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Arsenal preview, season start, opening day, great excitement in both camps

DATE: 10.08.2017 - THE CUNNING FOX - NEWSDESK

 

The Cunning Fox has been in both camps to check the temprature in front of the season opener at The Emirates against one of the Premier League favourites, Arsenal

We have some great views from Scandinavian City fans, a New York based Arsenal fan and one from the London suburbs. You can read the comments and thoughts about the Arsenal game and their season thoughts below, but first our own views on the first game of the season.

Leicester manager Craig Shakespeare has nothing to lose in his opening game of the season, and the pre-season has shown sparks of greatness. Teh last game in pre-season v. Borussia MGladbach showd that City at their best are to be counted.

City will be without Robert Huth, Danny Drinkwater and Vicente Iborra who all are out injured. The situation in the Arsenal camp is even worse, not really knowing who can play on the opening day, and it's definate that their best player Alexis Sanches is not playing.
 

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Arsenal are favourites in this game and odds are high that they will finish in the top four. They are not favourites to win the title but likely to end in fourth place, with a thight battle with a number of the top teams.

Leicester is also believed to be a top 10 club, and that is really nice to see. The team looks good, despite seeing the the squad is a bit unbalanced at the moment, but there are a lot of strength in a group 24 to 25 players.

To play Arsenal away will always be difficult, but without Alexis Sanchez they are not that strong. Arsenal will always field a strong team, and from the talk with Gunners fansites
Arsenal Shorts and Le Grove, they are full of confidence for tomorrows game.

TCF Predicition is 1-1 (Mahrez scoring), TCF Line-Up prediction: Schmeichel - Simpson, Maguire, Morgan, Fuchs - Ndidi, James, Mahrez, Albrighton - Iheanacho, Vardy, Previous game between the two, 26.04.2017, 1-0 (Huth og).
 

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Interesting and great views from our fans panel. Arsenal website views from, Arsenal Shorts and Le Grove, also below you will find the views from Scandinavian foxes, Walter, Sören and Frank.
 

Ian - Arsenal Shorts

Pedro - Le Grove

Q & A

Q & A

What is your reason for you supporting Arsenal ? My reason for supporting Arsenal stems from my Uncle, he always supported them. As soon as he took me to my first Arsenal game at Highbury in 1985, I was hooked – it also coincided with me getting glasses for the first time, so that scene in Fever Pitch when he gets to the top of the stairs and sees the pitch rang very true for me, it was like 3D/HD all in one go. After that, I went to as many Arsenal games as I could afford, while still watching my local team Aldershot home and away.

What is the goal this season, in the league and the cups ? The goal this season is to win the league of course, that’s what we all hope for ahead of a new season. The FA Cup is always nice, and we seem to be having a good time in that competition recently so I’d hope to do well again. The League Cup could be a target with our Young Guns, and the Europa League is the unknown for us this season, so if everything clicks and we sort our injury issues out, then who knows! The quadruple is on – actually, 5 trophies if you count the Charity Shield!

What will be your likely line-up ? You can’t call the line-up, as we have so many doubts ahead of the game, same as Leicester by the looks of it. I have read this morning that Ozil and Ramsey have trained, so they could be back, but we’ll definitely be without Sanchez and Kos, not sure about Mustafi yet. Would still hope we’d muster a decent starting XI with Lacazette

How
do you have to play to get a result, and what do you believe the result will be ?
I would hope we can rally, sort of the players who are doubts and begin with a win. We lost last season first game, at home, but hopefully this season, even without Sanchez and Koscielny, I would be hoping for all three points, then beat Stoke away, get everyone fit, then build on that.

Describe your manager with three words, and do you believe he will be the manager at the end of the season ?
Three words for Arsene Wenger? Loyal, Gooner, Legend. Love him or hate him, you have to say he has the club at heart. You can see the pain on his face when we lose, he feels it like we all do. Same as when we win, no one more pleased in the stadium. Despite the bumpy last couple of seasons, you can’t argue that he has moved us along as a club and we’ve been desperately unlucky in the league for a few seasons during his reign.

Who are your best player and why ?
Best player has to be Alexis, when times are tough, he seems to be the only player who works his socks off until the final whistle. He’s the only player who is upset when things aren’t going our way, nothing worse than seeing players laughing and joking after a poor performance. During the 3-3 draw at Bournemouth last year when Giroud is celebrating, he’s on the centre circle wanting players back to we can try and grab a winner. I also really like Rob Holding, it feels like he’s been an Arsenal player for years. He seems to ‘get it’, and has already earned himself legend status are winding Diego Costa in the Cup Final in May, and already has his own song – more than some players ever get!

Who is your worst ?
The worst player, I have a few players in mind, but it won’t do any good telling you who they are, so I’ll leave that one J

Are there any special player in the Leicester team that you are looking out for ?
I do have a soft spot for Leicester, namely because of Steve Claridge and Kasabian! Claridge used to play for my local side Aldershot, so I’ve always followed his progress, he always played with his socks rolled down, huffing and puffing but always seemed to find goals from somewhere. I don’t have any Leicester players I look out for now to be honest. I’m a big Kasabian fan, been to see them loads, so was really pleased when you won the league, bet they were partying for days (like most of your fans I’d imagine!) The fact it was at Spurs’ expense made it even better. Nice to see a decent football team winning it in these days of £200m players on £350k a week, and proper fans celebrating something they’ll never forget.

Who is your favourite all time Leicester / Arsenal player, Frank McLintock, Jeff Blockley, Alan Smith, Paul Dickov or any other with a life in both camps ?
I would say Alan Smith would be my favourite player out of those you mentioned because he was our striker when I started watching Arsenal every week and you knew he would always take his chances once you had got the ball up to him. He was also involved in the1989 Anfield Michael Thomas goal and also scored the first one to get us on our way that night (another Friday!). Frank McLintock is an Arsenal player who helped shape our club back in the 70s. He also played for Leicester, but captained us to our first double – did I mention we won the league at White Hart Lane in 1971 (first time round)?

What is your best memory from a game v. Leicester ?
My best memory would be when we won the league in 2004, beating Leicester in the last game to remain unbeaten for a whole season. I managed to get a ticket and remember it being a proper party! Despite going 1-0 down, this was an amazing day, something very special at Highbury, The Invincibles are something we will probably never see again in the Premier League.

What is your worst ?
I also went to the 3-3 draw at Filbert Street, when Dennis Bergkamp scored all three goals in 1997. I still can’t believe we didn’t win that game so you could say this might be the worst! I didn’t have a ticket, took the afternoon off and drove up on the day on the off-chance of getting a ticket outside. I was about to give up and listen on the radio, when a youth team player in a tracksuit came out and sold me a ticket for £40. I was in the Leicester end chatting to a steward for the whole game, he was telling me some stories about your rivalries with Derby and Forest, even he was amazed at the goals that night, great game too (which we definitely should have won!).

Where do you believe Leicester and Arsenal will finish in the Premier League table ?
I believe Arsenal will finish top (if I didn’t think that, what would be the point?) and I would hope Leicester will win their last game of the season at Wembley against Tottenham, knock Man United and Chelsea out of the CL spots and relegate Spurs in front of their own fans. Too much?

From where are you watching the game on Friday ?
It’s actually my birthday this weekend, so I am not at the game, but I am at my aforementioned Uncles’ place for a weekend of football (and beer), so will watch it in the pub with him, and my Arsenal mad sons. It’s so good the Premier League is kicking off again, today feels like footballing Christmas Eve!

If you don’t support a team, why should you start supporting Arsenal ?
Why should you support Arsenal? You should support Arsenal as we do things the right way, win things (sometimes) and play exciting football. You never know what to expect, but you’ll always get more good than bad!

What is the reason for you supporting Arsenal ? I dabbled with Nottingham Forest as a kid (super young and stupid), then my dad put me straight. Christmas was only possible if my allegiances aligned with his. My mistake was soon rectified, I’ve not looked back since.
 

What is the goal this season, in the league and the cups ? Winning the Premier League should be the only goal. Realistically, an FA Cup win and top 4 would be pretty excellent.
 

What will be your likely line-up ? Cech, Holding Monreal Kolasinac, Xhaka

Chamberlain Elneney Bellerin, Ozil Lacazette Welbz
 

How do you have to play to get a result, and what do you believe the result will be ?

I think we continue to play in our new Chelsea inspired formation. Hopefully we’ll be prepared for the Leicester counter attack. On a good day, Xhaka will find the space to dictate play. He’ll be looking to take advantage of a mobile front three who boast a blend of pace, creativity, and hopefully a clinical edge this season. We should win having the home advantage and more quality through the setup. But this is Arsenal, and we have a habit of being shite on the first day of the season.
 

Describe your manager with three words, and do you believe he will be the manager at the end of the season ? Way past it
 

Who are your best player and why ? Alexis Sanchez. Man monster. Producer and provide. Explosive. Incredible desire to fight. Magic on his day.
 

Who is your worst ? Oh my, I don’t know if Arsenal have a worst player, but I think the penny has dropped for most Arsenal fans with the weaknesses of Mr Coquelin. Headless chicken and weak in possession. A bit of a nightmare for our style of play.
 

Are there any special player in the Leicester team that you are looking out for ?

Arsenal fans would love to see Mahrez in red & white. Questions over his attitude and how he played last year, but no doubt a great talent on his day.
 

Who is your favourite all time Leicester / Arsenal player, Frank McLintock, Jeff Blockley, Alan Smith, Paul Dickov or any other with a life in both camps ? I’m loosely related to Steve Claridge. I tweeted him once to see if we could make up for all the lost Christmases, he didn’t respond. But you know, family ties. Steve, if you're reading, we can still be together.
 

What is your best memory from a game v. Leicester ? Dennis Bergkamp at Filbert Street, what a moment

 

What is your worst ? Difficult to remember one? We did the double over you when you won the league, can’t remember too many terrible moments? I mean, bar you beating us to the league title. That was wonderful for sport, not so great as an Arsenal fan who'd been told for ten year money was the only solution to oligarchs.
 

Where do you believe Leicester and Arsenal will finish in the Premier League table ?

Leicester will finish top half of the table. I think Arsenal will finish 5th.


From where are you watching the game on Friday ? From a bar in New York somewhere at 3pm. Slinking out of work early (Brit abroad).
 

If you don’t support a team, why should you start supporting Arsenal ?

Class. Style. North London is a wonderful place.









































 


Norwegian Walter Olsen, Swede Soren Filipsson and Dane Frank Rask Poulsen. They are fully devoted foxes fans and often giving their supporter views  to national newspapers in our countries, when talking Leicester City. Here are their views for the season and also talking to us about the game v. Arsenal.

 

Walter

Sören

Frank

Q & A

Q & A

Q & A

How do you think the season will be, what league position will we finish in, and why ? I'm always optimistic - and we are better than last year. So we`ll end up with appr. 60 Points - which will give us 8th position at the end of the season. WHY? Better squad all together, with new signings and at the same time no hard CL matches (unfortunately).
 

What do you think of the transfers done, in and out ? We have a stronger team this season. To underline that - these three new signings will lift us from 12th to 8th position: Maguire as defender, Iborra as midfielder and Iheanacho as a new striker.
 

Mahrez, how do you feel about him ? It`s hard to say. If he still wants to leave - let him - we don`t want an unmotivated player! On the other hand, at his best, he`s an important quality player who can turn a match and give us points on his own. 
 

What is your preferred 11 and what system would like City in ? Assuming Mahrez is out, all players are free of injuries, Fuchs can play right hand side and playing 4-4-2: Schmeichel, Fuchs, Huth, Maguire, Chilwell, Drinkwater, Iborra, Ndidi, Albrighton, Vardy, Iheanacho
 

How many points do you think City have after the eight first games, really tough season start ? 11 points
 

Will Craig Shakespeare be the manager at the end of the season ? Yes. 8th place - and he`s safe.
 

What about the FA Cup and League Cup, should City try to lift a cup again ? Of course - who would say no ?
 

Who will be the most difficult away game - Bournemouth is hard to beat away!
 

Who will be City’s player of the year - Albrighton - after a new outstanding season - with superb cross-overs and a lot of assists to Vardy and Iheanacho
 

How many goals will Iheanicho score, how many will Vardy score, and how do you rate this duo compared to other forwards in the Premier League. These two will be among the best PL forwards. Vardy will score 20, Iheanacho 12.
 

Arsenal, what will be the result, and how do we have to play to get a good result ? Tight game, with hard work for the midfielders to stop Gunners from shooting from distance in front of our defenders, or to get opportunity to give passes between them. Close race, but I`m sorry to say, we won`t get any of our 60 points in this match. Hope I`m wrong though!
 

What will the line-up be and what system ? 4-4-2 - With a lot of injuries; Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan, Maguire, Fuchs, Mahrez, James, Ndidi, Albrighton, Vardy, Iheanacho
 

Who are the three Arsenal players to look out for, their key players ? Honestly, I really don`t care about the Arsenal players. I care about our own Squad and want our players to perform well. 
 

Who are our three key players in the game ? For us: Schmeichel - Ndidi - Vardy
 

How many games will you travel to this season ? I will try to visit Leicester twice - at the end of first half of the season and in april/may in the second half, together with the supporters of the Scandinavian Branch.















 

1)     How do you think the season will be, what league position will we finish in, and why ?  Difficult and hard as all seasons are in the Premier League. The start is important, and that would be crucial for the end positiion. Great start, going for a 6th position. Bad start, we should just be happy if we stay up.

What do you think of the transfers done, in and out ?

2)    Harry Maguire and Kelechi Iheanacho are two quality signings. Iborra and James, a bit simular. Goalkeeper cover, one in, one out, maybe Jakupovic is better than Zieler.

Mahrez, how do you feel about him ? Riyad Mahrez is important for Leicester City. He is one that we need to keep, the £ 50 million price tag is ok, that is what he will be worth, no doubt about it.

What is your preferred 11 and what system would like City in ? I like the 4-4-2, it suits the squad at the moment. My team, Schmeichel, Simpson, Morgan, Maguire, Fuchs, James, Drinkwater, Mahrez, Gray,  Iheanacho, Vardy

How many points do you think City have after the eight first games, really tough season start ? Always optimistic, 14 points, four wins, two draws and two defeats

Will Craig Shakespeare be the manager at the end of the season ? Craig Shakespeare has a difficult job, but he will be there when the next season starts.

What about the FA Cup and League Cup, should City try to lift a cup again ? The League Cup, no, FA Cup yes. Would be great with a Wembley trip in the spring.

What will be the most difficult away game ? First game away to Arsenal. Man City and Man Utd always difficult.

Who will be City’s player of the year ? Would like that to be Riyad Mahrez. But if he moves, Jamie Vardy.

How many goals will Iheanicho score, how many will Vardy score, and how do you rate this duo compared to other forwards in the Premier League ? 20 goals each, 40 in total. Ideal partnership.

Arsenal, what will be the result, and how do we have to play to get a good result ? I believe Arsenal will win, but we have to play the counterattack way, nothing else works for us.

What will the line-up be and what system ?
 4-5-1, Schmeichel, Simspon, Morgan, Maguire, Fuchs, Mahrez, James, Ndidi, Albrighton, Okazaki, Vardy

Who are the three Arsenal players to look out for, their key players ?  Xhaka, Eleny and Welbeck

Who are our three key in the game ? Kasper Schmeichel, 1,2,3 times. His presence will be crucial and the key factor for a great City result.

