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Arsenal v West Brom: Match Preview
Updated published : 08 Dec 2012 09:36:59
Manager Arsene Wenger accepts Arsenal have little margin for error if they are to force their way back up the Barclays Premier League table, starting with Saturday's match against West Brom.
The home defeat by Swansea last weekend made it just two wins in eight matches since the international break as the Gunners slumped to 10th place.
While Wenger maintains there is plenty of time left to make up the gap on the top four - which currently stands at five points - the Arsenal manager knows his beleaguered team cannot produce many more below-par performances as they prepare to tackle the fifth-placed Baggie at Emirates Stadium.
"The danger of our situation is the margin for error is very small, but it is also a good opportunity to show we can be consistent, and I believe we can be," Wenger said.
"Let's not go overboard. We have 24 games to play, we are in all the competitions, how many clubs would love to [be], so it is down to us to make the season right and to turn the season around well on our side.
"I am confident we will and I believe we have the quality to do it."
Midfielder Mikel Arteta was one of several first-team regulars to miss the midweek Champions League trip to Olympiacos, where a 2-1 defeat saw the Gunners miss out on top spot in Group B and with it seeding for the last 16.
The Spaniard revealed the squad were determined to put matters right on Saturday, with many having worked overtime at London Colney, analysing recent performances on DVD.
Wenger is confident of the desired response. He said: "There is one thing I don't question and that is the attitude and spirit of this team. But I can say that all day - what is important is that we win the game when we play, and that is what we want to do.
"We were a bit jaded [against Swansea], even if that is not accepted by many players, because we had two away games after the Champions League. I am confident we have refreshed and can show that."
West Brom 2-3 Arsenal 13/05/2012
Arsenal 3-0 West Brom 05/11/2011
West Brom 2-2 Arsenal 19/03/2011
Arsenal 2-3 West Brom 25/09/2010
West Brom 1-3 Arsenal 03/03/2009
Arsenal 1-0 West Brom 16/08/2008
Arsenal 2-1 West Brom