Swansea City v Arsenal - Five players under the spotlight

Liberty Stadium 2

This week’s Saturday night football sees Arsenal travel to the Liberty Stadium to take on Michael Laudrup’s Swansea City.

The league leaders will be looking to continue their good run of form which as seen them string together eight wins in a row since losing to Aston Villa on the opening day.

Swansea on the other hand have had a mixed start to the season but have shown some improvement in the past few games, picking up a win against Crystal Palace and a draw at home to Liverpool.

This will be a good contest with both teams trying to play good football. I have a feeling that Arsenal’s momentum and good away record will be the decisive factor in this game.

I expect Arsenal to retain their position at the top of the Premier League.

Odds: Swansea City 12/5, Draw 5/2, Arsenal 13/10

Swansea 0 – 2 Arsenal – March 16th 2013, The Liberty Stadium

After a damaging loss away to rivals Tottenham, Arsenal bounced back in style to earn a vital three points in South Wales. This result the Gunners kicked off their unbeaten run, which saw them snatch from Spurs on the last day of the season. Swansea fought hard the whole game but late goals from Nacho Monreal and Gervinho sealed the victory for Arsene Wenger’s team.

Five players to watch on Saturday:

Aaron Ramsey

He is in the form of his life at the moment, he has already scored six goals so far this season including another goal in the win against Stoke last weekend. Arsenal will be relying on him to help the team take the three points and stay close to the summit of the Premier League table. He has become such an important part of the squad and he has made it very hard for Arsene Wenger to drop him for any game.

Wojciech Szczesny

The Polish goalkeeper has come under some criticism of late but he is visibly improving his play between the posts for Arsenal. He will look to continue his impressive form as he tries to keep the Swansea attack at bay on Saturday evening. The Arsenal defence as a whole has looked more solid over the past few weeks and he has played a big role in that.

Ashley Williams

Swansea’s captain was heavily linked with Arsenal throughout the summer transfer window and it will be interesting to see how he performs against the team he could have been playing for. Williams has had a slow start to the season, which wasn’t helped by Robin van Persie running ragged on opening day. He will have his hands full with in form striker Olivier Giroud leading the line for Arsenal.

Michu

Michu scored three goals in four games against Arsenal last season, his first in English football, so the Gunners will have to watch out for him during the match otherwise he can make them pay once again. He seems to have found his scoring touch again after going a few games without a goal, his growing partnership with Wilfried Bony will be a concern for Arsenal.

Serge Gnabry

The young German winger made his league debut for the club last weekend against Stoke after Theo Walcott was ruled out with an abdomen injury. The only issue is that he played the full 120 minutes in Arsenal's Carling Cup victory over West Brom on Wednesday. Wenger doesn’t have many options due to injuries so Gnabry might be called into action once again. He will have the chance to stake a claim for a first team place.

image: © cpjobling

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