I agree on your overall predictions. I can't stress to you how much Eboue at right back instead of Sagna is worrying me. I feel that'll be a matchup they'll look to exploited. We have to succeed in pressuring the ball, while maintaining shape, and hitting very hard and fast on the wings for counters. We can't man-mark Messi because that'll just leave gaps somewhere else for another player to punish us. We have to shrink the pitch whenever possible and we can't afford to change our entire game to fit them because we'll end up playing too defensively. We have a height advantage(roughly 1.7 M of Barca, AA23 is 1.73M lulz) and I hope we are able to capitalize on dead-ball opportunities like we have many times this season.
I think Nasri will start on the bench and will be brought on for either Arshavin/Walcott/Wilshere(depending who looks the worst/tactic change due to scoreline). I could see Bendtner coming in for Arshavin if he's not having an effective game. We'll need to have everyone on that has an eye for goal so I don't see Chamakh fitting in there. He's a great hold-up striker and presents an aerial threat...but shots on target will be key vs. Barca. We must score to have a chance of winning, because it's almost a given that they will create a ton of chances throughout the game. I think with Cesc and RvP in great form right now makes this game the perfect time to play, even with the absence of Sagna and Nasri(most likely) from the starting lineup. I think Song will be key for Arsenal, as he must keep his work rate very high box to box. If he has a great game along with the back 4 defending as they should, we should get a desirable result.
The Hercules coach revealed his notes for the system he used to press Barcelona and it's fairly genius.
He played a 4-1-4-1 with a diamond midfield. The wings would press the ball, while the bottom diamond would press into the wing spot...allowing the DMF to push in the lower diamond position. This allowed Hercules to maintain shape on multiple levels while cutting out through balls that usually are able to break teams down for 3-5 goals a game.
I know we won't do this and we'll probably do a:
With Song holding and Walcott/Arshavin attacking the wings at all times. We'll need the distribution from the midfield because if Barca do manage to turn it over from our pressure, it'll be there.
@Nick...The man down + JD injury + 2 soft penalties didn't help with the Newcastle game. Squillaci should be investigated for impersonating a professional football player. In all fairness, we should have been up 6-0 at half but Walcott doesn't finish chances with conviction at all times(especially being 4-0 up).