Manchester United Away - Sunday 16:05 @ Brazenhead in Fourways, Leaping Frog Centre

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It’s been something of a debate this season as to what competition we should be targeting. There’s the FA Cup, can we make it three consecutive victories? There’s the Champions League, we’ve never won this and it is a gaping hole in Arsene’s CV. There’s the Premier League. Last won in the 2003/04 season, 12 years ago.

Tuesday’s game seems to have put paid to the CL silverware, although I’m sure there are a few supporters out there that hold some hope of us performing a miracle and why not, we seemed dead and buried in the group stage but pulled through. However, this competition must really be put onto the back burner now as our chances, as indicated by Arsene, are around the 5% range. The Premier League and FA Cup are still both viable goals and ones that we should and will be going for, but as you saw last weekend, the Hull FA Cup match saw a second string side take the field and this is likely to be the case for the replay as Arsene must surely now be putting all his energy into winning the Premier League.

So, in the likely event of us not progressing to the next round of the CL and the unlikely event of us not progressing in the FA Cup, do not shed a tear as it will be a blessing in disguise. To analyse what each team has ahead of them, you will see who has the advantage when it comes to game time and opposition.

Let’s start with game time and Leicester City. They only have one competition to worry about, being the Premier League. They therefore have a fixed number of games left, being 12 over the next 11 weeks.

Manchester City. They are actively involved in the League Cup, FA Cup and Champions League. This means that they will have a minimum of 3 extra games. Their CL away victory on Wednesday almost certainly guarantees another two CL games. They do have the potential (if they reach all finals) to have a maximum 10 extra games. Therefore, they have between 15 and 22 games remaining.

Sp*rs. They only have one other competition to worry about, being the Europa Cup, thus have a minimum of 1 extra game. If they make it to the final they will have 8 extra games. Therefore, they have between 13 and 20 games remaining.

Arsenal. We are in the FA Cup and the Champions League. We know that we have to play Barcelona away and Hull away thus we have a minimum of 2 additional games. If we make the final of each competition, we will have a maximum 10 extra games.

With our squad size, I would be happy that we stay in the FA Cup all the way. This means an additional 4 games, 16 in total over an 11 week period which contains an Interlull around 26th March.

Looking at opposition, the 4 teams still play:

Leicester: So’ton(H), West Ham(H), Man Utd(A), Everton(H), Chelsea(A)

Citeh: Liverpool(A), Man Utd(H), Chelsea(A), So’ton(A)

Sp*rs: West Ham(A), Arsenal(H), Liverpool(A), Man Utd(H), Stoke(A), Chelsea(A), So’ton(H)

Arsenal: Man Utd(A), Sp*rs(A), Everton(A), West Ham(A), Man City(A)

It only gets better for Leicester. Unless they have a complete melt down they should walk this! Citeh seem to have the next easiest run in (although they are 4 points behind us) with Arsenal just pipping Sp*rs with their remaining fixtures even though all of Arsenal’s key matches are away from home.

So, onto the weekend’s match against MFU and I’m writing this before their Europa match against Midtylland. I expect MFU to win and go through. With all the trials and tribulations that their manager has gone through, I really cannot see him failing here. As much as he has been criticised this season for his poor results, he still remains at the helm and the team itself will want to do well. As for the weekend’s game I shall make the brave prediction up front that it can go either way!! Who knows what will happen. We all know what should happen, with MFU’s poor run of results in the premier league to Sunderland, Southampton and Newcastle as of late, Arsenal should really cream them. But there’s this ‘psychological’ aspect of the game that we tend to suffer from and it can hit us at any time. As has been reported, we’re not finding goals easy to come by and we’re averaging just over one and a half goals per game. Four other clubs have scored more goals than us and we’re currently fifth in the form table having taken only 9 points from our last six matches. Our midweek match has taken a lot out of us but I expect MFU to also have similar exertions on Thursday. This hopefully will be an advantage for us with an extra 48 hours’ rest under the belt.

Arsene will put out his strongest team which will be the same as on Tuesday except we are unlikely to have the services of The Ox who left The Emirates that night on crutches. I’d like to see Danny start as Walcott has been largely ineffective this season.

Leicester are at home to Norwich and Sp*rs are at home to Swansea so I do not see the table changing too much this weekend. City play their League Cup final against Liverpool and a win for Liverpool will be their best chance of competing in Europe next season – how the mighty have fallen!!

The Brazenhead patio section has been reserved for the game on Sunday so why don’t y’all c’mon down and have some fun?