Tuesday 22 October 2019

Gunners admit Tube strike could threaten Wolves clash

Arsenal yesterday became the first London club to signal their home St Stephen's Day fixture was under threat from proposed industrial action that would hit Tube services in the capital.

The club said that they were "monitoring the situation" regarding the proposed London Underground strike which could affect their game against Wolves on Monday. A 24-hour strike is being threatened as well as three further days over the next month.

Arsene Wenger may have conceded the Premier League title after Sunday's 1-0 defeat at leaders Manchester City extended the deficit to 12 points, but the signs are more encouraging that this defeat will not lead to a decline.

A reshuffled back four coped admirably in the main at Eastlands, while marginal refereeing decisions -- an offside flag and a penalty claim -- went against Arsenal and their spirit was a far cry from what it was when they last visited Manchester, when they collapsed 8-2 at Old Trafford in August.


"The performances have shown that we are much more confident and certainly this game will not take the confidence away from us," said goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny after Arsenal had lost in the league for the first time in nine matches.

"We have Villa on Wednesday and then a reasonably easy run over Christmas and the new year so we are confident we can get the results.

"We made some quality signings after the poor start to the season that brought the spirit back to the dressing-room. I believe we can go very far in all competitions."

Fixtures against Villa, Wolves and QPR take Arsenal into the new year before they travel to Fulham on January 2.

Each challenge must be negotiated without their defender Johan Djourou, who is expected to be unavailable for up to three weeks with a groin problem.

Injuries are mounting and compounded against Villa by a one-match suspension for Alex Song, who picked up a fifth booking of the campaign in the City clash.

Irish Independent

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