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Arsenal star ready for Montpellier, Manchester City and Chelsea tests

Thomas Vermaelen has taken the captain's armband from the departed Robin van Persie. Photo: Jon Buckle/PA Thomas Vermaelen has taken the captain's armband from the departed Robin van Persie. Photo: Jon Buckle/PA

Monday, September 17, 2012
11:16 AM

Arsenal star Thomas Vermaelen is expecting a difficult fortnight as the Gunners look to build on their unbeaten start to the season.

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The north Londoners drew with Stoke and Sunderland before beating Liverpool and Southampton.

However, they have a trip to French champions Montpellier before two games against title rivals Manchester City and Chelsea.

“We have to stay focused because there are a few hard games coming up,” Vermaelen told Arsenal Player.

“We have to play away at Montpellier on Tuesday and then we have Manchester City so it is not going to be easy. It is good for confidence, we are happy today but Tuesday is another game.

“The Champions League is always different so that will be a test as well, especially away from home. Manchester City are the champions from last year so it won’t be easy. We have to go there and play our own game - I am confident we can get a result there.

“The team has a strong bond in the dressing room and outside as well. It feels good. All of the players, especially the guys who came in, look good. Everybody plays with a lot of confidence and that is good.”

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Arsenal

Nickname: The Gunners.

Ground: Emirates Stadium (capacity 60,361).

Founded: 1886.

Honours: First Division (until 1992) and Premier League: 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1938, 1948, 1953, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2004.

FA Cup: 1930, 1936, 1950, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2005.

League Cup: 1987, 1993.

Fairs Cup: 1970.

Cup Winners’ Cup: 1994.

Leading goalscorer: Thierry Henry, 228.

Leading appearances: David O’Leary, 722.