Arsenal v West Ham
Barclays Premier League
Kick off: April 15, 2014 7:45 PM BST
The story is becoming all too familiar, Arsenal continue to struggle with injuries and after 120 minutes of action on Saturday the Gunners must somehow find the energy to beat West Ham on Tuesday night. It’s a must win for us after being knocked out of the top four by Everton. The Toffees play their game in hand in midweek too, so a full three points is imperative.
Firstly to the team news, The Ox and Aaron Ramsey are the most worrying with both suffering tight muscles after the FA Cup victory, Lukas Podolski and Nacho Monreal are also carrying knocks. Tomas Rosicky and Laurent Koscielny face late tests to prove their fitness, should they pass fit that’l be a nice boost.
Nicklas Bendnter, Mesut Ozil, Abou Diaby, The Ox, Ramsey and Laurent Koscielny were all pictured training with the first team ahead of the tie at Emirates, however it’s likely just the latter trio will be involved.
Lukasz Fabianski was our hero on Saturday. Saving two penalties superbly and looked solid throughout despite that one bad moment when he misjudged a through-ball. He does deserve another run in the first team however it seems unlikely Wenger will drop Szczesny for a goalkeeper that is set to depart this summer.
- Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote’s bid to takeover Arsenal ‘edging closer’
- [Player ratings] Arsenal 0-1 Man City: Painfully early error inflicts defeat
- [Team news] Arsenal line up vs Man City – Arteta to make five changes
At the back we can almost certainly include Kieran Gibbs who looked refreshed and energized when he came on for the injured Nacho Monreal. Koscielny may well be fit but it seems unlikely he will included right away. That said, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him replace Thomas Vermaelen.
In midfield it seems likely rotation is on the cards. Mathieu Flamini remains suspended meaning Arteta, Ramsey and Kallstrom are our only options in the deeper roles. The Welshman played a huge number of minutes on Saturday after only just returning from injury so he will probably make way for Kallstrom. That’l make it his first start for the club.
Out wide it seems the Ox should be okay to start. He trained yesterday and is really our best option on the right wing. Lukas Podolski also trained but he had an off day against Wigan and should be dropped to the bench allowing Cazorla and Rosicky to take up the final two spots in midfield.
Olivier Giroud will spearhead the frontline especially after sitting out majority of Saturday’s semi final.
Here is our predicted lineup:
Sagna Merts Verm Gibbs
The Ox Cazorla
What are your thoughts and ideas? What is your preferred lineup? Share your thoughts below..