Match Analysis: Celtic vs. Arsenal (first game)
For UEFA Champions League Qualifying to the Group Stage, 18th August 2009
Ground: Celtic Park
Boruc (GK) – Loovens – Caldwell – Fox – Hinkel – N’Guemo (McCourt) – Brown – Donati (McDonald) – Samaras (Fortune) – Maloney – McGeady
Almunia (GK) – Sagna – Gallas – Vermaelen – Clichy – Song – Fabregas – Denilson – Van Persie – Bendtner – Arshavin (Diaby)
What I like about Arsenal?
The new system really suit them, their passing game, how they dominate ball possession, and their way to control the game tempo.
Focus on: Arsenal
This is the second official match for Arsenal in 2009-10 season, the first was in the Premier League with away great win against Everton (1-6). The Professor Wenger kept his faith with the new formation (4-3-3) which is modified to (4-3-2-1).
Van Persie most of time playing as the only forward supported from Arshavin from the left wing and Bendtner from the right flank, Cesc was alongside Song and Denilson both free up Cesc to let him do forward runs, open gaps, and link with the three men attacking line (Persie – Arshavin – Bendtner).
The back four line did well really, the new recruitment Vermaelen really impressed with his solid tackling and good covering like clearing the counter attack Celtic launched after Van Perise lose the ball possession in the first half before Celtic player (Brown) get to the ball, this was a great clearance by Vermaelen. Another point I liked about the Belgian man his great ball possession skill he is comfortable with the ball in his legs.
Gallas according to Wenger is playing his best football these days proving to be forming a great defensive partnership with Vermaelen. Song impress me especially in his aerial ability to gain the possession he almost won all aerial duals while Denilson did well with the ball.
Arsenal have the best wing backs pair in the Premier League (Sagna & Clichy) alongside Chelsea (Bosingwa & Cole) and great defensive (if Vermaelen keeps his great performance) due (Gallas & Vermaelen) plus a sensational midfielder Cesc Fabergas, who maybe is going to enjoy his best season with Arsenal yet to come (even better than 2007-08 season).
Wenger formation change look well suited the Gunners, but I have doubts over Bendtner position and Van Persie attacking position maybe they need time to adjust to the system change or simply this positions don’t get the best of their ability. I mean Van Persie enjoy doing forward runs, link-up with wing-backs, one two situations, and making goalscoring chances plus his extraordinary talent and skills.