If Arsenal are going to beat Bayern Munich in the Champions League they will need a lot of skill, plenty of quality and a little bit of luck in terms of players who may not be available for the European champions.
One player who looks set to return to the Bayern side shortly before the tie against Arsenal is Arjen Robben, widely accepted as one of the best wingers in European and global football.
Robben is currently sitting in the treatment room following a knee injury he picked up following a challenge from Marwin Hitz as Bayern defeated Augsburg in the DFB Pokal earlier this month.
The challenge was so bad that it left Robben with not just a badly cut knee but also ligament damage, which created initial worries that he could have been out of action for a significant period of time.
However, news following the injury showed that the Dutchman should be back in training before the end of January, allowing him to build his fitness back up ahead of the Arsenal tie and that’s terrible news for the Gunners.
Robben already has nine goals across the Bundesliga and Champions League this season and when he’s fit and in form, he controls that right hand wing better than anyone else in the game.
His likely return date is the opening Bundesliga match of February when Bayern Munich host Frankfurt on February 1.
He’ll then have matches against Nuremburg and Freiburg to sharpen his fitness before the Bayern Munich squad flies to London for the first leg against Arsenal on February 19.
However, the overriding point is that Arsenal are certainly good enough not to have to rely on injuries to key opposition players, but in this case no Gunner can argue that an absent Robben would undoubtedly help Arsene Wenger’s men.
image: © Lorenzo Blangiardi