We are moments away from 1st leg European Champions League tie between classics game of Man Utd and Arsenal. Both of the teams have just been knocked out from FA Cup this season – Man Utd lose to Everton through penalty shoot out and Arsenal beaten by London rivals, Chelsea due to error made by Fabianski.
My hope for Arsenal in getting into both FA Cup and ECL finals shattered, but still it is ok for me. They are young gunners, which there’s a long way to go. Fabianski’s error during semi against Chelsea is acceptable, considering he was like Almunia when Arsenal played Barcelona in Champions League final years ago. With just a few first team appearances and playing in a huge stadium with large crowd of spectators, certainly it will give some effect towards one’s performance. Nervous players will succumbed to pressure if unable to cope with such pressure.
With Almunia back between the goal post and reinforcements of skipper Fabregas who scored two goals against Middlesborough, I hope Gunners can provide another classic match against arch rival Man Utd. For me, win is not important as Gunners is playing away, but away goals will certainly give some hope for young Gunners to earn one silverware this season.
Should Arsenal get away with one or two away goals, I am happy enough. However, I do hope the match will be an entertaining match, since the two well respected managers have cooled down war of words. I can see mutual respect in such comments between Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson for the past few months.
Here are some facts between these two teams (taken from yahoo sports..or is it Eurosport?):
– These two sides have never met in European competition before.
– Manchester United have kept more clean sheets than any other side in the Champions League this season – seven.
– Of the sides left in the competition, United have the best defence; conceding only five goals.
– This will be the 38th time that Arsene Wenger and Alex Ferguson have met as managers. Wenger has won 14 and Ferguson has won 13 of the previous 37.
– The away side has only prevailed once in the last eight meetings between these two teams.
– Of the previous 14 all-English Champions League ties, the home side have only lost on two occasions.
– Arsenal have not managed to defeat an English side in the Champions League before, in four attempts.
– The Gunners have won just three times in their last 13 Champions League away matches.
– Manchester United are unbeaten in 20 Champions League matches at Old Trafford.
– The Red Devils are unbeaten in a record 23 Champions League games.
– This is Manchester United’s 11th appearance in a European Cup semi-final. Only Real Madrid (21), Milan (13) and Bayern Munich (12) have appeared in more.
– Despite getting to the semi-final stages, United have only managed to win four of their 10 Champions League games so far this season.
– Arsenal have been caught offside more than any other team in the Champions League so far this season – 42.
– Denilson has had more touches of the ball than any other player in this term’s Champions League – 938.
Also, read this to add more adrenalin between fans of Man Utd and Arsenal.
I do hope, at the final whistle 1st leg semi final CL match, no red cards and no fights..just entertaining match..and should Arsenal lose, not more than 2 goals difference and at least have one away goal.
Words on Old Trafford and Emirates streets: Glory glory United or Glory glory Gunners (erk???)?