Arsenal’s Vermaelen wary of threat posed by West Ham’s Carroll
Arsenal defender Thomas Vermaelen expecting to have his hands full when coming up against Andy Carroll at Upton Park
Thomas Vermaelen is braced for a “big challenge” against Andy Carroll when Arsenal travel to West Ham United on Saturday afternoon.
Carroll, who moved to Upton Park on loan from Liverpool this summer, headed the winner when Newcastle secured a 1-0 victory over the Gunners at Emirates Stadium back in 2010.
Gunners captain Vermaelen came up against £35m Carroll during his time at Liverpool – and the Belgium international knows he will have his hands full when facing him on Saturday.
“I played against Andy Carroll when he played for Liverpool,” Vermaelen told Arsenal Player.
“He suits their way of playing at the moment. At West Ham they play some long balls and with Carroll up front, he’s a tall guy. He’s good with his head so he will be a big challenge.
“But we always want to play our own game as Arsenal. First we have to match them in the fight. If there’s a long ball, we want to fight for that ball and bring the ball down as quickly as possible and play our own game.
“I’ve played at Upton Park a few times in the past and I must say I like the stadium and the atmosphere there, so it’s quite nice to go there and play again.”
Vermaelen says the Gunners are desperate to bounce back from their disappointing 2-1 defeat by Chelsea at The Emirates last weekend with victory over Sam Allardyce’s Hammers.
He added: “We go into every game to get the three points, and especially after the defeat against Chelsea. We want to get the win because that’s really important if you look at the ranking at the table.”