Arsenal welcome the newly-crowned FA Cup winners Wigan Athletic to the Emirates tomorrow in what is a crucial but also worth three points as any other Premier League match.
Wigan are fighting for their Premier League survival, so they need the three points just as badly as Arsenal do tomorrow, so there will be no shortage of attacking play. Roberto Martinez can piece together something looking like an attack when he needs to, and this will probably work out for Arsenal, too, as the Gunners tend to play more freely against teams who leave space rather than those who just play a 4-5-1 and stand tall. Wigan may also be a little tired from their cup win over the weekend, so Arsenal should have space to roam.
And roam they must. The three points are crucial to stay ahead of Tottenham Hotspur, and the goal is simple: win the last two games, and the 4th Champions League spot is in Arsenal's hands.
Arsenal have no new injury worries with Arsene Wenger's only selection dilemma being whether to select Kieran Gibbs or Nacho Monreal at left-back, while Jack Wilshere is also fighting to be given the nod over Tomas Rosicky. Olivier Giroud serves the final match of his three-game ban so Lukas Podolski looks set to lead the line once more.
Wigan may bring Ben Watson back into the starting line-up after the midfielder came off the bench to score the winner at Wembley in the FA Cup final. However, Roberto Martinez remains without Ronnie Stam (ankle), Jean Beausejour (hamstring) and Maynor Figueroa (groin).
Wigan Athletic: L/W/D/L/L/D
Arsenal: Szczesny (GK); Sagan, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs; Arteta, Wilshere; Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Cazorla; Podolski
Wigan Athletic: Joel (GK); Boyce, Alcáraz, Scharner; McArthur, McCarthy, Watson, Espinoza; McManaman, Koné, Maloney
Location: Emirates Stadium, London, England (Arsenal)
Kick-off: 1145 am PST, 245 pm EST, 745 pm BST
Live Streaming: United Kingdom (Sky Sports 1 Ireland, Sky Sports 1/HD), United States (Fox Soccer Channel)
Arsenal 1-1 Wigan
Did You Know?
- Arsenal and Wigan played each other in the last game at the old Highbury stadium back in May 2006. Only Johan Djourou remains at the Gunners, although he is currently out on loan with Hannover 96, while Mike Pollitt and Paul Scharner are still with the Latics.
- Arsenal have scored 43 goals at home in the Premier League this season, second only to champions Manchester United.
- The Gunners have only one ever-present in their squad, that being Santi Cazorla, who has appeared in all 36 of their games so far.
- The previous game between the two sides was settled 1-0 in Arsenal's favor thanks to a penalty from Mikel Arteta.
- Of all the teams around them, Wigan have taken the most wins on the road in the league this season, with five ahead of their trip to the Emirates.
- The Latics took their first-ever league victory over Arsenal at the Emirates last season, with two quick-fire goals from Franco Di Santo and Jordi Gomez gave them a 2-1 win.