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Match Previews

PREVIEW: Arsenal v Coventry City

24 January 2014

Read our match preview ahead of the trip to the Emirates in the fourth round of the FA Cup...

Venue: Emirates
Date: Friday, January 24th
Kick-off: 7.45pm
Competition: F.A Cup

Coventry City are aiming to cause a cup upset ahead of their trip to North London on Friday evening.

After Franck Moussa’s stunning leveler away at Deepdale last Saturday, Steven Pressley’s men will be hoping to cause problems away at current Premier League title challengers Arsenal.

City, who are on a current run of just one loss in the last 11 games, are facing an Arsenal side who are also in impressive shape after going unbeaten in their last seven games in all competitions.

The Sky Blue army will be hoping to repeat their 1987 FA Cup heroics which seen them beat Arsenal’s North London neighbours Tottenham Hotspur 3-2 in the final at Wembley.

Arsene Wenger’s side currently sit at the top of the Barclays Premier League, dropping points in only six of their fixtures so far this season.

Overall, this campaign they have only lost three times. However, they have only managed to beat one of the current top four sides so far this season, with their last defeat coming from Manchester City, losing 6-3 at the Etihad.

In the third round of the FA Cup, Arsenal beat arch-rivals Tottenham 2-0 at the Emirates. Goals from Santi Carzola, who fired the Gunners into the lead in the 32nd minute and Tomas Rosicky, who doubled the lead just after the hour mark with a cheeky chip. However, with a bitter change of luck, Theo Walcott was stretchered off with nine minutes to go due to a knee injury which will force him out for up to six months.

Arsenal line up v Tottenham Hotspur: Fabianski, Sagna, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Monreal, Arteta, Rosicky, Wilshere, Cazola, Wallcott, Gnabry.

Mesut Ozil
The German maestro cost the Gunners £42,500,000 back in September from Real Madrid. So far this season he has managed four goals and seven assists in 17 Premier League appearances for the Gunners.

Ozil started his career at Schalke before moving to Werder Bremen, making 79 appearances, netting 13 goals. It was during his time at Bremen where Ozil begin to make his name as the King of assists. 

STAT: From 2008 to 2013, the German international made 72 assists and created 492 chances which is the best record in Europe.

In the summer of 2010, he made a £12,500,000 move to La Liga giants Real Madrid. 

In his time at the Bernabeu, the 25-year old enjoyed a successful spell, winning both the Copa Del Ray and the La Liga title, making 119 appearances, managing 24 goals.

Coventry and Arsenal have played each other 75 times in 47 years. 

The first time these clubs played each other was at Highbury in the League which ended in a 1-1 draw in 1967. In the league, Arsenal have won 42 times to Coventry’s fourteen.  

When the two sides last played each other, Arsenal came out with a 6-1 victory at the Emirates in the League Cup in 2012.

Last five meetings

Arsenal 6-1 Coventry, Capital One Cup, 26/09/12
Coventry 0-1 Arsenal, Premiership, 03/02/01
Arsenal 2-1 Coventry, Premiership, 16/09/00
Arsenal 3-0 Coventry, Premiership, 26/03/00
Coventry 3-2 Arsenal, Premiership, 26/12/99

Key Moments

City’s record against the Gunners may show the London side to be the dominant force in the fixture, but it has thrown up the odd Sky Blue day.

The Sky Blues won away at Arsenal when former City striker Micky Quinn scored all three goals at Highbury in the opening game of the season as Coventry recorded a memorable 3-0 victory in August 1993.

STAT: Quinn’s treble remains the last time any player has scored a hat-trick against the Gunners at Arsenal.

CCFC Starting XI -  S Robson , D Rennie, J Williams, P Babb, P Ndlovu, P Atherton, R Wegerle, J Gould, M Quinn (pen 34,62, 65), S Flynn, T Sheridan

Rohan Ricketts

The Clapham-born Rohan Ricketts started his career at Arsenal, winning two FA Youth Cups in 2000 and 2001, but transferred to rivals Tottenham in 2002. 

Two years later, the attacking midfield player made a loan move to the Sky Blues, where he made six appearances.

During the 2004/05 season, he went on loan to Wolverhampton Wanderers and signed a permanent deal at the Molineux at the end of the season. After a two-year spell in Black County, he went to enjoy spells at a range of clubs around the world including Toronto in Canada, Dacia Chisinau in Romania and Dempo in India.

His most recent club was Ecuadorian side Depotivo Quevedo, who he signed for in January 2013. However, after nine appearances the club and relegation to the Ecuadorian Serie B, he had terminated his contract in the July.

Ricketts is set to play in his ninth country in a globe-trotting career having sealed a move to BC Bangkok in Thailand this week.

Steven Hughes

Steven Hughes started his career at Arsenal in 1995, making 76 senior appearances, including 16 appearances in the 1997-98 season when Arsenal won the Premier League title. 

In 2000, Hughes moved to Everton for £3 million, before being released a year later. He then had stints at Watford and Charlton Athletic before his move to the Sky Blues in 2004.

Hughes made over 150 appearances for the club, scoring eight goals and captaining the side during his time with the club.

The Sky Blues released him in 2008, where he then joined Walsall and after a year at the Bescot Stadium, the midfielder retired from football.

Jeff Blockley

Former English defender Jeff Blockley began his career at Coventry City in 1968, where he played 146 games for the club over four seasons at centre half. 

He was then signed by Arsenal for a fee of £200,000 in 1972 but failed to build a positive relationship with the supporters, due to him being blamed for the club’s FA Cup exit in a semi-final against Sunderland.

In 1975, Blockley was sold to Leicester, helping rescue the side from relegation that season. He later went on to play for Notts County and Gloucester City before retiring in 1982.

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