Arsenal vs Stoke Preview, predicted line up and score by KJ
After the hectic Christmas schedule, we’ve had to wait an entire week for this game which has probably been a much needed rest for the team. Stoke embarrassed us at the Britannia earlier on this season and I’m hoping the players are eager for revenge.
We’ve got a few players back from injury in Flamini, Ramsey and Özil. I don’t expect them to start but they should get minutes against Stoke allowing them to be slightly more prepared for the game at the Etihad next week.
With a week’s rest, Alexis will most likely start and his relentless pressing should see some mistakes from the likes of Huth and Shawcross. Cazorla is playing really well at the moment and he seems to have a very good understanding with Alexis.
To win this game, we’ll need to dominate possession but also ensure that we prevent Stoke from getting crosses into the box. That requires good defensive work by the full backs and wingers.
Predicted line up:
Debuchy – Mertesacker – Koscielny – Gibbs
Coquelin – Oxlade-Chamberlain
Alexis – Rosicky – Cazorla
The defence is fully fit which is a miracle in my eyes. It didn’t do very well against Southampton but I’m hoping that they’ll learn together and will improve over the next month providing they all stay fit.
Szczesny has a lot to prove after his appalling performance against the Saints.
The midfield will still most likely contain Coquelin and Oxlade-Chamberlain as Ramsey and Flamini probably won’t be risked immediately.
Rosicky was pretty good against Hull and will probably start against Stoke. He’ll aid the pressing with Alexis which should expose Stoke as they play out from the back.
Giroud will be back from suspension and I’m expecting him to really help us in defensive corners as well as providing that physical presence up front.
It will be a tight game but we should win comfortably. 2- 0.