So we meet West Ham tomorrow at the Emirates and if things remain the way they are, West Ham is going to have difficult times. They currently sit at 20th place in the league as their start to the season hasn’t been good, their worst in fact in a long time. Although they will be hoping to get something as they come into this match on the back of a win and that they have beaten us at the Emirates before, being the first away team to beat us at the Emirates.
Still they haven’t won against us in the last six encounters and they have failed to score in five of their last six matches against us. This inability of theirs to score goals is also their biggets let down this season as they have just netted 7 in 9 matches. But these stats will count for nothing as the team who performs will get the result in their favor.
In team news we have no players returning from injury this week. Whereas we have lost Gibbs for at least two to four weeks due to a knee injury. We have got Van Persie and Ramsey to return to training next week and Almunia is out at the most for two weeks. Vermaelen return is yet to be predicted. We are missing Wilshere due to suspension and Diaby is also out.
This is what Wenger said:
“It is difficult to know when it’s a medial knee ligament. Gibbs is one of the players I still do not have integrated in my mind that he is out [of the West Ham game] but he is unfortunately. We have available the players who played at Newcastle and those who were rested after playing at Manchester City. We don’t have any other players coming back. That means Almunia, Van Persie and Vermaelen are still out. Diaby is still out of course. Ramsey is in full training at the end of next week and Van Persie as well. Almunia is more difficult to know – one or two weeks maximum.”
So we have the same squad that travelled to Man City. So the probable starting eleven for tomorrow will be
Starting XI: Fabianski, Sagna, Squillaci, Koscielny, Clichy, Song, Fabregas, Denilson, Walcott, Chamakh, Nasri.
At the back Fabianski is going to return despite Szczesny impressing in the carling cup match. We are going to see the return of Squillaci partnering Koscielny. Koscielny was superb in midweek and Squillaci will be back after having a rest. Djourou needs to improve a lot if he is to be picked ahead of these two. As Gibbs is injured so Clichy is going to be back in his place and the other flank is going to be covered by Sagna.
In midfield Song and Fabregas are going to return to their roles. The third player is where the headache starts and it’s a good because the options are enormous and all are top class. We have Denilson, Diaby, Rosicky and Nasri that can play as a third midfield player. I feel Denilson is going to start because it worked against Man City and it makes the midfield more balanced.
Upfront the headache further increases as Walcott and Bendtner have impressed already after returning from the injuries and Chamakh, Nasri, Arshavin, Rosicky who have been playing in the advance role are also having a good season. I am going with Chamakh as he was rested in midweek along with Nasri on the left. I prefer Walcott to start on the right so that we can harass the West Ham defence from the start by using his pace. May be Arsene will start with Arshavin and Nasri and bring on Walcott as a substitute. Rosicky played the full 90 minutes in midweek so we might also see him on the bench.
A bench of Szczesny, Rosicky, Bendtner, Arshavin, Djourou, Diaby, Eboue, Lansbury.
West Ham are going to let us play and keep the possession. They will keep it tight at the back and hit us on the counter and by using the aerial route. This is what most teams do so they will be using the same strategy.
We would have to be patient and take our chances. An early goal will help to ease the nerves and from there on we can dictate the match.
Looking at the team the three points shouldn’t be a problem but after West Brom you can never be certain. We have to show up with our best performance to get the maximum. I am going with 3 – 0 to Arsenal. We have kept a clean sheet away from home in the last two matches so I expect another clean sheet. Although, I won’t be bothered about it if we win because a goalless draw won’t help us much.
We have to keep the momentum going in our favor.
Keep the faith!