the club spending £30M on a defensive-midfielder, but a long-term injury to Danny Welbeck and the inconsistent form of Olivier Giroud has raised hopes that the London club will sign a new striker this summer.
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud scored three goals as the Gunners ran riot against relegated Aston Villa in their final Premier League outing to finish the season as runners-up. A second-half onslaught of goals sealed a comfortable victory, but up until the 78th minute the score was only 1-0 to the hosts.
Giroud opened the scoring minutes into the game, brilliantly heading home a Nacho Monreal cross past the hapless Aston Villa goalkeeper in the fifth minute of the game. His second of the game didn’t come for another 73 minutes and was courtesy of free-flowing football to cut open the Villa defence.
Arsenal lock horns with already-relegated Aston Villa in their final Premier League clash this weekend, and while the Gunners could still have a top-two finish to fight for, manager Arsene Wenger might use the opportunity to name fringe players in the side who haven’t heavily featured on Sunday.
The likes of David Ospina, Calum Chambers, Mikel Arteta and Joel Campbell might be given minutes after being completely unused in the second-half of the season, and a select few of the fringe players may be given a farewell ahead of a summer exit.
Arsenal hosts rock-bottom Aston Villa at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday, as the Gunners look to record a win in their efforts to finish the campaign as Premier League runners-up.
Arsene Wenger’s side will kick-off this game two points behind arch-rivals Tottenham, who currently occupy second. Spurs’ last game of the campaign is away at relegated Newcastle. Due to a better goal difference a point in the north east would ensure Mauricio Pochettino’s side finish second.
The Gunners head into this clash on the back of a 2-2 draw at Manchester City last time out. City took the lead through Sergio Aguero, but the lead lasted just two minutes as Olivier Giroud headed home an equaliser.
Manchester City and Arsenal go head-to-head at the Etihad Stadium on as both sides look to cement their places in the Champions League for next season.
Manchester City head into the clash on the back of Champions League heartbreak, as the Citizens suffered a 1-0 aggregate defeat against Real Madrid in the semi-finals on Wednesday night.
The defeat was a major blow to City who were appearing in their first Champions League semi-final. However, the Citizens now need to get back on track in the league, as suddenly the Citizens are looking over their shoulders nervously at neighbours Manchester United, who are four points behind Manuel Pellegrini’s men with an extra game to play.
Arsenal manger Arsene Wenger has urged his side to deliver against Manchester City this weekend to ensure of a top-three finish. The Gunners are desperate to avoid a Champions League playoff as it would mean more games not long after some players will have returned from this summer’s European Championships.
A fourth-placed finish in the Premier League would result in having to play a two-legged Champions League playoff which would disrupt their pre-season due to the travelling and preparation. Arsenal will have a lot of players in this summer’s European Championships which could see them unavailable for the Gunners until mid-July, and they’ll still be entitled to a summer holiday.
Arsenal travel to face Manchester City in the Premier League this weekend in a fixture they would normally dread. However, the Sky Blues have suffered a disappointing season under manager Manuel Pellegrini, and are in even worse shape ahead of their clash with the Gunners due to injuries and poor form which could result in a win for Arsene Wenger’s men.
City will be without captain Vincent Kompany at the heart of the defence and David Silva rom the midfield, while having suffered consecutive defeats in all competitions. Manchester City have failed to win four of their last five games too, and have a woeful head-to-head record against Arsenal. All these factors are playing into the hands of the Gunners at a time where they’re desperate for a win to silence their critics.