Arsenal V Manchester City
It could be a thriller at the Emirates. Picture - Reuters.

Arsenal will host Manchester City at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday in the quarterfinals of the Caring Cup.

The game marks the first time Samir Nasri returns to Arsenal since his move to Man City during the summer transfer window. How the Emirates Stadium reacts to the player is anybody's guess, but it is sure to add to the atmosphere.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger urged the supporters not to abuse Nasri on his return.

"I hope Samir gets a good reception," he said. "I want every player who played for us to be respected when they come back. Samir improved tremendously with us. He has developed fantastically well from a non-scoring player to a guy who can make a decision."

Both teams are expected to rotate their squads, with Wenger stating that his captain, Robin Van Persie, was in dire need of rest.

"We have a few players on the edge like Van Persie and Walcott, who had a hamstring alert, and Aaron Ramsey. We'll have to see how they respond to 24 hours of rest.

"It will be easier for you to pick the Man City team because you can look in the stand and on the bench (against Liverpool) and you will see who plays on Tuesday. We have red alerts on a few players but I will pick as strong a team as I can."

Manchester City come to this game on the back of a hard-fought 1-1 draw at Liverpool, on Sunday. With just a day's break before taking on Arsenal, manager Roberto Mancini blasted the Football League and the Premier League for their scheduling of the Carling Cup fixtures.

"We will change all the team because this is an incredible situation," the Italian said. "For this reason the national team arrives at European Championships and World Cups and they are dying - they do not have time to recover.

"To play in two days, two games like this, after a Champions League game, is incredible. I think the players should say something about this. For the players it is important to play, but it is important also to recover, a minimum three days between one game and another.''

Despite both sides set to make changes to their starting team, such is the strength in depth assembled by Man City that Arsenal will have a tough time against City's so called 'second-string' team.

However, with a Carling Cup semifinal, and a chance to play at Wembley in the final, at stake, it is sure to be a cracker.

Team News

Arsenal are expected to rest regular starters such as Robin van Persie, Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Abou Diaby, meaning Park Ju-young and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be amongst those aiming to make their mark.

Manchester City will be without Mario Balotelli and Gareth Barry, both of whom are suspended, while fit-again Owen Hargreaves is expected to feature along with Kolo Toure and Stefan Savic.


This has all the makings of a thriller. Expect a high intensity, end-to-end battle, especially in the second half. But City's strength in depth should see them through against an Arsenal side who can't quite match their opponent's quality.

Arsenal 1-3 Man City