Birmingham v Arsenal preview
By Adam Marshall
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Ray Parlour, Patrick Vieira, Lauren and Martin Keown are all banned leaving Arsene Wenger with no option but to reshuffle his defence.
Justin Hoyte is tipped to be drafted in at right back, although Kolo Toure could play in that role, but Gilberto Silva will not be risked following his international exertions with Brazil.
Matthew Upson will be aiming to show Wenger what he is missing as he plays in defence for Birmingham, but there is no Christophe Dugarry after the flamboyant Frenchman sustained a knee injury against Wolves.
David Dunn may be a surprise choice to play in an advanced role alongside Mikael Forssell, despite the claims of Stern John and Clinton Morrison.
Opta Stat: The only teams to score at St Andrews this season have been from London - Charlton and Fulham.
Opta Stat: Arsenal are unbeaten in their last 23 Premiership matches against teams from the Midlands.
|Opta Index||Birmingham City||Arsenal|
|Attacking|| || |
|Ave Goals per game||0.92||2.08|
|Goals to Shots %||11%||17%|
|Passes|| || |
|Pass Completion %||68%||80%|
|Defending|| || |
|Tackle Success Rate %||68%||73%|
|Ave goals conceded per game||0.67||0.83|
|Discipline|| || |