Arsenal dealt defensive injury blow

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Arsenal have been dealt an injury blow ahead of their FA Cup fourth round clash with Championship side Brighton and Hove Albion.

Captain Thomas Vermaelen picked up an ankle injury in the win over West Ham united on Wednesday night at Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners travel to the Amex Stadium for a tricky cup tie as Gus Poyet’s Brighton have knocked out Premier League side Newcastle United two years running.

Arsene Wenger’s team got there by virtue of a replay win over Swansea City, so will likely be more focused to avoid another poor away result.

They may have to do it without their slipper, however, who had to be withdrawn in the 5-1 league win over the Hammers and the French tactician confirmed an ankle knock after the game.

“Vermaelen has an ankle problem. He got kicked and twisted a little bit. He is a doubt for Saturday but it is nothing major,” he said on Arsenal’s official website.

The Emirates Stadium outfit will be hoping the Belgium international is not out for too long as the clash with Brighton will be their fifth game in less than two weeks and a Premier League clash with Liverpool awaits just four days later.

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