It would be incredibly stupid to think that Huddersfield are going to just roll over when they encounter an Arsenal side at the Emirates that is on a high, having found enviable momentum.
I expect a full bloodied encounter from a side struggling for points and with absolutely nothing to lose. Huddersfield’s position at present is not a true reflection of the quality they have or their footballing philosophy.
Confidence is key and at the moment, it’s in short supply but I agree with a great many others that they have the all the tools to stay up.
They are caught in a dogfight with six other clubs to avoid relegation and are currently just one point above the dreaded bottom three, which will surely encourage them to come out all guns blazing.
Their main problem is similar to a host of other clubs desperately trying to avoid the drop, lack of goals whilst conceding too many at the other end. Fortunately for them, the fixtures ahead only include Arsenal and Manchester United, then it all seems slightly more achievable with games against Newcastle, Southampton and Fulham, all of which are in the same boat.
Kongolo, Stankovic, Hadergjonaj, Jorgensen and Mooy all have quality if selected but up against the big teams, the failure to provide the frontline has crippled the cause. Against Bournemouth, Huddersfield were just short in terms of delivery to make a game of it.
Running your socks off and getting into key area’s doesn’t count the same as goals and at times it was like chasing shadows with a series half chances and squandered chances, that will have filled David Wagner’s team with regret.
Arsenal should have way too much for Huddersfield, even with their depleted options due to injury. The big questions are concerned with the middle and at the back at present.
Will Ozil feature, will Ramsey be fit and who will replace Rob Holding but there is at least some good news with Granit Xhaka, is ready to return and as much as I would love to rest and protect Lucas Torreira, it looks unlikely.
Hopefully, Arsenal can regroup after a tough week against Spurs and a brutal encounter with Manchester United. I wouldn’t be surprised if Emery rotates a couple of fringe players but this is not a match to experiment wildly, although I suspect Emery will resist that particular temptation as much as he can.
My main concern is the absence of form in Alex Iwobi, his contribution has decreased over the last few matches and he must be extremely close to exhausting the Spaniard’s patience with the likes of Maitland Nile’s almost begging for a start.
No doubt Emery must be tempted to make that change for at least the first 45 with an option to shuffle if it’s not working well. I fully expect an Arsenal win by at least two goals after the Huddersfield resistance falls away, let’s hope we are back to the side that tormented and toyed with Spurs.
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