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  • Date:23 Feb 2011
  • Kick-off:19:45
  • Venue:Emirates Stadium
  • Attendance:60,041
  • Squillaci (7)
Goal!

Live Commentary

95mins

Free kick awarded for a foul by Bacary Sagna on Ricardo Fuller. Asmir Begovic restarts play with the free kick.

93mins

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Alex Song by Glenn Whelan. Samir Nasri takes the direct free kick.

92mins

Short corner worked by Andrey Arshavin.

89mins

Corner from the left by-line taken by Jermaine Pennant, Glenn Whelan fouled by Neves Denilson, the ref awards a free kick. Shot comes in from Jermaine Pennant from the free kick.

87mins

Andy Wilkinson joins the action as a substitute, replacing Marc Wilson. The assistant referee flags for offside against Andrey Arshavin. Indirect free kick taken by Asmir Begovic.

85mins

Inswinging corner taken by Jack Wilshere from the right by-line.

84mins

Marc Wilson receives a yellow card. Foul by Marc Wilson on Marouane Chamakh, free kick awarded. Free kick crossed right-footed by Andrey Arshavin, clearance by Ryan Shawcross.

82mins

John Carew is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Indirect free kick taken by Wojciech Szczesny.

82mins

Ricardo Fuller takes a shot. Gael Clichy gets a block in.

81mins

The assistant referee signals for offside against Ricardo Fuller. Indirect free kick taken by Wojciech Szczesny.

80mins

Marouane Chamakh joins the action as a substitute, replacing Nicklas Bendtner.

79mins

Foul by Ryan Shawcross on Bacary Sagna, free kick awarded. Wojciech Szczesny takes the free kick.

78mins

Ricardo Fuller replaces Jonathan Walters.

77mins

The assistant referee signals for offside against Nicklas Bendtner. Asmir Begovic takes the indirect free kick.

74mins

Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Jack Wilshere, Header from close in by Nicklas Bendtner misses to the right of the target.

73mins

Free kick awarded for a foul by Dean Whitehead on Nicklas Bendtner. Free kick taken by Gael Clichy.

71mins

Neves Denilson is brought on as a substitute for Theo Walcott.

68mins

John Carew is ruled offside. Wojciech Szczesny restarts play with the free kick.

67mins

Foul by Johan Djourou on John Carew, free kick awarded. Jermaine Pennant takes the free kick.

64mins

Effort from inside the area by Theo Walcott misses to the right of the target.

64mins

Jack Wilshere takes a shot. Save by Asmir Begovic.

63mins

Alex Song challenges Danny Pugh unfairly and gives away a free kick. Danny Pugh takes the free kick.

61mins

Theo Walcott takes a shot. Robert Huth gets a block in.

58mins

Robert Huth produces a header from inside the area that goes over the crossbar.

54mins

Gael Clichy is given a yellow card. Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jermaine Pennant by Gael Clichy. The free kick is swung in right-footed by Jermaine Pennant.

53mins

The offside flag is raised against Jermaine Pennant. Gael Clichy restarts play with the free kick.

52mins

Jermaine Pennant gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Andrey Arshavin. Andrey Arshavin takes the direct free kick.

52mins

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Andrey Arshavin by Dean Whitehead. Sebastien Squillaci takes the direct free kick.

49mins

Jonathan Walters takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post, clearance made by Nicklas Bendtner.

49mins

Ryan Shawcross takes a shot. Johan Djourou gets a block in.

47mins

John Carew concedes a free kick for a foul on Johan Djourou. Wojciech Szczesny restarts play with the free kick.

44mins

Shot from just outside the box by Dean Whitehead goes over the bar.

43mins

Jonathan Walters receives a yellow card. Jonathan Walters concedes a free kick for a foul on Theo Walcott. Direct free kick taken by Jack Wilshere.

41mins

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Dean Whitehead by Sebastien Squillaci. Jermaine Pennant crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing, Wojciech Szczesny makes a save.

39mins

Robert Huth challenges Andrey Arshavin unfairly and gives away a free kick. Samir Nasri produces a shot on goal direct from the free kick.

39mins

Corner taken short by Samir Nasri.

