Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has named his customary youthful League Cup squad mixed with experience ahead of his side’s clash with struggling League One side Coventry City at what is expected to be a sold-out Emirates Stadium.
Wenger has stressed his desire to do well in the competition despite the pain the Gunners suffered in the 2011 League Cup final, where their surprise defeat to Birmingham precipitated the club’s exit from the Champions League, FA Cup and Premier League title race.
Not one of the team that started their impressive 1-1 draw at Manchester City on Sunday is expected to start, with the youthful likes of goalkeeper Damian Martinez, defenders Nico Yennaris, Martin Angha and Hector Bellerin, as well as midfielders Serge Gnabry and Thomas Eisfield all named in the squad.
Elsewhere, experience is provided in the shape of fringe first team members Johan Djourou, Andre Santos, Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Andrei Arshavin and Marouane Chamakh while Emmanuel Frimpong could make his return from a cruciate ligament injury suffered on loan at Wolves at the beginning of this year. French striker Olivier Giroud may be given the opportunity to score his first goal for the club against the League One strugglers. The game has come too soon for Jack Wilshere, despite his return to first-team training last week.
As for Coventry, new manager Mark Robins is unable to field on-loan Arsenal midfielder Conor Henderson while striker David McGoldrick is cup-tied. Midfielder James Bailey, who is on-loan from Derby could feature. Fellow new signing Franck Moussa, who arrived at the Ricoh Arena on a free transfer within days of Robins’ arrival as manager last week, could also make his first appearance for the Sky Blues.
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