Leicester City vs. Arsenal Premier League preview
We have another away day, and this time at the King Power Stadium, the home of Leicester City.
It’s been a mixed season for Leicester, with the untimely death of their owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha. Seasoned manager Brendan Rodgers has also come in, and despite not achieving fully at Liverpool, he has achieved much at Celtic.
But he’s no dead manager, and given our performance at Wolves, he’d want our scalp. Let’s not forget that he beat us at Anfield 5-1 in the “slip” season, and has high aspirations to get into the top six.
There clearly is a race to be the best of the rest – and we’re a good test for him to show this.
As for us, it’s pretty much a win, or avoiding defeat, that’s paramount. Man United and Chelsea play each other this weekend too, and perhaps the best result is a United win or a draw.
What’s more than certain though is that top four at his point is not in our hands.
Leicester, as stated, is looking to get into top six in the long-term, and this season can be seventh and enter the Europa League potentially.
This is akin to Wolves and Watford, which all are in a close bunch behind the top six. This can be boosted given Man City playing Watford in the FA Cup Final, with the Europa League place transferred to the league.
So Leicester City won’t be on the beach, so to speak.
They have something to play for. And Vardy, who has scored a number of goals this season, and who turned us down of course, would want to add to our away day miseries.
I believe for us, a win is important. It would be opportune to turn around the Wolves result, though for us on that day, Emery didn’t get it wrong entirely. I believe he chose a strong line-up, and personally had little issue with the back four he initially utilised.
Though vs. Wolves, we were limp, lacked incisiveness, and committed several defensive errors leading to goals.
I feel our away performances are down to confidence issues – as well as the players not being up for it tactically and positionally.
We dominated possession for the most part at Wolves, but then didn’t really capitalise on it. Had we done so, who knows? I feel we have the capacity to get away results, and whilst Wolves played well, we played into their hands and didn’t really show the fight nor mentality to desire a result.
We need to show the defensive capacities, mentality, and positional senses to get the result. We can do this, but this is opportune to prove we can.
Leicester will press, and look to exploit our weaknesses. Emery will anticipate this, and I expect a strong line-up again. Though it’s in our hands, and we cannot mess it up like in the last two league games.
I’d favour this here:
We need to be competitive, and akin to other games away from home, do our utmost to match them. Recent away games have all had a mix of pressing, physicality, and counter-attacking and we need to anticipate this and if possible learn from our errors and mishaps.
Auba is still coming back from injury, but Laca needs to improve from the Wolves display.
The midfield three need to be as dogged as they can be creative. And the back three must go without any significant errors and calamities. As mentioned prior, Vardy is capable of exploiting any mistakes on our part.
Mkhitaryan hasn’t prospered lately, but I feel he has a better finishing ability than Iwobi, who has done reasonably well in later months.
The goalkeeper and defence pick themselves largely. Though Leno, with some great displays this season, must enhance from the Wolves game.
Leicester City 2-2 Arsenal
I feel this will be a high-scoring game, and one we may not lose. Leicester did well in the opening periods in the game at the Emirates, but our quality overrode them ultimately. This game will be harder, but we do have it within ourselves to get a decent result.
We must though, given the Man U/Chelsea game, avoid defeat. If we do, and United can avoid defeat to Chelsea, we’re in the driving seat for top four, and perhaps could play our good friends in the competition next season. Though it should be as fellow league qualifiers and NOT with them as reigning European Champions. I did my very best not to throw up when writing the preceding sentence.