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Arsenal Team News: Injuries, suspensions and line-up vs Stoke City

Goal.com logo Goal.com 12-05-2017

Arsenal's hopes of securing a top four spot are reliant on either Liverpool or Manchester City slipping up in their final games of the season but the impossible could become closer to possible if the Gunners beat Stoke on Saturday. The bet365 Stadium has traditionally been a tricky away trip for Arsene Wenger's men and he is well aware that anything other than a victory won't be good enough if Arsenal want to secure the much-coveted and talked about top four spot. “Stoke have improved their technical level over the past two or three years," he said. "Technically they can compete with everybody, so these players on their day can be creative, they can be incisive, they can create goal chances. We know that.” Wenger's side have failed to score in three of their last four Premier League visits to Stoke but after an improved performance in the 2-0 win over Southampton in midweek, they will be confident of continuing from where they left off in the league encounter.

ARSENAL INJURIES

Laurent Koscielny is unlikely to be fit in time after his short spell on the sidelines with a calf issue while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will sit out the game against Stoke, although he should be fit in time for the FA Cup final. "He’s [Koscielny] got a small chance," said Wenger. "He was not far. He practised on Tuesday but it was risky to play him at Southampton."

French youngster Jeff Reine-Adelaide is ruled out until the end of the season with an ankle injury, with Santi Cazorla another long-term absentee.

ARSENAL SUSPENSIONS

Arsenal have no players suspended for this match.

ARSENAL POTENTIAL STARTING LINE-UP

Hector Bellerin will start in the right wing back role with Chamberlain injured, paving the way for the Spaniard to get a run of games under his belt before the season ends. Wenger questions Chelsea style

Wenger is likely to stick with three at the back as Shkodran Mustafi, Rob Holding and Nacho Monreal will all continue in defence. In the middle, Granit Xhaka and Aaron Ramsey look likely to continue their blossoming partnership and Danny Welbeck could start upfront following his recent good form.

STOKE DOSSIER

Stoke's last league victory was against Hull City almost a month ago and they will be aware that a win over Arsenal would almost extingiush the Gunners' top four hopes. Ozil makes child's dream come true

Long-term absentees Ibrahim Afellay and Stephen Ireland remain out injured but Saido Berahino could be involved after being on the sidelines with illness recently.

Peter Crouch is their top scorer with 8 goals this season.

BEST OPTA MATCH FACTS

Stoke have only lost one of their eight home Premier League games against Arsenal (W4 D3).

The Gunners' 12.5% win percentage (one win in eight) away at Stoke is their joint-second worst in the Premier League era (level with Sheffield Wednesday, one win in eight); they only have a worse win record at Manchester United (3 wins in 25, 12%)

Arsenal have failed to score in three of their last four Premier League visit to the bet365 Stadium, with two of those games ending goalless.

Peter Crouch has eight Premier League goals against Arsenal, his joint favourite opponent in the division (also Blackburn - 8).

Arsene Wenger has been on the losing side eight times in 26 games as Arsenal manager against Mark Hughes (all competitions) - the only manager he's lost against more with the Gunners is Sir Alex Ferguson (22).

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Arsenal haven't lost any of their last eight away league games in May (W5 D3) - the last side to beat them was Stoke in 2011.

TV COVERAGE & KICK-OFF TIME

Kick-off is at 17:30 BST on Saturday, 13 May and the match is being broacast live on Sky Sports 1 in the UK.

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