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Arsenal vs. Burnley

Ashburton Grove



Preview: Arsenal v. Burnley

After an emotional victory last weekend at the Britannia, Arsenal enter the final 10 matches of the league season riding high on a wave of momentum. The Gunners entertain Burnley for our second home 3 o'clock Saturday kickoff in a row! I can't believe football actually used to be played at this time every weekend.

Normally after International breaks, I worry that the team won't be organized and motivated to face lower league opposition, but I don't reckon that will be a problem this weekend. There is a nineteen year old boy laying in a hospital bed with his right leg in a plastered cast that will make sure this team is ready to go.

Vital Quotes:

Here is King Emmanuel Eboue on that very subject.

'After the [Stoke] game we didn't see Aaron because he went straight to the hospital,' the King told 'I am so, so disappointed about what happened. Sometimes in football these things happen but we want to play always for him.

'Burnley is a very difficult game for us, we know that. But we will try our best to win it for Aaron Ramsey.

'The result against Stoke was good for us and we will try our best to give everything on the pitch when we play.'

Arsenal Team News:

Arsene will be forced into making three changes. Besides the obvious absence of Aaron, Sol Campbell and Alex Song will also be missing from the team that started against Stoke a week ago. With Gallas still not completely fit and Djourou being another couple of months away from returning, Mikael Silvestre will slot in alongside Thomas Vermaelen. Wenger rated Diaby as 50/50, but Abou won't be risked with Tuesday encounter with Porto looming on the horizon. Thankfully Denilson and Arshavin will available for selection.

Predicted Starting XI: Almunia, Sagna, Silvestre, Vermaelen, Clichy, Denilson, Rosicky, Fabregas, Eboue, Nasri, Bendtner

Player to watch: Nicklas Bendtner

With three in his last three for club and country, could Bendtner be hitting title winning form? I realise that is an exaggeration, but the big man has played pretty well since his return from over three months out. He could be just what we need to push us over the top.

Burnley Team News:

Burnley have already been talking about roughing us up a little. I understand a team like Burnley can't expect to come to the Grove and match our football stride for stride, but considering recent events, do you honestly have to speak about this to the press? Ricardo Fuller said the same thing before Saturday's match.

Brian Laws will hope to have Graham Alexander and Steven Fletcher available for the trip to North London. The Scottish duo have a calf pull and broken hand, respectively.

Steven Caldwell and Chris McCann are will definitely miss the match.

Possible Starting XI:Jensen, Mears, Carlisle, Cort, Fox, Bikey, Elliott, Alexander, Blake, Fletcher, Paterson.

Player to watch: Wade Elliot

Burnley's most regular midfielder this season had an excellent match back at Turf Moor in December. Once Fabregas limped off, he and Alexander ran the show in the midfield.

Match Facts & Stats

Burnley lost in their only previous visit to the Grove 3-0 in the FA Cup fifth round on 8 March 2009

Cesc Fabregas needs only one goal to equal the club record tally scored by a midfielder in a Premier League season: Robert Pires scored 14 goals in three consecutive seasons (2002-03, 2003-04 and 2004-05)

Having lost their last 8 away league games, Burnley has the worst away form in the all the English leagues, earning just one point from 14 matches. The Clarets have conceded two or more goals in all bar one of those games.

Also, Burnley have the worst defensive record in the top flight, conceding 55 goals.

Ref Watch:

Alan Wiley will be the head official for this match.

Match Prediction:

I'm going to go with a 4-0 win for the home side, which will see Arsenal temporary go top of the table thanks to goals scored.

