This may seem one of those games that we could take our eye from and still get the points.
We are The Arsenal though. We know there are no gimmies.
Let us look at the facts.
Huddersfield lie in 11th spot. Their last game was a heartbreaking late loss to runaway leaders Manchester City, where the Terriers can feel aggrieved not to have picked up a point at the least.
David Wagner’s team have already beaten Man United this season, and are looking like they more than deserve their place in the top flight.
Aaron Mooy is the fourth most successful crosser in the entire league this season, and the third most successful tackler. They have a disciplined attack, perhaps lacking a few goals of course, but they pose a threat. It is their defence that will be the tough part of the game, and we will need every bit of nous we can muster.
We cannot afford to shift concentration toward the weekend and our crunch game against Jose Mourinho and Manchester United.
Huddersfield deserve more than that.
We will probably rotate our team to a degree though. We do have a squad that can allow a few changes without impacting too much on our strength.
Mesut Ozil will most likely miss a second consecutive game with illness. Our attack could well be heavily changed with the depth we have. Olivier Giroud and Danny Welbeck are players who can jump into the side without losing any attacking power. Theo
Walcott should be back after illness, but a spot on the bench should beckon rather than an instant return to the side.
Our midfield could also see a few changes. Granit Xhaka and Aaron Ramsey have been in great form of late, so a drop to the bench could disrupt our rhythm. Three games in a week however may be too much for them to be at optimum levels for the United game. This paves the way open for a combo from Francis Coquelin, Mohamed Elneny and Jack Wilshere. Although Jack has primarily been used as an attacker, his natural role will be in the centre. This could be his chance to shine.
Laurent Koscielny has intermittent tendonitis issues, so a rest for the Frenchman makes good sense. Per Mertesacker, Calum Chambers and Rob Holding are vying for his spot in this game.
We toughed it out against Burnley, and we may have to do the same again. Huddersfield will clam up the midfield and look to utilise set plays a little more, as they lack the attacking players Burnley have. They don’t have any less grit and ambition though.
They know they can get a result at The Emirates.
We need to knock the confidence they have out of them early on. An early goal could prove the difference. The later we leave it, the more buoyed they become, and the higher the panic rises in the stands.
The players that come in must perform higher than they have done in the last couple of Europa League games. If we are to continue our assault on the top 4 and keep our spot there, we need three points.
Lastly, we need the confidence for the United game. Our team normally feed from it, and we have to be at our best to beat Jose’s United, who will be as stubborn as ever.
Predicted Lineup – Cech, Mustafi, Mertesacker, Monreal, Bellerin, Coquelin, Wilshere, Kolasinac, Welbeck, Iwobi, Giroud.
Predicted Scoreline – 3-1 to The Arsenal.