Arsenal vs Reading Preview, Team News, Likely Line-ups & Predicted Score
Arsenal welcome relegation-threatened Reading to the Emirates on Saturday afternoon. Here’s a preview with team news, line-ups and predicted score for the game.
Premier League action gets back underway this weekend after the two-week international break and Arsenal welcome relegation-threatened Reading to the Emirates on Saturday afternoon.
The ‘Interlull’ came at a bad time for us in truth. Tottenham had lost their last two games to Liverpool and Fulham and we’d just started to pick up a head of steam after beating Bayern Munich and Swansea, so it would have been interesting to see how things went if the international break hadn’t come around.
The results leave us four points off fourth-place with a game in hand and with Spurs facing a tricky trip to the Liberty this weekend, victory over Reading is vital to maintain the pressure and hopefully take advantage of another slip from our rivals.
We’ll be up against a Reading side who’ve just installed Nigel Adkins as manager after the sacking of Brian McDermott so hopefully we don’t succumb to ‘New Manager Syndrome’.
The visitors sit 19th in the table and seven points from safety while we’ve won all 11 of our previous meetings with the Royals, so understandably we’re strong favourites to win the game.
We’ve been hit with some bad injury news ahead of the game. Jack Wilshere is ruled out after being given more time to recover from an ankle injury while Theo Walcott picked up a thigh injury while away with England. Both men are expected back to face WBA next week though.
Midfielder Abou Diaby has been ruled out for up to nine months with anterior cruciate ligament damage to his left knee. It’s devastating news for the lad but I really can’t see any way back for him now at Arsenal. He needs to move on as soon as he’s fit in my opinion.
Kieran Gibbs is also a doubt after being struck down with sickness so Nacho Monreal is on standby to step start. Lukas Podolski and Bacary Sagna are both back in contention, although I’d like to see Carl Jenkinson retain his place at right back.
The big question marks will be whether Arsene Wenger decides to recall either Wojciech Szczesny or Thomas Vermaelen. Both have been dropped for the last two games and with clean sheets being recorded in both, it would be hard to argue if the boss stuck with Lukasz Fabianski and Laurent Koscielny.
New Reading boss Nigel Adkins is able to call upon the services of Pavel Pogrebnyak after the striker completed his three-match ban. Former Gunner Stuart Taylor is expected to start in place of the injured Adam Federici in goal, while Jimmy Kebe and Jason Roberts are also on the sidelines.
With 19 goals shared in our two meetings with Reading this season, it’s fair to say we should expect goals on Saturday. Despite some injury worries, Arsenal are still capable of putting out a strong team and one that should see-off the visitors with ease as long as we put in a professional display. Arsenal 3-1 Reading
What would be your starting eleven and whats your predicted score for the game? Get involved in the comments section below.
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