How many games will you travel to this season ? Three games, one before christmas and two after, but don't have everything planned.
























 

How do you think the season will be, what league position will we finish in, and why ? Very exciting, as always. A rollercoaster ride in the three last seasons. I predict a normal season this time. We will get a difficult first half, but believe we can climb fast to a 9th position.
It's possible to even get higher and a dream would be to qualify to Europe next season and hopefully ending 6th could make that possible

.

What do you think of the transfers done, in and out ? I love the Iheanacho signing, believe he will do great for us after being impressive at Man City with little time on the field. Maguire is a good and solid signing. I also have great hope for Iborra, he is a player that given time can be very important for us. Jakupovic a good replacement for Zieler and a solid cover for Schmeichel.
 

Mahrez, how do you feel about him ? I think he will leave before the end of the transfer window. Mahrez is World class and he is not really replaceable. But I believe Gray can do a job and be one for the future if given time to get to his best. Often seen to the left, but he could to wel l to the right also.

 

What is your preferred 11 and what system would like City in ? I would love to see City in 3-5-2, and to see Chilwell more, this is my team, Schmeichel – Huth, Morgan, Maguire – Chilwell, Ndidi, Iborra, Drinkwater, Mahrez (Gray) – Vardy, Iheanacho.
 

How many points do you think City have after the eight first games, really tough season start ?

12 points, 3 wins, 3 draws and 2 defeats.
 

Will Craig Shakespeare be the manager at the end of the season ? Yes, but the first six or eight games will be of great importance. A bad start could put pressure on Shakespeare

 
What about the FA Cup and League Cup, should City try to lift a cup again ? PL is the most important, League Cup, no. If we make a real push for the FA Cup, playing the best team, it could all the way to Wembley, would be fun.

What will be the most difficult away game ? Old Trafford, always difficult

Who will be City’s player of the year ? Difficult but my vote goes to Iheanacho
 

How many goals will Iheanicho score, how many will Vardy score, and how do you rate this duo compared to other forwards in the Premier League ? How many games will they play the two together, he might also use Okazaki and Slimani. Both will score more than 10 goals, believe the duo can be one of the best in the Premier League.
 

Arsenal, what will be the result, and how do we have to play to get a good result ? It's been hard battles in the previous games, and believe it will be like that again, but with a better result. Believe it will end 1-1. We should just wait out Arsenal and when they make mistakes counterattack as we always do.

 

What will the line-up be and what system ? Against Arsenal away, 4-4-2 – We need to start with both Iheanacho and Vardy in the team. We are without Drinky, Huth and Iborra, my line-up would be, Schmeichel – Fuchs, Morgan, Maguire, Simpson – Gray, Ndidi, James, Mahrez – Vardy, Iheanacho.

 

Who are the three Arsenal players to look out for, their key players ? The two new signings Kolasinac and Lacazette. Kolasinac has been impressive for Schalke, he will be great for Arsenal, watching against Chelsea you could see his influence. Lacazette will score goals. I would also like to say that I really like Monreal, very consistent.

 

Who are our three key players in the game ? Schmeichel and Vardy are always important. Mahrez is one that always will be important and his presence and performance is always giving us a good or bad result. Mahrez can be the difference between the teams

 

How many games will you travel to this season ?

Hope to be present at King Power for one game this season.


All of them are also involved in the running of the Scandinavian Branch, helping out with views and talk, producing good stories for the newsletter - the fox,  that is published in several copies every year.

City have a devoted and active fanbase in Sweden, Blue Army Sweden,  running a great website (in Swedish). They are often seen in Leicester with their great t-shirts and friendly faces.

You can watch interviews with Sören and his friend Palle at "city-extra" and don't miss out the latest from "tcfone" and "retrotv". 


check the hot, cool and cold update, enter here, all pre-season stats, enter here,

All the latest about Leicester City on Twitter, enter here


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