West Brom vs. Arsenal – Premier League Match Preview
A commanding performance against Napoli in Champions League has continued to make Arsenal the hot topic of conversation in England and abroad. However, the squad has the opportunity to enter the interlull finishing strong in the league. The challenge? Facing a West Brom side that has proved tricky in the past and one that challenged us quite well in the League Cup.
The difference is having our first team squad available this time around. In the league cup, we fielded a side of untested reserves and a sprinkling of starters, and struggled to contain West Brom at times, ultimately winning by the skin of our teeth in penalties. Our lineup will likely be nearly identical to the starting unit that played against Napoli, with the sole exception of Sagna, who picked up a short-term injury. Jenkinson will be ready to take his place, and has been very capable of playing that right back position.
This means that the defensive midfield unit of Arteta and Flamini will be deployed again, with the former owning possession and positioning himself very well, and the latter bringing a physical presence that the squad seemed to have lacked last season. That also means we have the opportunity to see the midfield exploits of Ramsey, Özil, and Rosicky once again, which is something I will relish. The ball movement against Napoli was a dream to witness. Giroud also chipped in a goal against Napoli, which could be just the ticket to secure our 3 points against West Brom.
With that said, WBA will not be an easy matchup, as our last few meetings have proved that they are not as weak as their table position lets on. They have some dangerous weapons and can turn the pressure on late in the game, so nabbing a few goals early is crucial.
There has been a lethal edge to our side lately, however, and we look to once again dominate with our impressive midfield. Our entire team was clicking as a defensive unit against Napoli, and a clean sheet would be a nice reward for our defensive and goalkeeping unit. Let’s shut out the Baggies and allow us to comfortably retain our position at the top of the table.