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Arsenal - West Brom Preview: Wenger's side seek first win in five matches
The Gunners have taken just six points from their last six matches in all competitions, but face a Baggies side also in need of a win after suffering two straight defeats
By Alfie Meekings
Jenkinson, Vermaelen, Mertesacker, Gibbs
Rosicky, Arteta, Wilshere
Oxlade-Chamberlain, Giroud, Cazorla
Reid, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell
Odemwingie, Morrison, Gera
Arsene Wenger rested a number of key players during Arsenal’s 2-1 defeat at the hands of Olympiakos on Tuesday, but the Frenchman has revealed that both Lukas Podolski (hamstring) and Theo Walcott (calf) missed out through injury and will not return in time to face the Baggies.
Bacary Sagna (foot), Laurent Koscielny (thigh) and Andre Santos (abdominal) will all miss the clash, as will long-term absentee Abou Diaby (thigh), who is not expected to return until the end of December.
There is some good news for the hosts, however, as Tomas Rosicky - who had a fine game in Greece midweek - has returned to fitness and should feature in the starting line-up.
Steve Clarke told reporters last week that Ben Foster could face further surgery on his groin, in which case he could face another 10 days out of action. But, Billy Jones and Boaz Myhill are both set to return to fitness after suffering from a bug that spread through the players during the week.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
Arsenal are without a win in their last four matches in all competitions.
- The Gunners have taken just six points from their last six matches.
- Mikel Arteta (pictured, right) has the best pass success rate in the Premier League, with an average of 93% of his passes reaching their target.
- The hosts currently boast the highest rate of possession in the top-flight, averaging 59.9% per game.
- West Brom have won two of their last three away from home. The Baggies are 18/1 to beat Arsenal 1-0 with bet365.
- However, the Baggies have beaten Arsenal just once in their last nine attempts.
- The vistors have benefitted this season from a variety a goal threats, as Shane Long and Romelu Lukaku have both netted five, Peter Odemwingie four and James Morrison three.
- On average, the visitors cross the ball just 18 times in each game - less than any other side in the league.
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Top 3 Predictions
Arsenal 2-0 West Bromwich Albion
- 14.07 %
Arsenal 2-1 West Bromwich Albion
- 12.2 %
Arsenal 3-1 West Bromwich Albion
- 11.66 %
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Apr 6, 2013||West Bromwich Albion 1 - Arsenal 2|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Dec 8, 2012||Arsenal 2 - West Bromwich Albion 0|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||May 13, 2012||West Bromwich Albion 2 - Arsenal 3|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Nov 5, 2011||Arsenal 3 - West Bromwich Albion 0|
|England - Premier League (EPL)||Mar 19, 2011||West Bromwich Albion 2 - Arsenal 2|
|May 19, 2013||Newcastle 0 - Arsenal 1||EPL|
|May 14, 2013||Arsenal 4 - Wigan Athletic 1||EPL|
|May 4, 2013||QPR 0 - Arsenal 1||EPL|
|Apr 28, 2013||Arsenal 1 - Man Utd. 1||EPL|
|Apr 20, 2013||Fulham 0 - Arsenal 1||EPL|
|30||Sebastien Gabriel Tamaş||Defender|