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Burnley vs. Arsenal

Turf Moor

06/0108

14:00GMT

Burnley V Arsenal Preview

The talk on some of the bigger Arsenal blogs and indeed on the lips of Arsene Wenger himself, has been of respect going into this tricky FA Cup tie.

On paper, it's a no brainer. Arsenal should walk in in Turf Moor, smash Burnley and drive home to get ready to face Tottenham. But football isn't won on paper, and it isn't based on theory.

So Arsenal can expect to find a tough physical challenge when they kick off at 2:00PM on Sunday. Fear not, readers, I'm not saying that Arsenal will go there and get beat.

Burnley are in the middle of a crisis on the field. They are without a win since December 8th, when they beat Wolves away from home in a thrilling 3-2 win. Astonishingly, you have to go all the way back to October to find Burnley's last home win. That was a 2-1 win over Norwich, when they were 2-0 up after 5 minutes, and spent the majority of the game under pressure.

Arsenal, however, have won all but one of their home games this season. Manchester United claimed a point in a 2-2 draw. Chelsea and Tottenham are just two of the most recent teams to fall short at The Grove. However, what we need to look at more is Arsenal's away form.

The Gunners have won 2 of their last 3 away games. A 10 man, second string Arsenal team saw off Blackburn's first team 3-2 in the Carling Cup. A 0-0 draw at Portsmouth followed before The Arsenal smashed Everton 4-1. Ok, 4-1 was harsh, but it sounds good.

Arsene Wenger will field Kolo Toure and Manu Eboue for the last time for around 2 months. The two jet off for the ACN tomorrow, with the tournament lasting 6 weeks, but Arsene will give them both time off to recover when they return.

Vital Quotes:

Burnley manager Owen Coyle believes that there could be no better game for Burnley to bounce back from a dissapointing period than a game against Arsenal: 'It's important we bounce back and bounce back quickly,' Coyle told Burnley's official website.

'Whether the 11th game in five weeks at Blackpool was one game too many I don't really know.

'I think the players knew, individually and collectively that we had let everyone down, and that's not a particularly nice feeling.

'But chances to bounce back don't really come any better than Arsenal in the cup.

'We've now got the opportunity to give them something to shout about against a team that are arguably the best in Europe.

'That would be a great tonic for everybody. They don't come any tougher, but it's live to the nation and we want to go and show that we are a good team with good players that can hurt Arsenal if they play to their maximum.

'Equally, they have a few who can cause us problems, so we need to make sure we're totally concentrated and look to give of our best.'


As I said before, Respect is a word Arsene Wenger used in his pre-match press confrence. The Arsenal manager always respects his opponesnts, and he certainly respects the FA Cup. This is what the Arsenal manager had to say about the match: 'We have to respect Burnley,.

'The side we take up will have to play at their best because if you give them a chance they certainly have enough quality to take it.

'They have Ade Akinbiyi, David Unsworth, Jon Harley and Graham Alexander. That’s many good Premier League players with experience.'

'It's not in conflict too much with the Premier League but more the Champions League.

'That’s because of the number of replays positioned every time just in front of the Champions League games.

'But we want to do well in the competition and we have a common desire to do well in every single competition we play in.

In fact, if you look at it, in the last 10 years nobody outside the top four has won this competition. And we are highly motivated to win it again.

'So please, don't expect us to sacrifice the FA Cup.”

Burnley Team News:

New loan signing Stanislav Varga could get his first start after joining from relegation troubled Sunderland. The 35 year old has had little plart to play under Roy Keane, and looks set to finish his career away from Sunderland.

FA Cup winner David Unsworth will be missing for the home side.

Former Gooner John Spicer returns after serving a ban, along with Joey Gudjohnson.

However, Alan Mahon and Clarke Carlisle are both likely to miss out through injury.

Player to watch: Andy Gray

The 31-year-old, 6'1' striker has netted 13 goals in the first half of the season. He's a very physical presence up front. I'll find it interesting to see how Toure and Gallas deal with him.

Arsenal Team News:

Adebayor is rested/injured, while Clichy, Fabregas and Hleb will all be given the weekend off after a tough Festive schedule.

Goalkeeper Jens Lehmann could be playing his last game for Arsenal when he starts between the sticks. If it does turn out to be his last match, I'd like to thank jens for all his outstnading performances in an Arsenal shirt, and all the great memories we've enjoyed during his time here.

Back to the match... Bendtner returns for Arsenal after serving a one-match ban. He's almost certin to start alongside Eduardo, who has impressed in recent weeks.

There is still a doubt over the fitness of Theo Walcott. Arsene Wenger will want the Englishman fit with Eboue away for 2 months, so he might not be risked.

Player to watch: Jens Lehmann

With this possibly his last game, he'll want to go out with a bang. Hopefully, that bang wont come from a shotgun he's hidden in his shorts.

He's been a loyal servant for Arsenal, and will be as professional as ever.

Match Prediction:

I'm going for a comfortable Arsenal win. Burnley will give 110% for as long as they can, but Arsenal's supreme fitness will be telling. 5-0 to The Arsenal. Bendtner (2), Eduardo (2) and Denilson.




