Live coverage of Cardiff City v Arsenal here

Arsenal Wilshere Monreal Ramsey
Arsenal players celebrate Jack Wilshere's goal against Marseille in the Champions League, November 26. Reuters

Cardiff City at home are a force to reckon with. They have taken four points from a possible six against the Manchester clubs in the English Premier League this season in the fortress that is the Cardiff City Stadium, and when league leaders Arsenal come to visit on Saturday, another one of those big scalps will be glowing through their minds.

For Arsenal, with Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Tottenham and Chelsea all playing only on Sunday, this is the perfect opportunity to put a little more daylight between themselves and the rest of the pack, and Arsene Wenger will want to witness pictures of Cardiff's players, with their shoulders slumped, walking like zombies at the end of the final whistle.

The Gunners came out of a tough test at home against Southampton quite well last weekend, even if they were aided by a calamitous error, which will no doubt be played over and over again for many years to come, from goalkeeper Artur Boruc.

The match against Marseille also ended with the same 2-0 scoreline, which puts Arsenal with a rather large foot on the Champions League last 16 door.

Arsenal lead the Premier League table by four points from Liverpool and Chelsea at the moment, and a nice yawning seven-point gap going into Sunday's fixtures is something that will crack open that smile on Wenger's face.

"They look to have good solidarity, good togetherness [and] fantastic support as well," Wenger said of Cardiff, who beat Manchester City earlier this season before pulling off an impressive 2-2 draw against Manchester United last weekend. "They are all on the same wavelength in the team and are very efficient at home on set-pieces.

"Even on Sunday [against United] when they were 2-1 down against Man United, many teams could have thought 'OK, it's Man United, we will not come back.'

"But you always had the feeling that they don't give up. You could feel that they would come back. They have that special attitude and belief in the side, and that makes them dangerous."

Cardiff players celebrate their equaliser against Manchester United. Reuters

Arsenal themselves have shown great spirit this season, with the players quite evidently enjoying themselves and each others' success on the pitch. Jack Wilshere got his scoring boots on against Marseille in midweek, scoring a sumptuous first goal before completing his brace in the second half.

If Wilshere starts chipping in regularly with goals as well, all it does is make Arsenal even more dangerous, with Olivier Giroud, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla also all capable of scoring at the sniff of a chance. Add the returning Theo Walcott, and the magical powers of Tomas Rosicky, and Arsenal really do have a seriously potent attacking force - an attacking force which will need to be at their best to stop Cardiff, 15th with 13 points from 12 matches, from getting anything out of the game.

Team news: Cardiff manager Malky Mackay has a full squad to choose from with summer signing Andreas Cornelius making his return from injury against Manchester United last weekend.

Kieran Gibbs has recovered from the illness that kept him out of the Champions League tie in midweek and Arsenal do not have any fresh injury concerns from the Marseille game, meaning long-term injury worries Lukas Podolski, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Yaya Sanogo and Abou Diaby are the only ones missing out.

Key men: Cardiff: Fraizer Campbell was a constant thorn in the Manchester United side, with his forward play causing all sorts of problems to the away team's defence. Campbell also showed he has got goals in him with a timely strike on Sunday, and the former United man will ask a lot of questions to the Arsenal back-four. Also much will depend on Chile international Gary Medel and how much play he can break up in the middle of the park to stop the Gunners playmakers from dictating the game.

Arsenal: Everyone has been concerned by the lack of form shown by Ozil over the past few weeks, and the German will want to silence his doubters pretty quickly with a performance that will have all and sundry watching the match, including the Cardiff faithful, oohing and aahing with every touch. Ramsey will also raring to go against his former side.

Where to Watch Live

The game is scheduled for an 8.30 pm IST start with live coverage on Star Sports 4 and Star Sports HD2. You can also catch the match via live streaming by clicking HERE. To catch the game courtesy live stream in the U.S., click HERE. Viewers in North Africa and the Middle East click HERE.

Expected lineups: Cardiff: Marshall; Theophile-Catherine, Caulker, Turner, Taylor; Medel, Whittingham; Cowie, Mutch, Odemwingie; Campbell.

Arsenal: Szczesny; Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs; Arteta, Ramsey; Wilshere, Ozil, Cazorla; Giroud.

Prediction: 4-2 to Arsenal

Quick Links