37mins

Samir Nasri is ruled offside. Asmir Begovic takes the free kick.

36mins

Volleyed right-footed shot by John Carew. Wojciech Szczesny makes a save.

34mins

The ball is crossed by Bacary Sagna, clearance by Robert Huth.

29mins

The offside flag is raised against John Carew. Indirect free kick taken by Sebastien Squillaci.

27mins

Andrey Arshavin takes a shot. Asmir Begovic makes a save.

14mins

Andrey Arshavin is brought on as a substitute for Francesc Fabregas.

12mins

Nicklas Bendtner challenges Jermaine Pennant unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Marc Wilson.

9mins

Glenn Whelan takes a shot. Blocked by Francesc Fabregas.

7mins

Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Jack Wilshere, Sebastien Squillaci grabs a headed goal from close range. Arsenal 1-0 Stoke.Assist on the goal came from Nicklas Bendtner.

6mins

The assistant referee signals for offside against John Carew. Wojciech Szczesny takes the free kick.

6mins

Jermaine Pennant fouled by Jack Wilshere, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Ryan Shawcross.

4mins

Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Jermaine Pennant played to the near post, clearance made by Francesc Fabregas.

3mins

Theo Walcott has an effort at goal from the edge of the area that misses to the right of the target.

2mins

Shot by Theo Walcott from deep inside the penalty area hits the post.

Match Preview

Robin van Persie and Laurent Koscielny will miss Arsenal's Barclays Premier League match with Stoke on Wednesday after picking up hamstring and back injuries respectively. Manager Arsene Wenger described the injuries as "short-term" and hopes the key duo will be fit for Sunday's Carling Cup final against Birmingham.

Johan Djourou missed the FA Cup draw with Leyton Orient with a back problem but is now fully fit and will start at the Emirates Stadium. Abou Diaby is suspended and long-term absentees Thomas Vermaelen (Achilles) and Lukasz Fabianski (shoulder) remain sidelined.

Wenger's side beat Barcelona at the Emirates Stadium last week but were brought swiftly down to earth against League One side Orient on Sunday. Nevertheless, the Gunners know that a return to winning ways against Stoke will see them close the gap on leaders Manchester United to just one point in the first match in a gruelling schedule which could see them play six times in 17 days.

Arsenal have lost three times at home this year - more than any other team in the top six - and Wenger thinks their form at the Emirates could prove decisive in their push to win their first title in seven years.

"We know we are in a strong position," the 61-year-old said.

"The players know that at home our results will have a vital importance to have a chance to win the title. The focus will be natural, this team wants to win every single game and the players are disappointed after the Leyton Orient result."

Wednesday's game will see the renewal of a rivalry which has boiled over on several occasions over the last few years. Stoke manager Tony Pulis accused Wenger of "moaning like a drain" over fixture congestion last season, while the Frenchman slammed Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross for his "horrendous" tackle which broke Aaron Ramsey's leg in March 2010.

Wenger then upped the ante by comparing Stoke's style to a rugby team this season and is aware of the visitors' physical strength with players like John Carew and Kenwyne Jones.

"What is important for us against Stoke is for us to have the ball, because the more we can have the ball then the less dangerous they can be in the air," he said.

Stoke Pulis has warned his players they face a potential hiding if they are not "switched on."

"I went to their game with Barcelona, and it was a fantastic game," said Pulis, whose side visit the Emirates Stadium for what is a re-arranged fixture that was initially postponed before Christmas due to bad weather.

"For all of Barcelona's dominance, and they were very dominant at times, Arsenal still had very good chances. Robin van Persie could have scored a hat-trick.

"Arsenal will be delighted to be 2-1 ahead and heading out for the return with a great opportunity of going through. It means the second game will be a great one. But in watching that game I can say we're not on their level, I think everybody accepts that.

"So we just have to go there and do our best, and that's what we'll do. We have to be switched on. It's a game we know will be very, very difficult, even if we play at our best. If we don't, then we're in trouble."

Although Stoke sit in a relatively comfortable 10th place in the table, they are still far from safe as they are only six points above the relegation zone. Aside from an FA Cup quarter-final tie at home to West Ham, Pulis' main concern now is ploughing through the 40-point barrier that is often viewed as the target required for safety.

