Heading 5-1 into the second leg of the UEFA Champions League Round of 16, it’s hard to think Bayern Munich aren’t in one of the easiest positions possible. Even then Arsenal are a dangerous foe on the field, but when you start adding on their team and organizational disarray, it’s hard to judge how worried Bayern should be.
Walking us through the intense chaos and drama of Arsenal’s months since that 5-1 loss, is Paul De Bruler from The Short Fuse.
Arsenal have played one game (Sutton "Piegate" United doesn't really count. right?) in the last month. Is that going to be a problem?
It may be easier to list the things that aren't a problem at Arsenal currently. All we kept hearing prior to Saturday from the club was that they wanted to get off to a good start after being off the prior week, and they played one of their worst halves in the last couple seasons. So, yes, it will be a problem I think. How much of a problem? I don't know, but let's just say I'm not looking forward to this game as much as I want to be.
Last weekend's lost to Liverpool wasn't Arsenal's finest moment and the drama surrounding Alexis Sanchez isn't doing them any favors. What is going on and where does Arsenal go from here?
What's going on is that we're watching a once solid fortress decaying from within and taking a lot down with it. If reports are to be believed, Alexis is unhappy and is taking out his frustrations on his teammates, Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan-style, and by those same reports, a lot of his teammates don't like criticism. Which, maybe one of those two is acceptable, but both at once is a recipe for disaster. I don't think it'll get to this point in public, but it feels very much like a "he goes or I go" situation from Alexis' standpoint between himself and Wenger, and it's probably going to get worse before it gets better.
This is going to sound kind of indelicate, but given Arsenal are down 5-1 in this tie and the drama of the last week, is there any reason for hope from Arsene Wenger and company?
Short answer: No. Longer answer: Arsenal have a recent history of getting walloped in the first leg and then winning the Moral Victory Cup in the second, so I half expect the Gunners to come out firing on all cylinders on Tuesday on the way to a 3-0 win that will be meaningless in the long term. But in reality, they'll probably lose heavily again.