Coventry boss Robins in the dark over Arsenal selection ahead of Capital One Cup clash
22:20 GMT, 25 September 2012
Coventry City boss Mark Robins has no idea which Arsenal team his League One strugglers will face at the Emirates on Wednesday night.
But he has asked Arsene Wenger to leave the Gunners' Under-11 striker out of his plans.
With the Sky Blues bottom but one in their division without a league victory to their name so far this season, a trip to the in-form north Londoners might seem a daunting task.
New man in charge: Robins is preparing for Coventry's trip to Arsenal
But with 8,000 fans in support, Robins is hoping his club can repeat the feat of five years ago when two Michael Mifsud goals defeated Manchester United at the same stage of the competition.
However, Robins admits that the new rules brought in by the Football League to ensure clubs field strong starting XIs have not helped in his planning.
New rules state that managers must play six of their first-team, based on overall appearances in previous games.
However, the Football League is trialling this experiment and has no jurisdiction over Premier League clubs. It has left Robins not knowing what he will face.
'I'm expecting six players from their starting line-up on Sunday to play,' he said, 'but I'm hoping that they renege on that agreement with the Football League.
Young Guns: Wenger is likely to rest a number of key players for the visit of Coventry
'If we have to adhere to it and they don't have to, what it means is that they will be slightly less than full strength. They will have quality in every position and ability in every position.
'We have a list of their players and Arsene Wenger could do anything, to be honest, which makes it difficult to plan.
'But I have to tell you, I went to watch Arsenal's Under-11s play in a tournament at Warwick University recently.
'And they have a striker who is a cross between Ian Wright and Thierry Henry. It was frightening. It was pass, pass, pass too. Very impressive. I wouldn't like to face him in a few years!
'Having said that, we can only plan for ourselves.'
Robins added James Bailey to his squad, following a loan deal that was agreed with Derby County, as he tries to arrest a slump in form following Andy Thorn's sacking that has seen the Sky Blues lose five successive league matches.
However, he remains confident in his ability to turn the tide and change the mind-set at a club that has been in a downwards spiral since its' demotion from the Premier League 11 years ago.
'This is a magnificent football club,' he said, 'Coventry is a club that was in the top-flight when I was growing up and wouldn't be out of place should we return there.
'This is a job to relish. I'm not surprised at what I have walked into, however.
'Having worked with the players for four days, I know they have decent attributes but the mentality needs changing.
'There is an air of negativity. We have to change that. It will change but it will take time.
'It's a club that could move quickly. But it's a long way off. Don't hold me to a time-scale. Look at the likes of Norwich and Southampton who have ended up with back-to-back promotions.
'It will turn and things will become more positive and far clearer in due course.'