Writer: Andrew Joyce
Date:Friday December 3 2010
Fulham make the short journey to N5 to take on Arsenal this Saturday. Having not won on the road for an eternity you`d think going to the Emirates Stadium would fill us with fear, but you`d be wrong. Arsenal`s recent record suggests that the Emirates is far from a fortress with Arsene Wenger`s side having lost their last three Premier League fixtures there!
Despite their apparently dodgy home form, Arsenal, under the guidance of Arsene Wenger, remain in good spirits and the Frenchman gave us an indication of how strong the spirit is within their camp by remarking to the media,
"We are in a strong position in every single competition - that means overall, the attitude is right, the spirit of the squad is right."
I guess we`ll find out on Saturday will we not!
Arsenal go into this fixture knowing they have to get a result in the Champions League, in midweek, to qualify for the knockout stages, but Arsene will be reluctant to rest too many of his senior stars as he already has a squad hit by injury.
Definitely missing will be Diaby, the very influential Fabregas, Frimpong and Vermaelen whilst Nasri and Squillaci are both rated as doubtful
Just so I can see what all the fuss is about, the lad may have talent but he`s yet to convince me he`s the real deal!
Mark Hughes takes his side to the Emirates on the back of taking only one point out of six in two consecutive away games. Beaten by Manchester City and held to a draw by Birmingham, Mark will be hoping that some of his walking wounded recovers in sufficient time to feature against one of the title favourites.
Definitely out though are long term casualties - Philippe Senderos and Bobby Zamora and Mark will also have to do without Salcido, Dembele, Halliche and Stoor
However, Andrew Johnson is likely to return after a slight hamstring injury saw him rested last weekend.
The scene is set for the Australian to have a great game and show Arsene Wenger what he missed out on!
The odds on a Fulham win do not look that good. The history books show that in 23 games away to Arsenal we`ve yet to win with Arsenal winning 20 and with 3 being drawn.
Couple that fact that it is 25 matches since we registered an away win, in the Premier League, and you can see what the bookmakers make Arsenal clear favourites to win!
The man in the middle will be Chris Foy who will be ably assisted by Darren Cann and Bob Pollock with Mark Halsey patrolling the technical areas.
Can Arsenal really lose four Premier League homes games this side of Christmas? Their recent form would suggest it is a possibility. But are we the team to inflict that fourth defeat after having not own away from home for so long I fear not! The best I fear we can hope for is a draw!
After visiting the Emirates Stadium our next Premier League fixture will see us entertain Sunderland next weekend.
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Date:Friday December 3 2010
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