Why, despite Pep’s love of width, the key to beating Man City may lie Centrally

In the coming days a lot will be written about how Arsenal should approach the Caribou Cup Final against Manchester City. Despite their recent loss to Wigan, they are still the most in-form team in England and arguably the best team in the world. I’d predict that the consensus for Arsenal’s strategies to be successful according to others are as follows:

Dealing with the Manchester City press and general ball security
Playing direct while limiting slow build-up play
Defending as a team while maintaining an off the ball shape
Limiting De Bruyne and Silva finding space between the lines
Neutralize the threat posed by City wingers (e.g. Sane, Sterling, B. Silva)

We all know about City’s relentless and unwavering commitment to width. This is no secret. Pep wants his wingers to stay wide in order to stretch defenses and open up area centrally. Take for exa...
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