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Arsenal vs. Borussia Dortmund: Match preview

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Arsenal's Champions League fortunes hinge on tomorrow's match against a familiar foe.

Thumbs up! We can do this!
Thumbs up! We can do this!
Ian Walton/Getty Images

Borussia Dortmund at Arsenal
Wednesday, November 26, 2:45 ET
Emirates Stadium, London
TV: Fox Sports 1 (womp womp)

When last we saw Arsenal in a Champions League tilt, they were up 3-0 vs. Anderlecht in the second half, and things were looking pretty good. What happened next was regrettable, and puts them in what amounts to a must-win status tomorrow, assuming that Arsenal would like to still win Group D and not have to face a group winner (probably Real Madrid or Bayern Munich) in the Round of 16.

Arsenal currently sits in second in group with 7 points, while Dortmund leads the group with 12 points. If Dortmund ties or wins tomorrow, they clinch the group. If Arsenal wins, the group places will come down to the final matches on December 9, with Dortmund hosting Anderlecht and Arsenal going to the Istanbul stadium lovingly referred to by their fans as "Hell," as in "Welcome to."

As we reported earlier today, Laurent Koscielny is back and available to play, and that's terrific news. Unfortunately, Wojciech Szczesny is out following his derp-collision with Kieran Gibbs this past weekend, so Emiliano Martinez (he used to be Damian) will be the starting keeper, and with David Ospina still out, Arsene Wenger will tour the academy to bring a backup keeper into the squad of 18. Because Olivier Giroud wasn't registered for the group stages (you know, broken foot and all), he won't be available for selection, and Danny Welbeck is still questionable for tomorrow, so perhaps it's Lukas Podolski time.

Dortmund has its own injury woes -- namely, Marco Reus, who has an ankle issue keeping him sidelined until the January transfer window makes his name much more prominent, and Mats Hummels, whose name has also been linked to Arsenal of late. Sokratis Papastathopoulos might return, just two weeks removed from breaking his fibula.

Also, expect Fox's commentators (I'm betting Eric Wynalda here) to make much hay about the Klopp-to-Arsenal rumors that we won't bother to link to here.

Prediction: