15 February 2013

Blackburn vs. Arsenal Preview

Tomorrow's match invites Blackburn in for a 5th round FA Cup match. We haven't seen them since last year's 7-1 thrashing because they were relegated. I faced Blackburn last night on the Wii and did quite well, with Walcott netting twice and Giroud once. Final score, which I'll offer as a prediction for tomorrow's match: 3-0. Alright, alright--I know it's not quite the same. After all, I haven't earned enough points to purchase Szczcezczny yet, so Almunia's in goal, but it still serves as a decent proxy, I believe.

Wilshere blows past the Rovers' D...on the Wii.
In real news, Vermaelen will be back, as will Gervinho, and we may see some rotation. I'd like to see Wilshere rested after his injury against Sunderland, and Kos might still sit to rest his calf. Here then is who I'd like to see: Giroud, Walcott; Podolski, Cazorla, Ramsey, Arteta; Sagna, Vermaelen, Mertesacker, Monreal; Woj. Gervinho had a nice run in the Africa Cup, so I would like to see him come on, probably for Walcott if only because they're fairly similar in their skill-set and approaches. Time will tell.

On the Blackburn side, they seem to have a number of issues. The Rovers will also be missing a number of players: Josh Morris (cup-tied from time at Rotherham and Campbell), DJ Campbell (on loan from QPR), and then a bunch of injures: Dunn, King, Hanley, Best, Etuhu. I don't know these players all that well, but having seven players out makes us look like we're positively fit as fiddles. Leading scorer Jordan Rhodes broke his nose but did play in their Wednesday match, so we'll almost certainly see him.

Both teams are on tidy little 5-game undefeated runs, and one of those will have to end tomorrow. Apologies to Blackburn, I do with you well in your battle to earn promotion from the Championship, but my goodwill ends there. The Gunners will, I pray, finish this before it even gets a chance to start. See you in about 24 hours...