Next Fixtures:

9/3 (Tue) - FC Porto (h) - Champions League

13/3 (Sat) - Hull City (a) - Premier League

20/3 (Sat) - West Ham (h) - Premier League

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The Journalist

Writer: Brice Coffer Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday March 5 2010

Time: 5:04AM

Your Comments

So looking forward to going to this game, the atmosphere will be buzzing, if nothing else Aaron injury as brought all the fans together.We Fans have a job to do on Saturday, we have to be the 12th "Man" for this game and the rest of this Season! Come on The Arsenal!!!
So looking forward to going to this game, the atmosphere will be buzzing, if nothing else Aaron injury as brought all the fans together.We Fans have a job to do on Saturday, we have to be the 12th "Man" for this game and the rest of this Season! Come on The Arsenal!!!
How do our players manage to get hurt when they're not even playing? Seems like that's happened a few times this season, Sol being the latest... though it doesn't seem Arsene wants to play him for two games in quick succession anyway, so he could just want him ready for Porto. Also, is King a lofty enough title for Eboue?
TPowell Burnley spouting ***** before the game. This is exactly the reason why more legs will be broken.
Emperor Emmanuel Eboue.
Give Eboue a new contract!! I just hope the ref is willing to learn from last weekends mistakes and produce a card early. Surely he must see these quotes from the Burnley players and commit to giving out a card to one of them in the first 5 minutes, no matter how soft or hard the challenge looks. It'll make them think twice. The last time we played Burnley they were so hard on Cesc that we lost him for 3 weeks. This cannot happen again!
win and many goals as possible that what they players should be thinking right now!
Gooner SA
Oh no another physical team. Are this lot out to get you to?
I'd happily settle for four 1-0 win's in a row right now.
Sajit - and that is also the reason they're going to get spanked off the park tomorrow. 6-0
We must not take clarets as forgranted win ! Almunia Eboue-Silvestre (Campbell, only if 100% fit)-Vermaelen-Clichy Fabregas-Eastmond-Merida (Diaby, if fit) Walcott-Bendtner-Nasri (Arshavin, if fit) Subs: Fabianski, Traore, Campbell/Silvestre, Vela, Rosicky, Sagna, Denilson we must win & we will win. With the exact of 4 goals margin we will be at the top of the league. even if it's gonna be for hours only, its very important & a big pshycological edge. This game & any game until the end of the season is for you Aaron!!! We love & support you, be strong & recover well.
bade the gooner
I updated the Match Facts & Stats. Interesting one about Cesc Fabregas.
What a bunch of scumbags Burnley players and manager are to say c-r-a-p like that NOW of all times! Geezus h krist, wtf is the matter with them? Even if they think that way, just STFU and show you have some idea of the concept of grace and intelligence! It's amazing how these people put hating/trashing Arsenal ahead of any semblance of respect and consideration toward Ramsey. Scum like Lou Macari are more upset about AW daring to express his feelings about the tackle than Ramsey's leg being shattered and his season ended. // Anyway, IS IT TOO MUCH TO ASK THAT DENILSON SHOW WHY WENGER BELIEVES IN HIM ON SATURDAY??? He'd been dropped in favor of Ramsey, now AW is forced to rely on him as a starter. It's about time Denilson step up this season, his attitude and mentality on the pitch have been appalling (and I say that as a Denilson supporter). Looking forward to seeing Bendtner continue his fine form, really hoping he can impress in these last weeks of the season.
to be fair jaelle, Wenger said this week that Denilson was injured for the stoke game, presumably a minor one from training
TP, I know, but I'm talking about his recent displays on the pitch, v. Porto and before that. It's like he's completely lost his focus and understanding of wtf he's supposed to be doing. I know he's not the only one who's done poorly recently, Nasri has hardly impressed either.
I think 'Player to Watch' for Burnley should've been Chris Eagles. I watched Burnley play against Man Utd and Chelsea and the only player that was really troubling the opponents defense was this guy. He's got a great touch on the ball and can really run at players. He definately needs to be watched closeley if he starts, he gets in great posistions and can really handle himself.
Elliott has been off-form for ages, in fact most of the team has. On loan midfielder,Jack Cork from Chelsea is about the best we have at the moment if Laws can be bothered to play him. A number can turn it on depending on what mood they are in eg Eagles,Fletcher and Mears but the Coyle thing seems to have taken the stuffing out of us and this is totally the wrong time to be playing you at the Emirates. If we can capture the form we had against you at Turf Moor, then fair enough but we are a million miles away from that at the moment. By the way tarring all Clarets players as scumbags based on the comments of one player seems a tadge harsh
"tarring all Clarets players as scumbags based on the comments of one player seems a tadge harsh" - fair enuf, turf, I'll retract it. I'm just way too sensitive right now.
Here's an excellent piece from VA's old friend Goonerholic:

Who would of thought before the season started that this game would be one of the best of the of the season?
Indeed, Denilson has been poor of late; I put it down to injuries & confidence, him not getting a look in by the Brazil National team Coach (even if as a squad player, when they play at the Emirates) in a World cup year and all that. Those things play on your mind and affect output, I think. The game tomorrow offers him another opportunity to show us something; especially as it is a game that would mean so much to the team and supporters. What a turn around it will be for our season to get all 3 points and go top!
you lads are being given harsh treatment and i agree with what wenger says and its about time something should be done wit these horror tackles.
Aaron's statement, thanking everyone he had to thank, as dignified and positive as it gets from someone who's suffering what he's suffering at his age:
Lou, I loved the kid's attitude. Nothing less expected from him.
Almunia, Eboue, Vermaelen, Silvestre, Clichy, Denilson, Nasri, Fabregas, Rosicky, Walcott, Bendtner. Arsh, Eduardo, Diaby and Sagna on the bench
theo is in the mood...
Two bad calls lineo
how we haven't scored by now is beyond me
Hey guys. I'm out and about. What's going on and how are they doing?
wow, what a goal.... cesc and nasri
julie, we're dominating but somehow only have 1 goal
Heh, heh! That isn't the first time I've posted a query just before we score!! Keep going boys! Cesc-who else! ;-)
Cesc off :( ugh
great, cesc is hurt, what the ***** is going to go our way this season
Didnt he score then go off in the Burnley away game?
not good with cesc off :-(
eerily similar to the game at turf moor this year, we dominate, cesc scores, cesc goes off.... last time we capitulated, what will happen this time?
This time, we have enough on the bench to trouble them and snatch the win we deserve. Arshavin should come in sometime in the 2nd half along with Edu. I think we need to to rack up the goals in this game. Bendtner just misses a sitter from Theo's tantalizing cross. Unbelievable!!
awww nikky B
....Bendtner misses another sitter; again from Theo's hard work. What does he need to score? The ball played bang along the goal line for him?
this is pure bull*****
Now 1-1, Nugent. Hope we don't rue those misses. What an unlikely score line.
Get into gear Arsenal,should be easy
...He misses again, this one more forgiveable. Bendtner has to calm down, pleeeaaase!
unforgivable if we don't win this on huge money and cant convert simplest of chances
im sick and tired of defending walcott, I know his performance still wont be enough to convince them but it will certainly make them STFU
AA on for TR, not a bad game for Rosicky, come on boys!!!!!!!
bendtner could have had three hattricks and walcott three assists for bendtner
unfortunately we have to stick with Bendtner now... credit to Wenger for leaving him on, he has to see this one out, Bendtner needs to have confidence to be effective the rest of this season
It's strange how Bendtner is suddenly so wasteful again after he was just seeming to find confidence. It's a worrying sign about his mentality - one miss just seems to make him stop backing himself every other time he gets into a goal-scoring position.
bendtner left the field as if he scored an hattrick... as if all this was some fun play at the park... wish he had shown some remorse..
I don't know AR, he seems to shrug off his misses... he's just having a bad game is all. Considering he's scored in his last 3 games prior to today, he still has to be considered our first choice to lead the line
Not your day Bendtner.Better luck next time
if barnsley scores, i hope bendtner has the decency to apologise for his glaring horrors... with this attitude we can kiss the league goodbye.. jeez
arseneknows and TPowell, I personally think that "he seems to shrug off his misses" and doesn't show any "remorse" is because he's just so used to having these bad games. That may seem like a good thing, but I just get the impression that as soon as he misses one he just sort of accepts it won't be his day. I agree he should still be our main striker until the end of the season (asuming RvP won't be ready, which I doubt he will). I'm a big Bendtner fan, I'm just a bit concerned for him.
WTF is going on????
To be honest, I reckon it's better that we don't go top today. People always talk about the 'phychological advantage' it gives, but to be honest I think we're better as underdogs. Being top will just encourage Man U and Chavs to be more ruthless and our opposing teams to go at us full-throttle.
We havent won yet AR.Gonna be a nervy end to the game
used to having bad games? he's scored in his last 3. not sure what else you want from a striker
nothing but a win will do otherwise forget the title
this is one hell of a nervy ending
What's the score?!!!! Aaarrgghhh!!
jesus.... 4 min added time
2-1 to the good guys, into stoppage time now
it is 2-1 in arsenal's favor.. and we missed some sitters (to put it mildly)
4 mins added and i need a wee oh no
Please just WIN. I'll worry about GD another day. C'mon Arsenal!! And what happened to Fab 4??
Exactly TPowell, he was on great form - and played decently today when he wasn't shooting. But as soon as he misses one opportunity, his head goes down, and he seems to remember the past games he's missed such opportunities, and just accepts that it's going to be a bad day for him. What you say is what frustrates me so much - he was playing well, and I'd just wish he would just back himself consistently when he gets these chances, because he IS good enough to put them away, and, what's more, he's shown he is.
