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FA Cup

  • January 9, 2012
  • • 19:45
  • • Emirates Stadium, London
  • Referee: M. Clattenburg
  • • Attendance: 59615
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Arsenal - Leeds United Preview: Hosts looking to make FA Cup fourth round for 16th successive season

Arsenal - Leeds United Preview: Hosts looking to make FA Cup fourth round for 16th successive season

Arsen Wenger - Arsenal

Arsene Wenger's men have lost just once in 35 FA Cup matches at home, but Leeds brought about that defeat with a 1-0 victory in 1997 and will be hoping for a repeat on Monday


PROBABLE LINEUPS

ARSENAL

Almunia
Koscielny, Squillaci, Miquel, Hoyte
Oxlade-Chamberlain, Song, Coquelin, Benayoun, Chamakh, Park
LEEDS UTD
 
Lonergan
Connolly, Lees, O’Dea, White
Townsend, Clayton, Brown, Pugh
McCormack, Becchio

The headlines for Arsenal this week have been dominated by the return of Thierry Henry on a two-month loan, but the Gunners’ legend is unlikely to make the starting XI, with Marouane Chamakh - who is yet to depart for the African Cup of Nations - likely to partner Chu-Young Park in attack. Gervinho is on Afcon duty with Ivory Coast.

The midfield is likely to feature youngsters Francis Coquelin and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, while Yossi Benayoun may also be handed a start after some impressive recent performances. In defence, Thomas Vermaelen (calf) and Bacary Sagna (ankle) join Andre Santos (ankle), Carl Jenkinson (back) and Kieran Gibbs (groin) on the sidelines, while Johan Djourou is suspended.

Leeds United were rocked by news on Tuesday that centre-back Patrick Kisnorbo will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. The visitors are also without in-form midfielder Robert Snodgrass and club captain Jonny Howson.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • Arsenal have lost just one of their last 35 FA cup games at home - a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Leeds in 1997.
  • Thierry Henry (pictured right) has scored a phenomenal 11 goals in 11 games against the visitors, bagging four in his last match against them in April 2004.
  • Arsenal have made it past the third round in each of the last 15 seasons, a better record than any other side.
  • The hosts have scored at least three goals in four out of five of their last matches against the visitors.
  • However, Arsenal have averaged just one goal per game in their last seven fixtures in all competitions.
  • This is the second season in a row that the two sides have been drawn against each other at this stage of the competition, with Arsenal winning a replay at Elland Road 3-1 in last season’s tie, after a 1-1 draw at the Emirates.
  • Leeds have been drawn against a ‘top four’ club for the third season in a row at this stage of the FA Cup, facing Arsenal in 2011 and Manchester United in 2010.
  • The away side have won just one of their last 13 encounters with top-flight opponents, beating Manchester United 1-0 in 2010.

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Players to watch

A. Oxlade-Chamberlain

Position: Attacker

Games: 0

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The young attacker may not have made the impact that many had hoped for when he joined the club from Southampton in the summer of 2011, but he is still just 18-years-old and will no doubt be crucial to Arsenal's and England’s future.

He has a great combination of pace and strength which he will use to try and exploit Leeds down the right flank, but the defence will also need to be wary of his ability to shoot from distance.

A. White

Position: Midfielder

Games: 0

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A product of the club’s Academy system, the left-back made his debut for Leeds at 16 in 2008. He’s been partnered in defence by a number of different players this season due to squad rotation and injuries, but has still managed to put in some impressive performances.

He’ll be looking to keep Oxlade-Chamberlain contained on Monday evening, but will also cause the Arsenal defence problems with overlapping runs down the left-flank.

Editor's Prediction

Both sides come into the match without a number of crucial players, but I think that the squad depth required in the Premier League will give Arsenal that edge, as they have a number of quality players ready to fill the gaps. I’m backing a 3-1 win for the Gunners, with Thierry Henry to make an appearance and snatch a fairytale goal against the side he seems to love scoring against so much.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Arsenal

Leeds United

Wins
4
1
0
Wins

Betting & Predictions

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