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Speaking in his various press conferences ahead of tonight’s League Cup quarter-final against Bradford, Arsene Wenger has confirmed that he will be taking a strong squad to the Valley Parade. The Capital One Cup represents a good opportunity for silverware, and we have nearly a week before our next Premier League game against Reading.
However, I am sure that there will still be a few first-team regulars who will be rested. Mikel Arteta and Santi Cazorla are probably the most likely, while there are a number of other players who will be missing through injury.
“We are in the quarter-final and we have an opportunity to go through. We want to take it.”
“We will have an experienced squad at Bradford. We have a good recovery time ahead of the game at Reading on Monday. So we can use the players we want to use.”
Predicted Starting XI
Arsene Wenger has a fantastic record in Cup competitions against opposition from the lower leagues, and with more than 60 league places separating Arsenal and Bradford I am sure that Wenger will go for the right balance of experience and youth. The team will probably not be too different from that which played against Olympiacos last week.
Thomas Eisfeld and Jernade Meade both impressed in the 7-5 win over Reading and deserve a place in the starting XI. We will still be able to have players like Arshavin, Podolski and maybe Arteta or Cazorla on the bench if really necessary, as well as players like Serge Gnabry and Chuba Akpom. Vermaelen and Mertesacker will probably continue at centre-back. I just don’t think that Squillaci will get a second game in a week.