Arsenal Vs West Ham United, Sat 30 Oct 2010

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Arsenal will be without left-back Kieran Gibbs for the visit of Barclays Premier League bottom club West Ham after the England defender suffered knee ligament damage in the Carling Cup win at Newcastle.

Goalkeeper Manuel Almunia (elbow), defender Thomas Vermaelen (Achilles) and midfielder Abou Diaby (ankle) are still not yet match fit, while Jack Wilshere serves the last of his three-match ban.

Long-term absentees Aaron Ramsey and Robin van Persie are scheduled to return to full training at the end of next week.

Ahead of the game, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted it was simpler when a player was just ruled offside, but feels English officials are doing the best they can to deal with the interpretations of difficult new FIFA guidelines.

The Gunners benefited from a controversial decision during their 4-0 Carling Cup win at Newcastle in midweek, Theo Walcott being allowed to go on and score despite Nicklas Bendtner appearing to come from an offside position and block defender Mike Williamson.

Both Tottenham and Everton also saw dubious goals allowed in their respective Barclays Premier League games with Fulham and Everton.

Wenger accepts the directives on when a player is active or not have added to the already testing job for referees and their assistants.

"It was easier for the referee certainly, but I must say to their credit the linesmen have improved tremendously in England to judge the offside," the Arsenal manager said.

"I see many games in Europe and I think they get it right in England more than anywhere else."

Wenger continued: "It is very difficult to interpret because you are offside if one part of the body you can score with is offside and that's not always very easy to see.

"Sometimes it is the second part of the action, when the guy can take part of his initial offside position away and that looks a little unjust.

"The rule is you judge the situation when the ball is played so that means phase two is again phase one because you judge again when the ball is played - so phase two does basically not exist.

"That is why sometimes you can feel that a guy takes advantage of his offside position.

"The only thing sometimes I am not happy with is that if a guy who is central is 10 yards offside and he scores a goal from a first touch after a cross from the wing, you should maybe consider that is a bit unfair."

West Ham captain Matthew Upson looks certain to miss out with a hamstring injury he received against Newcastle last week.

Upson has had intensive treatment this week but manager Avram Grant admitted he was reluctant to risk the defender.

Striker Frederic Piquionne is also doubtful with a leg injury but Grant reported no other major worries although he admitted his squad were "tired" after their Carling Cup victory against Stoke.

Grant insists his West Ham side can conquer their fear and start climbing the table.

Winger Valon Behrami admitted this week that his team-mates were "a little bit scared" when they took to the field after having taken just six points from their first nine matches.

But Grant believes the trip across London to take on Arsenal is the perfect stage to strip out any psychological problems.

He said: "It is good that Behrami was very honest. Maybe some people are scared. When I was in top teams (Chelsea) I saw that they were scared to lose the semi-final of the Champions League.

"It is not so negative, it does not need to affect you on the pitch. If you can do your job on the pitch that is important. I don't think any team at the bottom or the top go on to the pitch thinking they can win without any fear. We had zero points after four games. We had reason to feel fear and maybe some did feel it. But we are trying to build a winning mentality. You need to have the desire to win every game."

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