Hi there! The UEFA Champions League returns tonight and according to former Arsenal striker, who is now a leading pundit, Charlie Nicholas, Manchester United and Arsenal will fail to make the knockout stages.
United need to win in Germany if PSV Eindhoven beat CSKA Moscow, while the Gunners must be victorious by any scoreline other than 1-0 or 2-1 at Olympiakos, feats Nicholas fears both Premier League outfits will fail to achieve.
More straight-forward tasks await the other two English sides, with City already through and Chelsea only needing a point when Porto visit Stamford Bridge.
Well United need to win and focus on doing so as I expect PSV will get the three points they need with CSKA already out of contention. The problem is that if you start worrying about all the scenarios it can over-complicate things and distract you.
Wolfsburg are fifth in the Bundesliga and, in Bas Dost and Max Kruse, they have goals in them, particularly at home, which is unlike United. I covered United at the weekend and I actually thought it was the best they’ve played in a while. They had 21 attempts but only one on target and the fans are really starting to get concerned, booing them off after the game.
The real worry for me is, as strong as they’ve been at the back, I’m not sure they have the goals in them when it counts and I think they’re going to go out.
Arsenal can do it, there’s no doubt about that, but I’m not totally convinced that they will because the injury situation is a dramatic one.
For too many years now they’ve needed the big performances and they get them but somehow fall short. I mean, how can you beat Bayern Munich and still be in this situation?
Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain coming back and Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud scoring goals gives me hope. I see Arsenal scoring their two goals but I have a horrible feeling that they’ll get into a good position and then concede and go out.
I really hope that I’m wrong and that this is where Petr Cech, who has been brilliant, pays back his transfer fee and more.
Do you agree with his analysis?