Swansea vs Arsenal
Coach Micheal Laudrup:
“Europe can be a hindrance. You see it not just in this country but all over Europe, especially with teams who are not used to playing European football like us. But it is not so much tiredness physically, but because of all the games players can lose a bit of focus. It’s not even the number of games but the fact that you can have three matches in three different competitions in six days, like we have just had.”
Captain Ashley Williams is a major doubt. The Wales defender has been struggling with an ankle injury and manager Michael Laudrup says he has less than a 50 per cent chance of featuring against the Gunners, with Jordi Amat set to deputise. Pablo Hernandez will again miss out to due to a hamstring injury.
During the week, Arsene Wenger received a backing of the club to stay in charge for many more season, with the Frenchman celebrating his 17 years in charge. A four consecutive wins now sees Arsenal lie atop of the league (as against what many had predicted) and It will be nice to see Arsenal maintain the tempo all through. The attack line had proven effective with 10 goals scored in last 4 matches.
Arsenal will give fitness tests to midfielder Aaron Ramsey (thigh) and Mathieu Flamini (shoulder). England forward Theo Walcott has responded well to surgery on a minor abdominal problem, but is now set for up to five weeks recovery time while Santi Cazorla (ankle), Yaya Sanogo (back), Lukas Podolski (hamstring), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Abou Diaby (both knee) are all out.
Neither of the sides is playing a defensive oriented football. Their form and moral also speaks more about why such trend would continue as both team files out; Swansea will be seeking urgent redemption after the cup exit and their defence line should show weakness to concede at least once against another attacking organized side.
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