With Stoke seven points shy at present, Pulis added: "I've said to the players we've a great opportunity now at the back end of this season. Although we've some very tough games in the Premier League coming up, we have to get the 40 points, that's massively important for us.

"The basis of the Premier League is that you have to get to those 40 points as quick as you can because no-one is safe. Just look at the table and some of the teams below us who have been in this league for a long time and have more experience than us.

"It shows you have no God-given right to be anywhere and accept anything other than the fact you have to get those 40 points as quickly as you can."

The Potters are likely to be missing Matthew Etherington, who has sustained a back injury understood to be linked to a defect in his jawline. Asmir Begovic will return in goal ahead of Thomas Sorensen, while Dean Whitehead is due to figure after being rested as an unused substitute for Saturday's 3-0 FA Cup fifth-round win over Brighton.

Formation:433Manager: Arsene Wenger

Arsenal

Formation: 442Manager: Tony Pulis

Stoke

  • Wojciech Szczesny
  • Bacary Sagna
  • Sebastien Squillaci
  • Johan Djourou
  • Gael Clichy
  • Francesc Fabregas
  • Alex Song
  • Jack Wilshere
  • Theo Walcott
  • Nicklas Bendtner
  • Samir Nasri
  • SUBS
  • Manuel Almunia
  • Tomas Rosicky
  • Neves Denilson
  • Andrey Arshavin
  • Emmanuel Eboue
  • Kieran Gibbs
  • Marouane Chamakh

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Match Report

Bittersweet success for Gunners Arsenal edged past Stoke and moved to within a point of Premier League leaders Manchester United but their 1-0 victory was overshadowed by injuries to Theo Walcott and Cesc Fabregas. Sebastien Squillaci's seventh-minute header gave Arsenal the victory but injuries to their key duo will be of concern with the Carling Cup final and a Champions League match against Barcelona coming up. Fabregas came off with what appeared to be a knee complaint in the first half while Walcott was carried off on a stretcher with an ankle injury after being flattened by a clumsy Dean Whitehead challenge. Much of the pre-match talk had been about how the Gunners would cope without another of their key men, Robin van Persie, who was ruled out with a hamstring injury. Arsene Wenger chose Nicklas Bendtner to lead the attack in his absence while Fabregas, Wojciech Szczesny and Samir Nasri returned after missing Sunday's disappointing draw with Leyton Orient. Tony Pulis recalled Asmir Begovic and Whitehead while Ryan Shawcross skippered the side almost a year to the day the that he broke Aaron Ramsey's leg at the Britannia Stadium. Clearly determined to put their shock FA Cup draw behind them, Arsenal came flying out of the blocks and rattled the Stoke woodwork with barely a minute gone. Fabregas slotted in Theo Walcott after some good work by Jack Wilshere, and the England winger beat Begovic at the far post but his shot rebounded off the woodwork and into the goalkeeper's hands. Walcott tore into the Stoke box again three minutes later after being played through by Bendtner but Begovic came out to smother the ball. The early pressure paid off for the home side when they took the lead. Bendtner volleyed across the box from a Wilshere corner to find Squillaci, who headed home unmarked from five yards for his first league goal of the season. Fabregas looked to be struggling with an injury and was replaced by Andrey Arshavin 14 minutes in. The Spaniard, who missed most of December with a hamstring injury, looked disappointed to have picked up a knock and will be badly missed by the Gunners if does not recover for Sunday's cup final and the Barcelona game in two weeks' time. Arsenal remained in control but played the game at a much slower pace following their captain's departure. Arshavin, who scored the winner against Barcelona last week, skipped past his marker before drawing a good save from Begovic at his near post. Szczesny had to scramble down to his right to save John Carew's 25-yard volley with Stoke's first chance of the game at the other end. The Stoke defence backed off as Arshavin raced at the defence and Shawcross, who had been booed with his every touch, hacked the Russian down 20 yards out. Nasri curled the resultant free-kick a couple of yards wide of Begovic's goal. Jonathan Walters entered the book for pulling back Walcott in the closing stages. The decision angered Pulis, who raged at referee Peter Walton and Wenger, who agreed with the referee's call, in the opposing technical area. Carew was lucky to escape a booking at the start of the second half when he appeared to push over Johan Djourou after coming in late on the tackle. The away side almost equalised a minute later when Shawcross' deflected header whistled just past Szczesny's goal. Earlier this season Wenger accused Stoke of playing like a rugby side because of their dirty tactics and he was angered by a late sliding challenge from Rory Delap on Bacary Sagna which the referee deemed not worthy of a booking. It was Pulis who was up in arms next though as a result of Gael Clichy's late sliding tackle on Jermaine Pennant, which earned the defender a yellow card. Stoke were looking much more assured in the second period and they went close when Robert Huth headed just over the bar from a Rory Delap long throw. Arsenal then went on the attack through Arshavin, who dodged a Shawcross sliding tackle to find Walcott in the box but the 21-year-old was off-balance and mis-kicked his attempt on goal. Walcott was bundled over by Whitehead on the edge of box in the 68th minute but referee Walton waved play on. The winger stayed on the ground, clearly in pain, clutching his ankle before being carried off to be replaced by Denilson. Bendtner headed wide from six yards after a Wilshere corner as Arsenal looked for a killer second goal with 20 minutes left. Then Marc Wilson clattered into substitute Marouane Chamakh to earn a booking. Pennant almost stole an equaliser in the last minute of normal time with a beautiful curling free-kick that went into Szczesny's side-netting. Wenger was infuriated to see the fourth official show there would be five minutes of injury-time but his side held the ball for almost the entire added period to ensure the Gunners held out for a crucial win.

