It feels like the high quality displays we saw before the international break were ages ago. In fact, it is often this way, when your form is good, breaks seem to go on and on. Spain wasn’t entirely successful, but it appears as though we got all our lads back from their various national team trips none the worse for wear. The situation this weekend is an interesting one. Our early draws have left us badly in need of points in La Liga, and yet the midweek Champions League match with Young Boys could not be more crucial. We need six points from six in the coming days, and Emery will be as unpredictable as ever I am sure.
Osasuna have never won three consecutive matches in the Valencian community, and yet are just one match away from doing so now. They sit fifth in the table and have both scored and conceded 11 goals in 8 matches. I don’t think they are really worried about keeping a clean sheet, they want to get after their opponents and play up and down the field.
David Garcia, Kike, and Roberto Torres all have multiple goals for Osasuna so far, and eight of their players have started at least 7 of their 8 matches so far in the league. To me, this feels like a side that would be dangerous to rotate against because the unit they put on the field will be well accustomed to one another.
I’ve seen stills of Gerard and Samu in training, and I would very much like to see both take part in this match, if only in a reserve capacity. Paco Alcacer and Raul Albiol have also returned to training with the group, and new man Serge Aurier will be looking for a debut.
Frankly, Emery could do just about anything here. This might well be another match where we start out without a true number 9, as Dia is still injured, and Unai may try to save his offensive strength for the Champions League trying to get by on a clean sheet win here.
If we return to playing the way we did just before the break, we’ll win this match. I think this team is starting to round into shape, so I predict a 2-0 victory.