Preview: Middlesbrough vs Arsenal
Arsenal expect to have captain Cesc Fabregas (knee) back along with several other first-team players.
Full-back Gael Clichy (hamstring), Robin van Persie (thigh) and the rested Emmanuel Adebayor should be available again along with defender Bacary Sagna.
Arsene Wenger on resting players for the midweek Champions League defeat in Porto:
“I believe we have come back into some consistency – we have beaten Chelsea and Wigan, also Kiev, and that the Porto result was a special game.
“When you get to a position where you can protect your Premier League game a bit, then you do it.
“In this case it was very important and was why we made that choice (against Porto). Hopefully it will pay off.”
HEAD TO HEAD
Three of the last four games between Middlesbrough and Arsenal were 1-1 draws.
Middlesbrough are unbeaten in four Premier League matches against Arsenal; they won one and drawn three since being hammered 7-0 by the Gunners in North London on 14 January 2006.
That 7-0 victory was a club record equalling biggest home win in the Premier League for Arsenal. Their record Premier League away victory was also against Middlesbrough; 1-6 at the Riverside on 24 April 1999.
Arsenal’s most recent league victory on Teesside was 0-1 on 9 April 2005 when Robert Pires got the winner. It was their fifth successive maximum on Middlesbrough turf.