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Arsenal v. Birmingham

Birmingham
vs.
Arsenal

St. Andrews Stadium

27/3/2010

15:00

Over land, and sea, and ... Birmingham?

The 'B' word is on everyone's mind. Yes, I'm talking about Birmingham. Before we can salivate over the glamourous tie with Lionel Messi and co, the team has an equally important task at hand.

December 26th, January 9th. Those two dates prove how difficult this match will be for Arsenal. Neither Chelsea nor Manchester United came away from St. Andrews this season with all three points. A win tomorrow would be a major step towards the title.

Vital Quotes:

Neither Arsene or the McLeish are interested in talking about what happened two years ago, and rightly so.

Wenger: 'Overall we want him to come back there and just win our game. That is the only way you can deal with that situation.'

McLeish: 'We have moved on. I don't want even want to talk about it. Eduardo is back playing which is great. I don't feel I need to comment on it. It is a couple of years ago.'

Birmingham Team News:

Birmingham are close to have a clean bill of health. Garry O'Connor (groin) and Lee Carsley (ankle) are long term absentees. David Murphy is also out with a hamstring injury. Gregory Vignal will be back on the bench.

Possible Starting XI: Hart, Carr, Johnson, Dann, Ridgewell, Bowyer, Ferguson, Fahey, Gardner, McFadden, Jerome

Player to watch: Joe Hart

It's not often I can pick a 'keeper as player to watch, but Birmingham don't have a great scoring record at all and Joe Hart is a fantastic up and coming goalie. If Birmingham get points out of this match, I'd put money on Hart making several key saves.

Arsenal Team News:

The big news during the week was that Thomas Vermaelen's appeal had failed, and the Belgian will miss his first league match of the season. Nicklas Bendtner is a doubt, but Arsene reckons he'll be okay.

My Predicted Starting XI: Almunia, Sagna, Silvestre, Campbell, Clichy, Song, Diaby, Fabregas, Eboue, Arshavin, Bendtner

Player to watch: Andrey Arshavin

Arshavin said he wasn't feeling well during the West Ham game which lead to criticism of his preformance. Also, some misguided comments to the rags about the strengths of the team haven't helped either. He is due a good preformance.

Match Facts & Stats

This is the 130th meeting between these sides. Arsenal lead by 57 wins to 38, with 34 draws.

Birmingham are unbeaten in their last 11 home games in the Premier League. If they avoid defeat on Saturday it will be their longest unbeaten run at home in the top flight since the 1973/74 season.

Nicklas Bendtner spent the 2006/07 season on loan at Birmingham, scoring 11 league goals

Ref Watch:

Howard ******* Webb is the head match official. Don't be surprised if he tries his damnedest to **** us over.

Match Prediction:

Birmingham have enjoyed a good a return to the Barclay's Premier League this season, but lately they've sputtered. It might be a good time to play them. I'll go with a 3-1 scoreline.

Next Fixtures:

31/3 (Wed) - FC Barcelona (h) - Champions League

3/4 (Sat) - Wolverhampton (h) - Premier League

3/6 (Tue) - FC Barcelona (a) - Champions League


Writer:Brice Coffer
Date:Friday March 26 2010
Time: 7:06PM

Comments

0
It sure will be interesting to see how Song & Sol cope in defence. It will be good practice for Song to slot in beside TV5 for the Barca game. Cmon you gunners!
Deltaforce
26/03/2010 19:39:00
0
Oh, no Coward Webb! I don't know if I can watch....
jaelle
26/03/2010 19:41:00
0
just hopin d match doesnt take d sting out of d lads.. to get anythin out of barca, u need to b fit physically' mentally' psychologically' emotionally (ie cesc)' hell even spiritually
shady gunna
26/03/2010 20:01:00
0
tippin walcott to do well. has a point to prove against brum. who concurs?
shady gunna
26/03/2010 20:12:00
0
theo was our best player that fateful day at st andrews in 2008, scored both goals i think
shady gunna
26/03/2010 20:14:00
0
Eduardo to score the winner
Sajit
26/03/2010 20:25:00
0
Must win!!
collow
26/03/2010 21:09:00
0
I dont think Wenger will play Sol and Silvestre together. Song looks certain to start in CB, and his partner is likely to be Sol (according to hints by Wenger). Better to focus on the League and worry about Barca later. I dont want a situation where neither the League nor the CL work for us.
prits
26/03/2010 21:22:00
0
Agree Prits They were good last sat when Verminator was betrayed by the ref. Hope that Eduardo plays and scores, it would by some justice for him at last.
Armory
26/03/2010 21:43:00
0
Yep. Agree; it has to be one match at a time now, even though, the 2nd leg comes up too soon after the home game against Wolves. Now, that gives me concern cos we are likely to play with the brakes in that game with Wolves, no matter how hard we try to focus. BTW, the Arshavin comments in the papers were recycled, presumably, to put pressure on the team spirit. That bit of news first came in the papers last quarter of 2009. The Rags!! Howard Webb?? For sure, he will be trying his best to do us in; don't know how we seem to get him for most games. Pah!!
Naijagunner
26/03/2010 22:56:00
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