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UEFA Champions League

  • November 1, 2011
  • • 3:45 PM
  • • Emirates Stadium, London
  • Referee: P. Tagliavento
  • • Attendance: 59961

Champions League Preview: Arsenal - Marseille

Champions League Preview: Arsenal - Marseille

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Gunners are taking on a French club for the first time at the Emirates Stadium, with their last encounter against a Ligue 1 side at home being a 2-1 defeat to Auxerre at Highbury.



Djourou, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Santos
 Song, Arteta, Ramsey
Walcott, Van Persie, Gervinho


Fanni, Diawara, N'Koulou, Morel
Diarra, Cheyrou
Valbuena, Remy, A. Ayew
Arsene Wenger may have doubts concerning the right-back spot for this fixture, with Johan Djourou and Carl Jenkinson fighting for a place in the starting lineup.

Meanwhile, Bacary Sagna and Jack Wilshere are both out with ankle injuries and are not expected to play any part in this clash. Andrey Arshavin could come in place of Gervinho if the latter needs rest following the exertions at Stamford Bridge, where the Gunners defeated Chelsea in a sensational 5-3 victory.

Didier Deschamps may put forth an attacking lineup to take revenge on Arsenal for the defeat it suffered at home, while hoping to boost its prospects of qualifying for the next stage of the Champions League.

Mathieu Valbuena is likely to fall back a bit when Marseille are starved of possession, otherwise he should play a more attacking role with Loic Remy and Jordan Ayew proving to be the primary threat in the attacking third of the pitch. The latter returns after serving a tournament suspension, while Rod Fanni also comes back into the fold after being banned.

Stephane Mbia is the club's only absentee after suffering a broken metatarsal in August.


  • Arsenal is so far undefeated in the group stage of the Champions League, winning two and drawing one of its three games. Every other team in Group F has lost at least one match.
  • This will be the first time that the Gunners is taking on a French club at the Emirates Stadium in the European competition. The last time the club played a team from Ligue 1 was in 2002-03, when it lost 2-1 to Auxerre at Highbury.
  • Arsene Wenger's men have had trouble keeping clean sheets in recent weeks, as it has managed only one in its last seven games in all competitions. But that came against Didier Deschamps' men at the Stade Velodrome - where it registered a 1-0 victory.
  • In the last five games for the Gunners, skipper Robin van Persie has scored seven goals.
  • Marseille has scored 12 goals in its last four away games in the Champions League, with its biggest victory coming in the form of a 7-0 thrashing of Zilina in 2010.
  • The visitors are also on an undefeated run of six games in Ligue 1, but find themselves in a mid-table position due to a poor start to their domestic campaign.
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Olympique Marseille


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Olympique de Marseille OM
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Olympique de Marseille OM
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