How do Arsenal solve a problem like Delap?

If there is one thing Arsenal could do with tomorrow, it's a nice easy home game against a side who attack. Where's a Kevin Keegan-inspired side when you need one?

But that isn't going to happen and a visit to newcomers Stoke is going to provide another stern test for our young Guns.

Sides managed by Tony Pulis tend to be quite direct and that's going to be a problem for us.

I remember one Premiership manager I talked to in the Directors' Box at Highbury a few years ago while we watched a reserve game, waxing lyrical about the size of the Arsenal team.

That was in the days when Patrick Vieira dominated midfield, Tony Adams marshalled the defence and Martin Keown and Manu Petit provided suitable defensive cover.

‘It's almost impossible to get past them - the defence is so well organised but they're also so well protected, and that's why everyone wants to copy them,' he said.

Things change and we have no aerial presence to speak of.

Every team needs its giants - Vidic, Terry, Agger...and we are midgets by comparison.

That is going to make the trip to Stoke an even bigger challenge, especially with the throws of Rory Delap proving to be such a challenge for Premiership defences.

As Delap says: "It's not a trade secret, people have seen it on TV. It was the same in the Championship last season. They will have watched videos, but if it's done right there is no way of defending it. It doesn't matter what team you are up against, it's going to work if I hit the right areas.

"It's more accurate than a corner and he wants it as flat as possible because it's a harder ball to clear and the defenders or attackers can flick it on. We usually put two lads in an area of six feet which I've got to hit."

So how are we going to cope?

No one seems to have made use of having a player close to the touchline, which I'm surprised about. A player isn't allowed within two metres of the thrower, but why not put our tallest man as close to Delap as possible?

Everyone knows that distances from free kicks and throws are never adhered to as closely as they should, so Manu Adebayor (I expect him to retain his place despite a lacklustre display on Wednesday) should try and disrupt the Irish international.

If Adebayor can make a nuisance of himself, it may well put Delap off his rhythm and that is going to give us the best chance of surviving an aerial barrage that could go very badly for us unless everyone is on their game.