Gunners v. Devils: Most Important Match for Arsenal and the Most Difficult!

Robbie MatthewsContributor INovember 4, 2008

With Arsenal struggling to get results in the Premier League, the challenge this Saturday is greatly increased by facing a Man Utd team who have been revitalized by the return of superstar midfielder, Cristiano Ronaldo. 

Arsenal would have fancied their chances a month ago, when they were bordering on top of the Premiership and playing the best football seen for a while in England.

However, the Arsenal train has fallen off the rails with two wins, two draws—including a shocking result against Tottenham, when they conceded two goals in injury time—and two defeats which happened against Hull and Stoke, two promoted sides.

Compared to the rest of the "Big Four", Arsenal seem to lack a number of things, which are likely to hamper them against the Red Devils. 



Arsenal have lacked a real captain for sometime, someone who can inspire and lead the team to a Premiership title. Indeed, Patrick Vieira was the last man to lead Arsenal to the Premier League crown. This has been a worrying concern, since it seems that the current Arsenal side need someone of the maturity and stature of Vieira to lead them through.



The average age of the Arsenal squad varies between 22-24.

With this comes a great level of immaturity to situations. This was proved against Stoke with Robin van Persie's red card due to pushing another player because he wasn't happy with a decision.

This is just one of the many examples, another would be the memorable moment last year against Birmingham when the captain, William Gallas, went and cried on the midfield line due to a penalty. Surely if Arsenal have any hopes of winning the title, they would have to "grow up", or get some more experience in.


So to the Emirates, against arguably the best squad in the world.

With the experience and skill of the squad what can Arsenal hope to do?

Arsenal will surely have to target the right side to try to exploit Gary Neville although, despite his age, he is usually pretty solid.

On paper, there doesn't seem a way for Arsenal to get a result since the weaknesses shown by Arsenal are more prominent than those of Man Utd. However, Arsenal will be glad that Hull scored three goals against Man Utd last weekend at Old Trafford, and that should give them some confidence.

However, with the breaking news today that Adebayor will be out injured, the challenge is now greater, since van Persie is also out (suspended). 

There will be goals, there will be controversy, but with Arsenal v. Man Utd, that is obviously expected!

But Arsenal know that if they don't get a result against the Devils, that they can kiss their dreams of the Premiership title goodbye.