Arsenal face Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League but there is an absence of enthusiasm at present due to the chaos engulfing the Emirates.
With Arsenal looking for a polite way to sack Unai Emery and collecting the tab for the pleasure, football matters seem to be a distraction. Only when Arsenal stop dithering and appoint a successor will the seats be full and perhaps the team can regain its desire and focus.
Those I’ve spoken to believe there could be significant numbers missing from the crowd for the encounter against Eintracht Frankfurt. Many can’t see the significance of this second tier European adventure, one in which Arsenal have had their fair share of good fortune but that was only enjoyable when the Gunners weren’t so far off the pace in the premiership and in real danger of total disintegration.
Watching Emery in the dugout is like waiting for a police marksman to take the shot. He’s just waiting for the wind to drop and a signal to finish the job and it’s one that is inevitable because this team is only going through the motions at best.
Emery will change personnel again where he can, avoid any black cats and cross everything, in the hope of an Arsenal like performance but they’ve got to the stage where they could win 8-0 and it would mean very little compared to their woeful position in the Premier League.
Eintracht Frankfurt have an opportunity to rub salt into an open wound with Arsenal’s gaze elsewhere and the gunners luck could run out on Thursday.
The last time these two sides met, Arsenal helped themselves to a flattering and comprehensive win with goals for Willock, Saka and Aubameyang.
If you needed evidence of how unbalanced the score was, then perhaps you should note that Eintracht Frankfurt had 24 attempts on goal, 7 of which were on target. On any other night it could have been a draw or a win, but Arsenal took their chances in their stride and were more clinical in their execution which was the main difference.
I’d expect Willock, Saka, Smith Rowe, Maitland Niles and Martinelli to get a run out, with perhaps a back three that includes Mustafi, who Emery tends to favour. Martinez should appear in goal despite liking anti-Emery tweets. Ozil will probably be in contention but may only get his chance in the second half.
Probable Side Against Eintracht Frankfurt :
Martinez; Chambers, Mustafi, Holding, Tierney; Torreira, Willock; Maitland-Niles, Smith Rowe, Nelson; Martinelli