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Played
February 16, 2013 11:00 PM MYT
Emirates Stadium — London
Referee:‬ M. Dean‎
Attendance:‬ 60070‎
 
 

Arsenal - Blackburn Preview: Defensive injuries hamper Gunners ahead of Rovers clash

With Thomas Vermaelen and Laurent Koscielny ruled out and Wenger rotating ahead of their clash with Bayern Munich, the Championship outfit will hope to cause an FA Cup upset

By Sam Wells

FA Cup - Brighton & Hove Albion v Arsenal, Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud
Getty Images
  PROBABLE LINEUPS

ARSENAL

Szczesny
Sagna, Mertesacker, Miquel, Monreal
Arteta, Diaby
Gervinho, Rosicky, Oxlade-Chamberlain
Podolski
BLACKBURN ROVERS

Kean
Orr, Dann, Hanley, Olsson
Pedersen, Murphy, Lowe, Olsson
Kazim-Richards, Rhodes

Arsene Wenger looks set to rotate his squad from the team that overcame Sunderland in a 1-0 win last Saturday, as he appears intent upon resting some of his key players ahead of their Champions League clash with Bayern Munich on Tuesday.

Ignasi Miquel, having come on as a late substitute in the win against the Black Cats, looks set to deputise at centre-back, as Thomas Vermaelen (ankle) and Laurent Koscielny (calf) continue to struggle with injury.

There are further repercussions from their exertions against Sunderland as Jack Wilshere's dead leg in that tie rules him out of this FA Cup clash, while Carl Jenkinson is also ruled out with suspension after his red card in the same game.

Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey, Santi Cazorla and Oliver Giroud are also likely to be rested from the team that started the Sunderland game, with Abou Diaby, Gervinho, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Tomas Rosicky and Lukas Podolski coming in, as their manager clearly has one eye on their Champions League game in midweek.

Blackburn, meanwhile, will look to play a full-strength side as manager Michael Appleton appears ready to keep faith in the team that earned a hard-fought 1-1 draw against Brighton last Saturday.

The one change that is likely to be made, however, comes in the form of the experienced Morten Gamst-Pedersen replacing DJ Campbell, with Colin Kazim-Richards assuming a role alongside the free-scoring Jordan Rhodes upfront.

Jake Kean, meanwhile, looks set to keep his place in goal as former England international Paul Robinson remains out-of-favour with new boss Appleton.


  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Arsenal and Blackburn's recent encounters have been full of goals; their two encounters last season contained 15 goals.
  • The last of those two games, with the Gunners at home, saw Arsenal romp to a 7-1 win, with Robin van Persie bagging a hat-trick.
  • Wenger's side have also been impressive at home of late, having lost only one of the past seven games at the Emirates Stadium.
  • Theo Walcott, though unlikely to start here, has been in blistering form this season and has already equalled his highest amount of assists in a Premier League season - eight (the same as 2011-12).
  • Blackburn's Jordan Rhodes (pictured right) is also in scintillating form, having scored seven goals in his last seven games for  Rovers.
  • They have also been extremely tight at the back of late; having conceded only two goals in their last five games.


Field Report
Reader's Predictions
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Head to Head
England - FA Cup ‎(FA)‎ Feb 16, 2013 Arsenal FC 0 - Blackburn Rovers 1
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Feb 4, 2012 Arsenal FC 7 - Blackburn Rovers 1
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Sep 17, 2011 Blackburn Rovers 4 - Arsenal FC 3
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Apr 3, 2011 Arsenal FC 0 - Blackburn Rovers 0
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England - Premier League ‎(EPL)‎ Aug 28, 2010 Blackburn Rovers 1 - Arsenal FC 2
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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Wojciech SzczesnyGoalkeeper
6Laurent KoscielnyDefender
17MonrealDefender
5Thomas VermaelenDefender
24A. DiabyMidfielder
8Mikel ArtetaMidfielder
20Francis CoquelinMidfielder
7Tomas RosickyMidfielder
15Alex Oxlade-ChamberlainStriker
12Olivier GiroudStriker
27GervinhoStriker
25Vito MannoneGoalkeeper
3Bacary SagnaDefender
16Aaron RamseyMidfielder
19Santi CazorlaMidfielder
10Jack WilshereMidfielder
9Lukas PodolskiStriker
14Theo WalcottStriker
34Jake Kean Goalkeeper
16Bradley OrrDefender
31Grant HanleyDefender
23Martin OlssonDefender
6Scott DannDefender
35Jason LoweDefender
14Lee WilliamsonMidfielder
12Morten-Gamst PedersenMidfielder
-Marcus OlssonMidfielder
-Kazım KazımMidfielder
-Jordan RhodesStriker
-Sebastian UsaiGoalkeeper
5Gaël GivetDefender
44Karim RekikDefender
5David BentleyMidfielder
-FabioMidfielder
25David GoodwillieStriker
21Nuno GomesStriker
Results
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Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Britt Assombalonga Britt Assombalonga
Midfielder
Peterborough United
5 1
Joe Garner Joe Garner
Striker
Preston North End
5 0
Sam Clucas Sam Clucas
Midfielder
Mansfield Town
5 0
Chris Porter Chris Porter
Striker
Sheffield United
4 2
Reuben Reid Reuben Reid
Striker
Plymouth
4 1