Arsenal travel to the Britannia stadium to play Stoke for their second game of the season. Arsenal and Stoke both drew their matches last Saturday against Sunderland and Reading respectively. Stoke away is always a difficult place as the Gunners have only managed 1 win from 5 over the last five years, losing three.
Last time these two sides met at the Britannia resulted in a 1-1 draw. Peter Crouch opened the scoring early on in the game. Arsenal did equalise soon via Van Persie but couldn’t find a winner for the rest of the match. It was A frustrating result for the Gunners in their race for a top four finish.
Probable line up:
Wojciech Szczesny had a rib problem early on this week but Wenger confirmed that the young Pole would be available for the Stoke game.
Arsenal will still miss Koscielny and Sagna in the defence which would mean Arsène Wenger going for the same back four he played last week against Sunderland – Gibbs, Vermaelen (c), Mertesacker and Jenkinson.
The midfield trio might see Alex Oxlade Chamberlain start alongside Arteta and Cazorla after the English midfielder returned from injury this week. Last week it was Diaby but it would be no surprise to see Chamberlain as one of the three midfielders as he played in centre midfield during whole preseason.
Arsenal would need a tall and strong forward – who is good in the air -up front against a physical Stoke side which means that Wenger might give Giroud his full debut with Podolski down the left wing and Walcott down the right.
It would be difficult for Arsenal at Stoke but the result should end up in a 2-1 Gunners’ win. It is only the second game but every point will be vital for Gunners this season to challenge for a possible top two finish.