Arsenal vs. Reading: Preview and TV schedule

Clive Mason

Nigel Adkins begins his new job with a difficult task as his relegation-threatened side travel to Arsenal, with the Gunners looking to close the gap on rivals Tottenham.

Nigel Adkins will have a tough start to his job as the new Reading boss faces a daunting away trip to Arsenal in his first game in charge.

The Royals sacked Brian McDermott after their last game and have appointed former Southampton boss Adkins to make a last-ditch attempt to save the club from relegation, but they will find it hard to get anything from an in-form Arsenal side who are desperate to close a 4-point deficit with rivals Tottenham Hotspur and claim a Champions League place for next season.

Reading may only have a slim hope of avoiding the drop, as they are currently 7 points adrift of 17th-placed Aston Villa, but they have no new injury concerns as they make one final push to stay alive. For Arsenal, the prospect of missing out on Champions League football will be almost as much concern as relegation is to the Royals, so the stakes are high.

Arsenal injuries and suspensions

Out: Abou Diaby (knee), Jack Wilshere (ankle), Theo Walcott (hip). In doubt: Kieran Gibbs (virus), Wojciech Szczesny, Thomas Vermaelen.

Reading injuries and suspensions

Out: Adam Federici (ankle), Jimmy Kebe (groin), Jason Roberts (hip)

Abou Diaby joins Arsenal's long-term injury list, with Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere also unavailable. Wojciech Szczesny and Thomas Vermaelen could return to the side after lay-offs, however, and Kieran Gibbs will undergo a late fitness test.

Reading are still without Adam Federici, Jimmy Kebe and Jason Roberts, but have no fresh injury concerns to contend with. Pavel Pogrebnyak also returns after a three-match ban.

Match Date\Time: Saturday, 3 p.m. local, 11 a.m. ET

Venue: Emirates Stadium, London, England

TV: Sportsnet World (Canada)

Online: FOX Soccer 2Go (U.S.)

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