Form Guide

    DWWWDW
  • Arsenal
  • VS
  • Stoke
  • LWLLWL

Last Meetings

  • Stoke
  • 1 - 3
  • Arsenal
  • 27/02/2010
  • Arsenal
  • 2 - 0
  • Stoke
  • 05/12/2009
  • Arsenal
  • 4 - 1
  • Stoke
  • 24/05/2009
  • Stoke
  • 2 - 1
  • Arsenal
  • 01/11/2008
  • Stoke
  • 2 - 0
  • Arsenal
  • 30/03/1985
  • Arsenal
  • 4 - 0
  • Stoke
  • 22/09/1984

Top Scorers

Arsenal

  • R van Persie 9
  • S Nasri 8
  • M Chamakh 7
  • T Walcott 7
  • A Arshavin 4
  • A Song 4
  • F Fabregas 3
  • N Bendtner 2
  • L Koscielny 2
  • B Sagna 1
  • V Diaby 1
  • J Djourou 1
  • J Wilshere 1

Stoke

  • R Huth 6
  • K Jones 5
  • R Fuller 3
  • M Etherington 2
  • D Whitehead 2
  • J Walters 2
  • R Delap 1
  • D Higginbotham 1
  • JA Carew 1
  • A Faye 1
  • M Wilson 1

Goals

Arsenal

    • Total goals 83
    • Goals per game 56
  • 5 (For) Period 0-10 mins
  • 8 (For) 1 (Against) Period 11-20 mins
  • 4 (For) 3 (Against) Period 21-30 mins
  • 5 (For) 2 (Against) Period 31-40 mins
  • 8 (For) 6 (Against) Period 41-50 mins
  • 9 (For) 3 (Against) Period 51-60 mins
  • 3 (For) 3 (Against) Period 61-70 mins
  • 5 (For) 2 (Against) Period 71-80 mins
  • 9 (For) 7 (Against) Period 81-90 mins

Stoke

    • Total goals 58
    • Goals per game 31
  • (For) 4 (Against) Period 0-10 mins
  • 1 (For) 1 (Against) Period 11-20 mins
  • 2 (For) 5 (Against) Period 21-30 mins
  • 3 (For) 7 (Against) Period 31-40 mins
  • 5 (For) 4 (Against) Period 41-50 mins
  • 4 (For) 1 (Against) Period 51-60 mins
  • 3 (For) 2 (Against) Period 61-70 mins
  • 2 (For) 4 (Against) Period 71-80 mins
  • 11 (For) 5 (Against) Period 81-90 mins

possession


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