Game : Arsenal v West Bromwich Albion (WBA)
Competition : Third Round, Carling Cup
Venue : Emirates Stadium, London
Time : 20:45 GMT
Arsenal start their campaign for the 2009-10 Carling Cup at home to WBA. Arsenal play their first game of the tournament whereas their opponents scraped through in the second round. WBA overcame Rotherham United 4-3 on penalties after a 3-3 draw in round two of the competition. Arsenal are well-known for trying out their junior players in the Carling Cup, but that should not be a hindrance as they start clear favourites for this game at home.
Form guide ( Last five games- all competitions- Arsenal)
Arsenal v Celtic (3-0) Win
Manchester United v Arsenal (1-2) Loss
Manchester City v Arsenal (2-4) Loss
Standard Liege v Arsenal (3-2) Win
Arsenal v Wigan (4-0) Win
As we clearly see, Arsenal have won their last two home games scoring a minimum of three goals and keeping two clean sheets. It will be difficult to for WBA to score at Emirates.
Form guide (West Bromwich Albion – last five games)
WBA v Rotherham (3-3) Draw
Sheff Utd v WBA (2-2) Draw
WBA v Plymouth (3-1) Win
WBA v Doncaster (3-1) Win
WBA v Middlesbrough (5-0) Win
WBA are in healthy form going into the game, winning their last 3 and have not lost a single game in the entire season so far. Chris Brunt was the chief destroyer as they put five past Boro in their previous game. He will be the man to watch out for. Also, striker Roman Bednar and winger Jerome Thomas are in good form.
WBA lost to Arsenal both times last season. A 1-0 loss on the opening day at the Emirates Stadium was followed by a 3-1 defeat at the Hawthorns. Albion would need a miracle to ruffle Arsenal’s feathers.
Match verdict: I’d probably put my money on Arsenal. Even if they play the likes of Mannone, Wilshere, Ramsey and Gibbs, the quality would just be too much for WBA to handle.
Arsenal 2-0 WBA (Ramsey, Rosicky)