That fateful night in 2006 must still remain in the memories of all Arsenal fans, the Gunners were leading 1-0 against Barcelona in the Champions League final but were down to 10-men after the sending off of Jens Lehmann, Arsenal in fact took the lead through Sol Campbell but they couldn’t hold onto their lead and ultimately lost the game.
This was the last time Arsenal made it to the final of the Champions League, a tournament Arsene Wenger and the club have never won. Despite having a range of teams with good players, the Gunners always fail short in the competition but a new season with fit enough players, do the club from London have a chance?
Umpteenth time lucky?
In the last four seasons, Arsenal have been knocked out of the competition in the round of 16 stage, last season they were expected to breeze past Monaco but a 3-1 home loss didn’t help the Gunners as they were knocked out again. Arsene does have a strong team and has always had one but the need to keep them fit is a problem which is the biggest issue that they could face.
Arsenal need to keep everyone fit and raring to go, Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla have to play at the top of their game but the other players also have to do their bit. Theo Walcott and Olivier Giroud have to score the goals but for some reason they have not been firing at all this season. The Gunners do have a weapon in midfield with Francis Coquelin providing the cover for the defence and playing out of his skin. The same could be said about Petr Cech, who is set to provide Arsenal with stability in between the sticks.
The problem Arsenal face is that they could be facing some tough teams should they made it out of their group. They would be playing Bayern Munich twice in the group but the other teams should not pose a threat to the English side. The fact that they could finish second in the group could cost them an easy tie since they would play against a group topping side.
The other issue for the Gunners would be the form of their top players. Arsenal might have a lot of good players but only a couple can change the complexion of the game and if they go missing the Gunners lose out a lot. Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil would be the two players the Gunners would be hopeful on but the likes of Wilshere, Ramsey and Cazorla have to do their bit in midfield.
The lack of a top striker and a world-class central defender could cost Arsenal dearly and with a long season for the Gunners and the possibility of facing some tougher sides in the competition, Arsenal won’t win the Champions League, in fact, no club outside Bayern Munich, Real Madrid or Barcelona could do it, to be honest.