Arsenal v Wolves
There’s no escaping the disappointment of letting a 4-0 half-time lead slip but it was certainly tempered by Man United’s loss to Wolves. Though some may see it as an opportunity missed, the more optimistic will point out that the gap to the top is now one point less than it was. With the Manchester derby this weekend, at least one of Arsenal’s title rivals will be dropping points, so there’s an opportunity to close the gap above or create one below.
Having just beaten United, Wolves will come to Emirates Stadium with an injection of confidence and, although they were beaten 2-0 in the reverse fixture at Molineux, they were far from outclassed in that game. Arsenal’s win that day had as much to do with Lukasz Fabianski’s goalkeeping as it did Marouane Chamakh’s finishing.
Mick McCarthy’s side have had something of a knack of beating the bigger teams this season, with wins over Chelsea, Liverpool and both Manchester teams. However, only one of those wins was away from home and that was at Anfield when Liverpool were probably at their worst. As scrappy as they’ve been in nearly all their contests this season, away from home they’ve picked up just four points from 12 games, scoring a Premier League low of nine goals. They’ve also failed to string two consecutive wins together all season.
Arsenal midfielder Abou Diaby begins a three-match suspension following his sending off at Newcastle last weekend.
Alex Song and Johan Djourou should both overcome injuries, but Tomas Rosicky is out with a groin problem.
Wolves manager Mick McCarthy could field the starting XI that ended Manchester United's unbeaten record.
Loan signing Jamie O'Hara is likely to retain his place, although Stephen Hunt could overcome a calf strain in time to return to the squad.
Watch highlights on Match of the Day; listen on BBC Radio 5 live and local radio; text commentary on BBC Sport website and Guardian website.
Read the tactical analysis post-game at http://www.arsenalreport.com/