Arsenal FC manager Arsene Wenger has insisted that his side must retain possession in order to stop Luis Suarez and Liverpool FC.
Liverpool host Arsenal in a highly anticipated clash on Saturday and the Gunners go into this game with wonderful record at Anfield in recent times. The Reds have won just one of their last 13 matches against Arsenal and none of their last six matches at Anfield. But with SAS firing in all cylinders, Liverpool does have a wonderful opportunity to change that record.
Arsene Wenger believes that the best way to prevent the Suarez – Sturridge partnership to flourish in this game is to control possession. The Frenchman believes that his side should stick to their footballing philosophy along solid defensive organisation at the back.
“[The key is] for us to dominate the game and leave them as few balls as possible. That will be one of our targets of course.
“At Liverpool the task might be a bit more difficult but the philosophy on our side has to be the same – to master the ball and to have the ball and to dominate the game.
“Liverpool have a strong offensive force with Sturridge, with Suarez, with Coutinho, with Sterling behind. All these players can score goals and make a difference. So what you want on our side is a strong defensive performance.” – The Arsenal manager told the press.
While Wenger gives us his thought on what he thinks his side should do to win against Liverpool, here is our thoughts on what the Reds should do to win this game.
— TheHardTackle (@TheHardTackle) February 6, 2014
The Gunners endured a fairly disappointing January transfer window where they signed only Kim Kallstrom, who turned out to be carrying an injury and will be out for a while. Arsenal have already been linked with a lot of targets for next summer, including Mario Balotelli and of course Julian Draxler, but Arsenal Wenger insisted that at this moment his only concentration is on the next game.
“You understand certainly very well that my focus is on Liverpool and not so much on the transfer market. My eye is not on the transfer market at the moment.” – Wenger added.
The title race has already had a lot of twists and turns and this season is expected to go down to the wire. Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho has played down his side’s title chances and said they are not the favourites. Arsene Wenger was asked about these comments and the Frenchman said:
“I don’t know, they are in there. It is easy to move out if you don’t want! I just think they are in there, of course. We focus on our side and do not listen too much to what people say. What is important is that it is a period where you show up with good performances.”
Arsenal climbed back to the top spot in the Premier League table as Manchester City lost to Chelsea in the last game week. The result only reinstated Wenger’s claims that there are no outright favourites or invincible team this season.
“I told you that [everyone could lose games] one month ago, and you did not believe me. There is no invincible team I think because there are so many quality teams in the Premier League. It is just about how close you are to your best every time which decides the game.” – He explained
Arsenal will face Bayern Munich later this month in their Champions League knockout fixture. When asked about how easy or difficult it is to change their focus from the Premier League to Europe, Wenger insisted that they take each game at the time. The Frenchman also said that he has kept a close watch on Bayern’s results and performance in the Bundesliga.
“We have gone for a policy that is to just take care of the next game, because the confidence level is so important to go into the big games that you want to build your strength up by winning every single game. That’s just what we want to do. After, we don’t really look at what kind of competition it is at the moment, because we know, in the situation we are in, the most important thing is to win our next game.
“Of course I look at their results and how they behave, but not more than that. That will become more intense when we get closer to that game. At the moment it is just of interest, of course I look at them.” – Wenger said.