Author: Graham Tower
Published: 11:50 19/10/2012
It’s 28 years since Norwich beat Arsenal at Carrow Road and the odds are stacked against the Canaries picking up their first home win of the season in Saturday’s Premier League clash against Arsene Wenger’s side.
Norwich are second from bottom of the league without a win in seven games and manager Chris Hughton has problems at both ends of the pitch. Leading scorer Grant Holt is looking a shadow of the player who scored 15 goals in the last Premier League campaign and the Norwich striker has received little service to help his cause. At the back, the Canaries have been error prone and shipped 17 goals, the second worst defensive record in the league.
It’s little wonder that Norwich are 11/2 (Betfred) to beat the Gunners in Saturday’s televised tea-time game. Arsenal, who were 2-1 winners here last season, are 4/7 with William Hill and the draw is 7/2 with BetVictor.
Hughton could bring back Scottish defender Steve Whittaker who has been out with an ankle injury. Whittaker would bolster a defence that can expect a busy time against Arsenal’s new look attack force.
Germany striker Lukas Podolski has settled in quickly at his new club and scored twice already this term. Olivier Giroud had come in for some stick after missing a few chances but the French striker has only started in three games. He finally broke his duck for the season against West Ham before the international break and will be out to prove winning the Ligue 1 Golden Boot with Montepellier last season was no fluke.
Santi Cazorla has been an inspiration in midfield and the Spaniard has chipped in with two goals to demonstrate the Gunners can score throughout the side. Wenger is fortunate to have plenty of attacking options with Gervinho slipping into a central attacking position to score three times this season.
Elsewhere the Gunners boss should have Jack Wilshere and Abou Diaby available, Wilshere may get a cameo having not played a senior game since June 2011.
Norwich were trounced 5-2 by Liverpool in their last game at Carrow Road and with Arsenal scoring three in their last two games, it would be fair to expect goals on Saturday.
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