After bitter-sweet victory against West Ham United in Quarter-finals of League Cup, Arsenal will be looking to hand themselves a perfect start to festive season.
Liverpool battered Arsenal 4-0 last time when these sides met earlier this season and Arsene Wenger will be up for revenge. The match against Liverpool will hand Arsenal start to Christmas week as having to face Crystal Palace and West Bromwich in tricky fixtures further.
On one hand Liverpool are in seventh heaven after teams failing to keep up with their ‘pacey’ attack and the Reds have won last four away league fixtures at least by margin of three goals, on the other side Arsenal have second best home record, with only defeat coming at home was against Manchester United.
We can easily call it as ‘big game’ for both the clubs, three points here can give some fair advantage for Champions League place.
Yet the talk of the town remains the return of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain back to Emirates. We will certainly hear lots of jeers when this man get the ball at his feet not because he left the gunners but because in the way he took his road out the door.
When and Where?
Emirates Stadium will host late Friday night fixture on 22nd December, 2017 at 7:45 PM BST. Referee Martin Atkinson will head the proceedings on field.
Striker Olivier Giroud will not feature throughout the fixture with hamstring problems caused during League Cup match against West Ham midweek. Aaron Ramsey accompanies Giroud on the sideline with hamstring problem as well.
Francis Coquelin was forced off in the West Ham fixture, but will be in contention for Liverpool. Defender Shkodran Mustafi returns from thigh injury.
Alberto Moreno is not available for the fixture with Ankle problems. Striker Daniel Sturridge remains doubtful with hamstring problems as well as potential involvement of defender Joel Matip’s is not concrete.
English winger Adam Lallana is back again after making his second appearance from the bench against Bournemouth. The visitors welcome Emre Can after his service towards suspension.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
“I believe that Liverpool is very good going forward so you need overall a good defensive performance.
“I have to analyse that well and you have to guess a little bit who will play [for Liverpool]. It is not always the same – it depends on their personnel.
“They have plenty of offensive players and, looking at them recently, they have changed a lot their teams so it is difficult to guess. But I will try to see what I do. For me, the most important thing is we turn up with a positive performance. We have been strong at home and it is important we continue to dictate our game at home.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp
They [Arsenal] are a complete football team, able to do everything. They can switch and change styles.
“Against us it happened quite often that they played a lot of long balls, with Giroud. But he cannot play (due to a hamstring injury) and that will change a few things maybe.
“But they are able to create, they are able to play football. They will have a strong side, whoever will play.”