Arsenal Vs Manchester United second leg preview

5 05 2009

Much like the above swoosh advertisement, this game is dripping with drama and not enough Cantona. And for the the first part we, along with Arsenal, are very fortunate, as this could so easily be a glorified friendly.

United nearly steamrolled the weak knees and Swiss-less Swiss cheese defense of the Gunners during the Old Trafford opening but Manuel Almunia, Man Utd’s inability to capitalize and a little bit of luck have this semifinal anything but over as the tie heads to the Emirates.

As usual with an opening 1-0 home win, the away team has the advantage. The away team hits first – be it even a lucky bounce or an own goal from the home side – and suddenly three goals appears to be three Everests on top of one another needing to be climbed. Sans sherpa. Or in this case sans the cup-tied Andrei Arshavin.

You’ve got to think an away goal for Arsenal wouldn’t have been a bonus, but damn near necessary. Can you see ManUtd losing by two? Not under normal circumstances. Can you see them not scoring? Not I. It’d take either a collapse at the back or a devilishly Red Devil red card for Arsenal to skate through at the end of regulation. It would take something entirely uncharacteristic of Man Utd, to sum it up.

On the other hand, Arsenal possibly have Robin van Persie back and have already beaten Utd at the Emirates once this season – and this when they were, to put it politely, not very good. A repeat of that 2-1 on the back of a Nasri brace would do nothing but send them crashing out with mild consolation, but this Arsenal team is better than the one of November 8th.

They’d just lost the week before to Stoke, lost again the week post-ManU at home to Villa and then found themselves on the wrong end of a 3-0 scoreline on the blue side of Manchester on November 22nd. And their next league loss…hasn’t happened. In fact they’ve only lost “three” times since then: to Chelsea in the FA Cup, 1-0 to Roma in the Champions League round of 16 second leg (but they still went through on penalties so it’s not much of a loss) and last week at Old Trafford. Suffice it to say, they’re a bit “hot”. Or “good”. Whichever you prefer. And they’re definitely up for it.

Good enough to beat Manchester United by two or keep them at bay with a 1-0 scoreline for 120 minutes? You wouldn’t think so, but that’s why they play the games.

Prediction: I don’t like Ronaldo, but I also don’t tend to bet against him. Not yet anyway. 1-1.

Bonus Prediction: Cristiano Ronaldo will score a blinding volley in the 94th minute with a ball which had just deflected off the crossbar. Call it a hunch.

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2 responses

5 05 2009
govind

bravo !!! my predictions 2-1 man u … (surprised im giving arsenal a goal ??? well its their home and things like tht .. ) and one rooney one ronaldo …

2 06 2009
KrisBelucci

da best. Keep it going! Thank you

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