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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Gunners set sights on Chelsea

Arsenal defender Bacary Sagna knows this weekend's clash with Chelsea is set to be a massive test of their Premier League title credentials, so he has called for his colleagues to step up at Stamford Bridge.

The Gunners currently trail the early leaders by six points and will be looking to bounce back from their embarrassing home defeat to West Brom at the Emirates last weekend.

Both Chelsea and Arsenal recovered from losses in the league to win their Champions League ties on Tuesday, but now the focus switches to Sunday's game and Sagna has stated the tests keep coming for Arsene Wenger's side. The Premier League odds certainly suggest they're in for a tough time.

Arsenal have not won a trophy for five years, and have not had their hands on the Premier League trophy for six, so this season is a crunch one for their French manager. He knows fans may start to get disconcerted if success does not seem on the horizon.

Sagna pointed out "the season is long" and it is no time to panic, even if Arsenal lose to Chelsea and slip back even further in the Premier League title battle.
"Now we need to stay focused and look forward to the next game, and we have to make something at Chelsea. We have to play our football," the Frenchman said.

"We know we have the quality to beat them. It will be an open game, but it will be about us, not them."

It remains to be seen if Manuel Almunia will be able to play against Chelsea, after he picked up an elbow injury in the West Brom game and missed the Champions League win over Partizan Belgrade in a result which was reflected in the football odds.

If the Spaniard fails to recover then Lukasz Fabianski will play in net. The Pole has been much derided for a host of gaffes but was praised by Wenger after the win in Serbia. However many Arsenal fans are still not convinced and will worry if he is likely to drop a clanger in a game that could in the end decide their Premier League title fate.

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