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The Journalist

Writer: Nick Simmonett  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Saturday January 5 2008

Time: 10:21PM

Your Comments

Burnley are surely going to force a replay now that Simmo has predicted a 5-0 win for us..
luckys_10
It's a nothing to lose game for Burnley which is what makes teams like this a potential banana skin for any club. But I think we should be able to enjoy ourselves if they haven't set up just to defend. They don't score too many at home and their defensive record isn't great either but 5-0 might be a little ambitious.
Amos.
gallas won't play, right?
G4L
I think both Billy and Clichy get to put their feet up for the weekend G4L
nikolaijns
i was confused coz simmo mentioned toure and gallas dealing with andy gray. I hope they do deal with his king-of-pundits namesake one day. u know the lock, stock and 2 smokin' barrels way.
G4L
Well this should be a comfortable win, 4-0 i think.
AB_Arsenal
Maybe Lehmann's last game will be next week since Dortmund can't deal with his wage demands.
stukazufuss
Sorry chaps, my bad, Gallas WONT play. Just in the habbit of typing both their names.
simmy8_2000
LOL simmo...stukazufuss, what do you mean by next week? If its CC, our GK for that competition is Fabianksi...If Eduardo starts, he will get a hat-trick ;)
CoastarianGooner
hope you guys have a big win tonight so that you lot are overconfident before playing us..and we might just be able to come away with a draw..and beat you at our home..
Spurs_fan_from_india
Spurs fan from India?????? I thought their existence was a myth!
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
no diarra in first 11. to be sold?
G4L
Exactly what I was thinking G4L. I think he's off or he suffered a very late injury. I was certainly surprised and I think it's time to say good bye to Lassy D
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
I don't think so G4L, probably being rested for the CC game, Wenger said something about resting the players that would play on Tuesday.
AB_Arsenal
Eduardo is just CLASS!!!
Gooner_Vin
dudu is $hit hot
fran merida
Eduardooooooooooooooooooooo!!! 2 more goals for him..LOL!
CoastarianGooner
Burnley have really raised their game today..hope they match up with us for full 90 mins or they will suffer!
CoastarianGooner
Well they have matched us for 45 minutes so far so they have been playing quite well, lets hope we can finish them off quickly in the second half.
AB_Arsenal
They are really giving to us....we really need that second goal.
AB_Arsenal
About time, finally i can relax :)
AB_Arsenal
How was the goal AB? My net is too slow to stream :(
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
Bendtner...sorry for the late reply.
AB_Arsenal
arsenal kept possession, bendtner a darting run through the middle, eduardo with a bergkampesque type of a pass, bendtner rounding the gk for a cool finish.
G4L
Argh! I can't believe I'm missing this! The first weekend match missing this season!
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
how come u missed it thiswouldyoubeliveit ? match was telecast in India....
HENRY`14
Well we won but it was hardly the convincing win most of us thought we would get.
AB_Arsenal
We got outplayed by the mighty Burnley today. If we play like that on Weds the Spuds will surely lose.
gunnerkid107
Surely win*
gunnerkid107
HENRY`14- The family wanted to watch something else! gunnerkid107-I'm sure we wont lose against them because firstly, Burnely are a better team and secondly, we probably just underestimated them today. i'm pretty sure Arsene will have a talk about the performance of he feels they didn't give it their all.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
I hope so WYBI
gunnerkid107
We were complacent and people like Diaby grossly underestimated Burnley. I was never in doubt about the result. I was happy with them having the ball, they tired themselves out. They worked too hard in the first half. We never got out of first gear. Good game to watch though but a win was always going to be asking too much from them.
Keplaz
We will raise our game against Spuds. Hopefully they won't be making another DVD any time soon.
Keplaz
Hahaha good one Keplaz, they sure do love their DVD's.
AB_Arsenal
Speaking of Spurs, Zizou's always a great legend. And now this, we should all really love him! http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/sport/football.html?in_article_id=506264&in_page_id=1779&in_page_id=1779&expand=true#StartComments
Louisa
I LOVE ZIZOU !!!!!!!!
HENRY`14
LOl @ Zizou, he's obviously close to Terry Henry and Tel has told em what scum they are, so he gave em the classic ultimate diss oooo are yaaaa????
nikolaijns
i HOPE you were just saving yourself for the lague based on that performance!
pompeycarpet
Come on gooners, we played easy today bearing in mind we have a cup game with Spuds on Wednesday. Cheers!
CoastarianGooner
will be interesting mid-week against the spuds as the CC squad is the same one as played in the FA Cup today. I think Arsene will play the same team for that game, thus giving the 1st team a mini mid-season break - coming back at the weekend. The 2nd XI have alot of games coming up now - the FA Cup 4th round, the two CC games against the Spuds and hopefully the CC Final as well. January/Feb will be a busy time of the year for them - it's good though, as both the 1st and 2nd XI's will stay fresh - no one team could play all those games without getting injuries/league form suffering. No other side has the strength in depth we have, no other team can put out a second XI which would have a decent chance of finishing 5th or 6th in the PL.
michael105uk
to finish that, I think unless we come up against Utd's 1st team, we should keep playing the second XI against anyone else. Give them the experience. Keep Cesc & Co for the Premiership and CL.
michael105uk
btw when is the draw for the next round?
luckys_10
michael105uk - He mite even pick slightly more inexperienced players on Wednesday.. I'm not sure.. maybe Mark Randall mite be given a start, perhaps Johan Djourou.. I'm fairly certain that Gallas would start. He could actually start a bit of mixing and matching.. combining a bit of the 1st and reserve teams..
arsenalrulz4ever
Burnley played well and were unlucky,the red was harsh but heyho it's Arsenal.;-)
MFC67
ive seen worse reds - namely the one ipswich got - but heyo, thats pompey! i wish we had a second team like yours - but sadley we wont, as they would never be content playing for us in just the cups - but wouldnt it be great?!
pompeycarpet
I'm pretty certain Gallas will not start arsenalrulz4ever. It'll be Djourou and Senderos.
WouldYouBelieveIt?!
 

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