By Bulldog Drummond
Arsenal’s injury list ahead of this FA Cup game – the last game to be played before the replays start, is at the upper end of the scale. He is the table modified from details on the Physioroom web site
|Player||Reason||Further Detail||Potential Return|
|Calum Chambers||Knee Injury||Ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament of his left knee.||29/08/2020|
|Kieran Tierney||Shoulder Injury||Dec 14: “Dislocated shoulder at West Ham and will rehabilitate for around three months.”||14/03/2020|
|Sead Kolasinac||Thigh Injury||Jan 20: “Hoping to return to full training in the winter break period.”||16/02/2020|
|Reiss Nelson||Thigh Injury||Jan 20: “Hoping to return to full training in the winter break period.”||16/02/2020|
|David Luiz||Suspended||Sending Off – Red Card||02/02/2020|
|Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang||Suspended||Sending Off – Red Card||02/02/2020|
Four injured players out two suspended. But less anyone gets too excited and starts up the old rumour about Arsenal having more than anyone else out, we might note that where as we have six players ruled out Bournemouth have seven. King, Stacey, Groeneveld, Stanislas, Daniels, Mepham and Brooks.
In terms of matches between the two clubs previously, this is the first time they have met in the FA Cup. Bournemouth’s best cup run (when they were known as Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic) was 1956/7 season…
|17 Nov 1956||Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic v Burton Albion||W||8-0||1|
|08 Dec 1956||Swindon Town v Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic||W||0-1||2|
|05 Jan 1957||Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic v Accrington Stanley||W||2-0||3|
|26 Jan 1957||Wolverhampton Wanderers v Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic||W||0-1||4|
|16 Feb 1957||Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic v Tottenham Hotspur||W||3-1||5|
|02 Mar 1957||Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic v Manchester United||L||1-2||6|
This season they have beaten Luton Town 4-0 in the cup prior to this game. In the league and league cup we are able for once to show all the games, between the clubs…
|27 Oct 1987||Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth||W||3-0||League Cup|
|28 Dec 2015||Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth||W||2-0||Premier League|
|07 Feb 2016||AFC Bournemouth v Arsenal||W||0-2||Premier League|
|27 Nov 2016||Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth||W||3-1||Premier League|
|03 Jan 2017||AFC Bournemouth v Arsenal||D||3-3||Premier League|
|09 Sep 2017||Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth||W||3-0||Premier League|
|14 Jan 2018||AFC Bournemouth v Arsenal||L||2-1||Premier League|
|25 Nov 2018||AFC Bournemouth v Arsenal||W||1-2||Premier League|
|27 Feb 2019||Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth||W||5-1||Premier League|
|06 Oct 2019||Arsenal v AFC Bournemouth||W||1-0||Premier League|
|26 Dec 2019||AFC Bournemouth v Arsenal||D||1-1||Premier League|
That shows one win for Bournemouth, 2-1 at their ground in 2018. Overall it is 11 matches played, one win for Bournemouth, two draws and eight wins for Arsenal. Away though we have only won twice
So what of the teams?
Maitland-Niles, Holding, Mustafi, Saka;
Pepe, Ozil, Martinelli;
The Guardian goes with
Bellerin, Sokratis, Holding, Saka;
Pepe, Ozil, Martinelli;
Football Talk gives us
Maitland Niles Sokratis Holding Saka
Pepe Caballos Martinelli
And in fact virtually all other predictors are running one of these or a slightly different combination of the players used above.
One interesting factor is that while normally teams that Arsenal play against are bolstered by constant talk in the media of how badly certain Arsenal players are performing, how weak the team is, how incompetent the management is and how chaotic the organisation of the club, at the moment there is a lot of talk about how good Martinelli is. This should put extra pressure on the Bournemouth defenders to mark him out of the game. That may or may not work as a tactic, but it should have the effect of allowing extra space for the other Arsenal forwards and attacking midfielders to explore. Pulling defenders out of position is as much a part of attacking as making killer passes or scoring goals.
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