i love you arshavinnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn
AA with the clincher!!
He's 5ft fooooouuuurrrr 5 foot foooooooouuuuuurrrrr
Well that was an entertaining match!!!
Fair enough AR, but I think a lad of his age is allowed to have a bad game from time to time... and like you said, it wasn't a completely bad game from him, just a couple laughable misses, he also had a couple of good shots saved by Jensen, and you have to give him credit for at least getting into scoring positions, which is more than can be said for many of our players...
This guys are going to kill me one of these days, could we have made it harder on ourselves! Jeez, ffs!
Important 3 points. Game on for the title!!
MOTM --- Theo anyone?
Im happy. We got 3 points yet we are not on top. The pressure would have been tremendous had we gone on top. Let us just lie low for some more time. Quietly getting 3 points.
Also, it has to be said Nasri did a good job in the 'cesc role' today. I'm trying not to worry about the injury.... :-(
btw, Jack scored his first premiership goal. So thats nice.
Yep I agree with everything there TPowell, including Theo. I admit I'm a doubter, but today was one of his best performances. It was especially good to see him getting HIMSELF involved, not just relying on the likes of Cesc playing him in every time. Even his crossing was good today!
apparently Jack scored for the orcs, good day all around
Yeh, Jack scored, JET scored twice and got an assist and Jay Simpson scored. Not a bad day!
3 points in the bag. I agree that it will be better that we sneak into top position rather than be obvious (whatever that means) so as to prevent the psycological stress that may come with the run-in, for now. Bendtner is a strong character to miss so many goals and still leave the pitch with the crowd showing support; that's cos he misses and goes right back for another chance. Any one with a weaker mental strength will capitulate, with so many misses. He will come good. Fancy costing Theo so many assist stats. Lol!
easy 3 points toady by the looks of things lads ? the league title is in your hands now.
Thought nasri was awesome today, I lost count the number of times he turned the opposition player. Theo also had a very good game and played like he had something to prove, could have had a number of assists if we had managed to put away our chances
well, i have to agree with you NG. I think Bendtner's the sorta character that feeds of negative energy. So with that in mind i totally agree with AW substituting him and when he starts him mid-week, he would be rearing to go. Theo needs to keep delivering those low crosses as they are by far more dangerous imo(has given Man IOU 10 OGs this season). Up the ARSENAL!!
I have said it, and i will say it time and time again. Bedtner is NOT and will NEVER be a world class striker. He will never be for us what RVP is. He will NOT win us important games. He will NOT win us PL titles and CL titles. If Bedtner played for Spurs, he would be mocked for his ability by 90% of the people who defend him on this site. We need a better striker then Bedtner to cover RVP if we want to win titles ...He's simply NOT good enough.
NB is definitely our best option right now. Let us leave the criticism for summer and get behind him now.
and when he scored in our opening goals in our last two PL games, he was good enough... calm down
You say that Fuikaka but if we win the title this year i will look back to Bendtners goal away to Stoke as a major factor.
He had a similar game last season against Blackburn at home. Trust me FuiKaKa Bendtner will be a 20+ goalscorer in the next few years. The whole Danish national team is built around this guy and they finished above Sweden and Portugal in the WC qualifiers. Two teams that are built around Ibrahimovic and Ronaldo respectively. Had he stayed on the pitch for another few minutes I'm sure he would have got his goal but Wenger rested him for Porto. Bendtner is a really confident guy and I'm sure this wont bother him too much. And I really hope the Theo-naysayers have seen the light today. He was our best player along with Denilson (who also gets undeserved criticism from Arsenal fans).
The main thing about Bendtner in this Arsenal team is the fact that the shape of the team is better when he's in it. Even when he doesn't have the best game, he makes other people more productive. I hate to make this analogy but he's similar to Heskey in the England team. Today he just had 'one of those days'.
Contrary to Brice Coffers opinion I thought Bendtner hit unibond league form 2day, hes god damn awful. If you had a world class striker (or a fit Van Persie) you be one awesome team. Yuk!
Still better than Robbie Kean though
A world class striker or a fit RvP? That's the same thing surely! As long as someone puts the ball in the net it doesn't matter too much who. Nobody has scored more goals in the PL than we have this season and in all competitions we have had 20 different scorers. That doesn't point to a need for strikers.
HuddersfieldYiddo, remember when you laughed at my suggestion in the summer that Arsenal would have one of the best attacks in Europe?

