Gunners Search For Silverware Continues

Image source
Theo Walcott posted a hat-trick against Newcastle at the end of 2012. Image courtesy of
Arsene Wenger and Arsenal’s title drought has almost stretched to eight years, and realistically, the club’s best hope this season is so start a run in the FA Cup. 18 points behind Manchester United in the Premier League, the Gunners are next to no hope of lifting the EPL trophy, although they’re still alive in the Champions League with a round of 16 match-up against Bayern Munich to come.

In an effort to end his quest for silverware, Wenger named his strongest side possible for the League Cup quarter-final against Bradford in mid-December. It made little difference as the giant-killing Bantams continued their amazing run by winning 3-2 on penalties. Going on that form, you would expect the Frenchman to send close to his best quality outfit on to the park at Liberty Stadium. The Gunners’ next Premier League fixture is against Manchester City on January 13, so they will have plenty of time to recover. Wenger has a love affair with the FA Cup having guided his side to four wins at Wembley throughout his tenure in west London.

Progressing beyond the third round of the Cup will be easier said than done, though, with Wenger’s side facing a difficult trip to Swansea on Monday morning (AEDT). The draw was complete not long after the Swans beat Arsenal 2-0 in the only clash between the teams this season so far. The match has evoked memories in south Wales of Arsenal’s previous FA Cup visit back in 1968 which drew a then record crowd of over 32,000 as the visiting side scraped home with a 1-0 win.

The Gunners had won four on the bounce before their 1-1 draw with Southampton at the weekend, and they only escaped with a point thanks to an own goal. Theo Walcott slotted home a hat-trick in his previous start against Newcastle, but failed to fire against his former side from the south coast of England, and there remains plenty of rumours about other top European teams preparing to swoop on the talented international during the transfer window.

Swansea has only lost twice in the league this season at home. The Swans have posted three wins and six draws at Liberty Stadium, although they could only muster a 2-2 stalemate against struggling Aston Villa at the weekend. Seven of the eleven EPL games there this season have finished with over 2.5 goals .

Click here to bet on FA Cup matches