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Partizan Belgrade vs Arsenal – Gunners face tough test in Serbia

| 28.09.2010

Arsenal head to Serbia to face Partizan Belgrade on Wednesday with the same injury troubles that were a factor in their loss to West Bromwich Albion.

Without the backbone of Thomas Vermaelen, Francesc Fabregas and Robin Van Persie, Arsenal are without leaders or goals, and the West Brom game emphasised their shortcomings.

The Gunners will be without the trio, plus Theo Walcott and Manuel Almunia for the trip to Serbia, although some would be grateful for the goalkeeper’s absence after another poor showing on Saturday.

Partizan were unbeaten on their way to winning the Serbian SuperLiga last season and dropped just four points at home and are 9/2 to beat Arsenal.

Arsenal have won just one of their previous nine Champions League away ties and have gone 12 games without a clean sheet so the 8/13 available for Arsenal to win looks a little short.

Lukasz Fabianski will be the man tasked with keeping the Partizan forward line quiet and with Partizan drawing all three home games the last time they were in the Champions League, including a tie with Real Madrid, the draw looks the best bet at 11/4.

Braga vs Shakhtar Donetsk

After their 6-0 drubbing at the Emirates in their first Champions League tie, Braga fans will be hopeful of a better showing from their side and Braga are 7/5 to emerge with three points.

Shakhtar may have won their opening game but they struggle against Portuguese opposition, losing the last three ties in a row.

Shakhtar are 15/8 to reverse that trend but Braga were unbeaten at home in the Portuguese league last season and can win whilst keeping a clean sheet at 5/2.

Arsenal are 1/5 to top Group H but that will change with a loss in Serbia. See the full UEFA Champions League football betting odds market here.



Ed Needham