Arsenal defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos has admitted hopes that the Gunners may have an easier time defending against Liverpool’s style of football next weekend than they did against Burnley’s.
Sokratis was involved in a physical encounter with Sean Dyche’s Burnley side, the Gunners emerging battered and bruised with a 2-1 win, but Burnley’s physical strike duo of Chris Wood and Ashley Barnes were hard to contain.
Sokratis and his Arsenal teammates face the Premier League leaders this coming weekend, the Reds having scored six goals in their opening two matches as they look to go one better than last season’s second placed finish.
Even though the Gunners will be facing one of the most lethal frontlines in the Premier League, the former Dortmund man told the Evening Standard that he and his teammates may find it more comfortable to defend against Liverpool’s less bruising style.
“It is a different game,” he said. “Maybe it is more easy, because you don’t have to fight a lot – but they also play football.
“If they are on a good day and you are having a bad day, it is hard. In the end we know it is difficult and we respect Liverpool a lot. But I think the best [way] is to go and play our style of game. We will see what happens.”
Arsenal lost 5-1 at Anfield last season, but the Greek defender insisted Saturday’s encounter will be different – not least because of the summer arrival of David Luiz at the Emirates.
The Brazilian was signed from Chelsea for £8m on deadline day and made his Gunners debut this weekend. After playing alongside Luiz for the first time, Sokratis said: “When I was in Dortmund I played with Hummels, who has the same style as David. It was also a very good partnership and it is very good [now with Luiz]. It was his first game, it is important that we won and we can go from here.”
Source : 90min