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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Birmingham City vs. Arsenal

Wembley Stadium


Live BBC1

On Sky

Carling Cup Final Preview

The long wait for some silverware for the Birmingham City trophy cabinet could be over very soon. All Blues have to do is beat Arsenal in the Carling Cup.

It's possible...Is'nt it?

Vital Quotes:

Alex McLeish: "The fans have gone a long time without silverware and we will try to make those fans proud on Sunday."

Arsene Wenger: "What is important is not what happened in the last five years, but what we can do now,"

(BBC Sport.)

Birmingham City Team News:

Alexander Hleb is a bit of a worry for Birmingham City.

Blues are keeping a close eye on the former Arsenal player after he suffered a knee injury during the game with Sheffield Wednesday in the FA Cup last weekend.

Hleb was assessed as having severe bruising after having a scan and now it will be touch and go as to whether he is fit enough to play a part in the game against his old side.

Defender Martin Jiranek missed the game against the Owls with a thigh injury, but he is back and ready for action along with striker Cameron Jerome who suffered an ankle injury in the same game.

David Bentley and Curtis Davies are cup-tied.

Player to watch: Nikola Zigic

He can scare Arsenal when in the box.

Arsenal Team News:

Cesc Fabregas is ruled out with injury for Arsenal, along with England winger Theo Walcott.

Dutch striker Robin van Persie will return from injury and is likely to captain the Gunners, while Laurent Koscielny and Abou Diaby are also likely to return.

Player to watch: Robin van Persie

Always likely to get that shot in on goal, even when closely marked.

Match Facts & Stats

The Gunners have scored 13 times and conceded twice in their five League Cup games this season.

Arsenal have lost four of their previous six League Cup finals.

Arsene Wenger has taken charge of eight major cup finals as Arsenal manager, winning four. He has lost the last two (against Barcelona in the 2006 Champions League final and Chelsea in the 2007 Carling Cup final).

Blues have not kept a single clean sheet in their last nine League Cup matches, conceding a total of 13 goals.

Six of the eight Premier League goals Blues have scored against Arsenal have come via set-pieces. Opta stats show they have scored the highest proportion of Premier League goals from dead-ball situations this term (56%), while Arsenal have conceded the most (52%).

The last time Blues kept a clean sheet against a side from the same division in a League Cup game away from St Andrew's was in August 1992 (against Exeter).


Match Prediction:

Extra time Blues win 2-1



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The Journalist

Writer: Foxxy Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday February 27 2011

Time: 6:52AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
COME ON YOU BLUES!!!!!!!!!!!! We CAN do this, its about time we won a cup
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 06:57:00

Looking forward now to a steady drive down to the Smoke and hopefully be driving back with a big grin on my face
Original Prankster
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 07:00:00

No ticket for me, but that does mean I can watch in the pub and be close to the beer for aftermatch celebrations
Jack Regan
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 07:02:00

would you rather win the carling cup and be relegated?
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 07:37:00

No it won't. Enjoy your day out. You'll soon be back in Brum without the trophy.
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 07:41:00

Poor old murph, showing his jealousy for all to see. Sad *****. KRO - SOTV
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 11:21:00

Good Luck, Birmingham - from the Millers
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 15:59:00

LMFAO AT MURPH...... They've only gone and fkin done it lmao...Get in there Blues
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:00:00

Good job Blues are on hand to bring some glory to the City.... AND EUROPE NEXT SEASON
Jack Regan
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:05:00

yeeeeeesssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss !!!!! guts, endeavour ,passion, pride,thats birmingham city 1875 !!!for life have that u villa ****s boooooooooooommmmm
Jack Regan
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:08:00

Congrats and well played guys.
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:10:00

Congrats! Well deserved.
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:15:00

Very well done Brum! Your boys did you proud and you deserve the cup. Can't believe it's quiet here, maybe your fellow Blues are all in London now. Enjoy the win!
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:16:00

Well done first away game wa\s at your place in the FA cup in 1971...we lost 3-1...any way enjpoy the day, we did in 2008...well done Play Up Pompey
plymouth graham
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:20:00

Well played and enjoy your cup.
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 18:24:00

Villa fan here. Great performance. I'm not interested in the juvenile slagging off between Villa and Blues fans. You deserved the win (like you should have beaten LIverpool back when......). You showed far more passion and fight than Arsenal and a trophy is coming to this great city. Brilliant.
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 19:50:00

Well I was wrong lol! Fair do's Birmingham!
Report Abuse
27/02/2011 21:29:00

Well done to you guys, enjoy the win.
The Fear
Report Abuse
28/02/2011 08:18:00


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