Boss - What to expect from plastic pitch

Borough Sports Ground - Sutton United
Gander Green Lane

It has been a trying week for everyone at the club, and next up is a potentially tricky test at Sutton United in the Emirates FA Cup.

We will be heavy favourites to progress against the non-league side, but Arsene Wenger knows the perils of playing on the artificial pitch at Gander Green Lane.

“[The biggest dangers are] first of all the pitch, secondly their enthusiasm and thirdly if we are not ready for a big fight and subconsciously think that they are a non-league team and it is no matter. That will not happen,” the manager said.

“Ideally we would like to play on a normal pitch but it has been accepted and the competition is to deal with what you face. We will face an unusual pitch and we will have to deal with it.

“We will practise inside [ahead of the game] because it is an artificial pitch. It is not the same because it is a dry pitch [at our training ground] and Sutton I have heard have a wet pitch which they water before the game and is quicker.

"It is a bit ‘stop’. The weight on the joints is different and you cannot slide to block every time so it makes football a bit different. The ball comes to you suddenly and accelerates and does not slow down like in a normal game, so we have to get used to the different speed.”


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