Come back when you have something better to say.
Anyways, I do see the retrospective irony in picking Nik as my player to watch. His performance reminded me of a match almost one year ago to the day, the 4-0 home result against Blackburn on March 14th. That game will be remembered for Arshavin's superb first goal for the club, but the scoreline didn't reflect the nervousness the home crowd felt due to Bendtner wastefulness. Like today, no matter how hard he tried, he wasn't going to score. However, his movement was excellent and he kept getting into good positions because of his determination. All good signs in a young player.
Anyone notice that after Bendtner was taken off, we stopped creating chances (bar the Arshavin goal).
Yes, Bendtner could have had a hat-trick yesterday, but at least with others putting away their chances it didn't matter! Bendtner always get into goal scoring positions which really helps when you are a Striker! Yes, I also had my head in my hands, when chance after chance went begging at the feet of Bendtner, lets just hope that he's saving his goals for Porto on Tuesday. Unlike yesterday I'll not be at The Grove, but in the pub, where I hope I'll be cheering his goals!!
just watched MOTD -- Theo had an unreal match... Nasri and Denilson were wonderful as well.
Any news on Cesc's injury? All i've seen so far is he "may be out for Porto due to hamstring"
Same update on Cesc. Arsenal can take Porto without Cesc, so I'll subscribe to resting him for the (more crucial) EPL top-of-the-table run-in. Porto's strategy appears to revolve around stopping Cesc and I believe his absence (if we keep them guessing till kick-off) could scuttle their game plan for Tuesday. If only we can take early advantage....
Same update on Cesc. Arsenal can take Porto without Cesc, so I'll subscribe to resting him for the (more crucial) EPL top-of-the-table run-in. Porto's strategy appears to revolve around stopping Cesc and I believe his absence (if we keep them guessing till kick-off) could scuttle their game plan for Tuesday. If only we can take early advantage....
Exactly GK, I've always asked people who critisize Bendtner if RvP would've scored in those positions. Of course, the answer is yes. But the fact is that not even RvP gets into so many goalscoring positions (admittedly their playing styles are different but you see what I mean). If RvP had the chances Bendtner does he'd get 40 goals a season. It will be easier for Bendtner to learn to finish consistantly than it is for another player to learn to get into the positions he does. Just let him work on it, build some momentum and he'll be scoring hatfuls. At the moment the only thing holding him back is in his head, and he can get over that.
Good point Rob, it doesnt' seem too great a step for Bendtner to add that final piece of the puzzle (finishing). He's got pretty much everything else you want from a striker; our overall team play is so much better with him on. Remember that Adebayor's breakout season came when he started putting away the simpler chances (though he did miss his share nonetheless).

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