Premier League preview - Arsenal v Norwich City
PUBLISHED: 18:14 04 May 2012
Team news, the player to watch, battle of the day, referee and betting for the Premier League clash between Arsenal and Norwich City at 12.45pm on Saturday.
• Norwich City team news:
Defender Adam Drury (groin) is ruled out after suffering an injury early in last weekend’s home defeat to Liverpool. The experienced left-back has an outside chance of being fit for the finale against Aston Villa. Centre back Zak Whitbread (calf) joins fellow defenders Dani Ayala (knee) and Marc Tierney (groin) on the sidelines for the rest of the season after Paul Lambert ruled out the American at his pre-match press call.
Subs (from): Steer, Lappin, Barnett, Crofts, Johnson, Pilkington, Vaughan, Morison, Jackson, Wilbraham.
• Arsenal team news:
Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby is ruled out with a calf problem. South Korea forward Park Ju-young will be the only addition to the squad from last week’s 1-1 Premier League draw at Stoke. Theo Walcott (hamstring) remains sidelined while Mikel Arteta (ankle) is out for the remainder of the season along with Jack Wilshere (ankle) and German centre-back Per Mertesacker (ankle).
Subs (from): Fabianski, Santos, Squillaci, Coquelin, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Chamakh.
Arsene Wenger The Frenchman has overseen a cultural revolution in his 16-year spell with the club. Wenger’s best sides have been feted for their trophy success and aesthetically pleasing style of football. The ‘Invincibles’ team of Thierry Henry went the entire 2003/04 league campaign unbeaten - a feat last achieved by Preston in 1889. In total, he has won three titles and finished runner-up on five other occasions as well as won four FA Cups and finished runner-up in both the Champions League and the old Uefa Cup. The fixture against Norwich City marks his 900th match in charge of the Gunners.
• One to watch:
The Welsh captain was a key figure in Arsenal’s earlier season Premier League win at Carrow Road as he looked to re-ignite a blossoming career temporarily cut short by a sickening broken leg injury at Stoke in February 2010. The 21-year-old reportedly had his pick of the Gunners and Manchester United when Cardiff decided to cash in on the £5m teenager after he had become the youngest Bluebirds’ senior debutant since John Toshack. Ramsey helped the Welsh outfit reach the 2008 FA Cup final before a move to north London. Was also named his country’s youngester senior international captain when he led the side out against England in March 2011.
Anthony Taylor (Manchester)
Booked four Norwich players in two assignments this season – latterly City’s 2-1 Premier League defeat at Fulham in late March. Shown 101 yellow and eight red cards in his 33 appointments.
Arsenal 1/4, Norwich 11/1, draw 9/2.
First scorer: City: Holt 10/1, Morison 11/1, Vaughan, Jackson, Wilbraham 14/1, Howson 16/1.
Arsenal: van Persie 2/1, Chamakh 5/1, Gervinho, Oxlade-Chamberlain 7/1.
No goalscorer: 12/1.
• Battle of the day:
John Ruddy v Robin van Persie
City’s number one has had to endure a torrid end to an otherwise successful campaign with a series of stunning goals from some of the best frontmen in the business. Ruddy will need to be at his very best again. Robin van Persie has enjoyed a phenomenally successful campaign in front of goal that has also brought individual accolades from his peers. The striker’s finishing was also the difference at Carrow Road.