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Tootle's 'slug' goal celebration

The Toe Poke

Wenger: We won't shirk battle

Arsene Wenger is convinced his Arsenal squad are "ready for a fight" as they look to maintain their improved form when they travel to Chelsea on Saturday.

• Chelsea v Arsenal preview

The Gunners endured a tough start to the 2011-12 season, with their 8-2 loss to Manchester United an undoubted low point, although recently their results have improved, with the club winning seven of their last eight matches in all competitions.

Arsenal are currently seventh in the Premier League table ahead of this weekend's meeting with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, and Wenger has warned the club's rivals that his players are determined to continue their revival.

Speaking at Arsenal's AGM on Thursday, Wenger said: "The team is on the right way, it has a fantastic attitude and spirit. Where we will finish at the end of the season? Frankly, I don't know.

"But I know just one thing that these players we have at the moment are ready for a fight, because I see them every day and they are ready to have a go."

Meanwhile, Wenger explained defender Thomas Vermaelen remains a doubt for Saturday's clash with Chelsea, after the Belgian made his return to action during midweek but was substituted due to a tight calf.

He told the club's official website: "Vermaelen might be available to be in the squad. We'll have to assess him. He is not injured. He came off with a calf problem on Tuesday in the Carling Cup.

"It was cramp because he has not played for a long time and he only had one training session. As I say, he is not injured, but he might be a little bit short for a game of that intensity."


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