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Schalke 04 V Arsenal: Match Preview

06 Nov 2012 15:38:32

Schalke 04 V Arsenal: Match Preview

Schalke 04 V Arsenal - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Arsenal will be looking for revenge when they travel to Germany to take on Schalke after they were beaten 2-0 at The Emirates last time around losing their extraordinary 45 match unbeaten against non-English teams record in the process

This will not be an easy task for The Gunners though, as they have a number of key players out with injuries. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain picked up an injury in the Gunners Premier League defeat against Norwich. He'll be joining Laurent Koscielny and Abou Diaby on the sidelines.

One piece of good news however was the return of Jack Wilshere, after a 15 month lay off. The England international started his first match this season against QPR where Arsenal went on to win 1 – 0 but was rested against Reading in The Gunners 7-5 win after extra time. Wilshere then started the match against Manchester United but was sent off in the second half after receiving a second yellow card.

Schalke will be without German international Julian Draxler who suffered a broken wrist during the teams last Champions League outing against Montpelier, although Schalke manager Huub Stevens has said that Draxler could play with a cast on his arm if the player felt comfortable enough. Two other players that will be sidelined for the German team are Kyriakos Papadopulous who is suffering from chicken pox and Christoph Metzelder who is a doubt with a knee injury.

Arsenal go into Tuesday nights Champions League game on faltering form, losing three of their last five games, winning only two. The Gunners will be looking to be more creative against Schalke after they appeared completely devoid of idea's against Manchester United last Saturday. But with Chamberlain and Gervinho both out Podolski and Walcott will have to give the team width with the goal shy Giroud playing as the main striker.

Last Five Results:

Manchester United 2 – 1 Arsenal

Reading 5 – 7 Arsenal

Arsenal 1 – 0 QPR

Arsenal 0 – 2 Schalke 04

Norwich 1 – 0 Arsenal

Schalke have been in good form both domestically and in Europe, winning four out of their last five games, including wins over Borussia Dortmund and Arsenal. Although they did slump to a shock defeat in the Bundesliga against rivals Hoffenheim at the weekend.

Last Five Results:

Hoffenheim 3 – 2 Schalke 04

Schalke 04 3 – 0 Sandhausen

Schalke 04 1 – 0 Nurnberg

Arsenal 0 – 2 Schalke 04

Borussia Dortmund 1 – 2 Schalke 04

I would usually pick Theo Walcott as Arsenal's danger man, his blistering pace makes him a constant threat to any defence in the world. But as the England international isn't guaranteed a start at the moment I'll have to go with Santi Cazorla. He'll be the player pulling the strings in the middle of the park, he has a brilliant eye for that killer pass and has an awesome shot, with both feet might I add. He has been a delight to watch so far in the Premier League although I have to say he was not at his best against Norwich. So if Schalke want to stop Arsenal from playing, they need to close down Cazorla and give him no space whatsoever.

Schalke star player has to be Klaas-Jan Huntelaar. The Dutch international has been prolific for the German club, scoring 67 goals in 94 matches. Huntelaar is well travelled as a player and has had spells at some of the biggest clubs in the world including Ajax, Real Madrid and AC Milan. The player has already notched six goals in twelve appearances so far this season and that stat alone makes him my man to watch for Schalke.

The two teams have only faced each other three times previously, back in the Champions League group stages in 2001 and in this seasons group stage where Schalke won at The Emirates. Schalke now just have the edge over the English team winning two of the games to Arsenals one.

Prediction

I'm backing Arsenal to bounce back from their recent patchy form with a win against Schalke. Although they will have to produce a performance with a lot more creativity and attacking threat than the one seen at Old Trafford this weekend.

Schalke 04 0 - 1 Arsenal

Podolski getting the only goal after being put through by Cazorla.


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