Arsenal face Ludogorets Razgard on Tuesday night for the second time in two weeks, as their quest to seal top spot in Group A continues.
The Gunners destroyed Ludogorets last time out, as the Bulgarian champions were swatted aside at the Emirates a fortnight ago, with Mesut Ozil netting the first hat-trick of his professional career in a 6-0 win.
Arsenal are currently on a 14 match unbeaten run in all competitions, and they will not be worried about that run coming to an end against a team that struggled to really cope with the gulf in quality.
Arsene Wenger’s side are joint top with Paris Saint-Germain in Group A, with seven points from their opening three games.
Team News and Tactics
Lucas Perez remains a long-term absentee for the Gunners after his injury against Reading during last week’s EFL cup tie. Per Mertesacker and Danny Welbeck are both long-term casualties for the Londoners, while Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla remain sidelined and will be unlikely to feature, especially given this weekend’s North London Derby. Arsene Wenger will certainly be looking to rest key players in order to both ensure there are no more additions to the injury table, and also to ensure that all his players are well rested before the crunch game against Tottenham Hostpur.
Arsenal will hence likely name a different line-up to the one that faced Sunderland and came away victorious on Saturday. Expect Wenger’s men to put Ludogorets to the sword again, with the players he introduces looking to impress. Arsenal will stick to their fluid, free-flowing football and won’t really change their game plan from last time.
Probable Line-Up (4-3-3): Ospina, Jenkinson, Mustafi, Koscielny, Gibbs, Elneny, Xhaka, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Iwobi, Giroud
Ludogorets will be hoping for a less embarassing defeat this time around, and will likely name the same line-up as they are not facing any fresh injury concerns.
The Bulgarian side, to their credit, tried to attack Arsenal with some quick passing last time around, but could not make any real impact on the game.
They will set out with a similar game-plan, as this time they have the home advantage.
- Arsenal are unbeaten in their last 14 matches in all competitions.
- Ludogorets have lost just thrice in their last 18 matches in all competitions. Two of those defeats came against Arsenal and PSG in the Champions League.
- Both teams have been in impressive scoring form. Arsenal have scored 16 in their last 6 matches, Ludogorets have scored 15 in their last five.
- Arsenal have won four away games on the spin, scoring 13 goals in the process
- Ludogorets have kept one clean sheet in 12 across all competitions
- Alexis Sanchez has scored six in six on the road this season
Player to watch: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Prediction : Ludogorets 0-3 Arsenal
Expect the Gunners to walk away with an easy victory during this tie, as their current run of form coupled with their performance against Ludogorets in the reverse fixture has left no one in doubt that Wenger’s men will face an difficulties tomorrow night. Ludogorets will look to attack, but with the defensive partnership of Koscielny and Mustafi looking stronger with every game and David Ospina impressing whenever he has started for the Gunners, it is unlikely they will be able to find a breakthrough.