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Gunners hopeful of beating weather

06 Jan 2010 09:48:30

Gunners hopeful of beating weather

Tuesday night's Carling Cup semi-final first leg between Blackburn against Aston Villa and the eagerly-anticipated derby between Manchester City and Manchester United in the other semi-final, which had been scheduled for Wednesday night, were postponed after Arctic conditions swept across the north west. Although the snow has drifted south overnight and on Wednesday morning, it is hoped conditions around the stadium and the capital's transport network will not be adversely affected so as to force the game to be cancelled on safety grounds. During February 2009, Arsenal's FA Cup fourth-round replay against Cardiff at the Emirates Stadium had to be postponed when severe snow brought London to a standstill. The Gunners could close the gap on leaders Chelsea to one point should they beat managerless strugglers Bolton, who are looking to agree compensation deal with Burnley for Owen Coyle. Undersoil heating at modern top-flight stadia now means surfaces are likely to be playable in most conditions. However, severe weather often makes access to grounds from surrounding areas a problem. With no immediate end in sight to the current cold spell, the disruption could continue into the weekend. Most of the country is expected to be covered in snow by the end of the day and then after that continued sub-zero temperatures will cause more problems. With night-time temperatures predicted to average around minus four and barely get above zero during the day, there will be little opportunity for grounds to thaw. All Premier League grounds are required to have undersoil heating, but frozen pitches are likely to be a problem at lower levels and north of the border. Arsenal v Bolton Match Specials: Both Teams to Score 1st HF 5/1


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