Arsenal are looking to build up on their weekend FA Cup win over Burnley when they return to the Premier League action on Tuesday against the in-form Southampton.
Arsene Wenger’s troops mustered a 2-1 win in the fourth-round FA Cup tie against Burnley at home courtesy of goals from Chambers and Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean striker has been a huge influence in the game as he managed to get himself on the scoresheet, but to record an assist for the opening goal as well. Sanchez has made his first start since November and his return to full fitness came to the pleasing of both Arsene Wenger and Arsenal fans. The Gunners took the lead after 19 minutes of play, but Burnley did well to equalize at the half-hour mark through Sam Vokes. Alexis Sanchez put Arsenal in front after 53 minutes and the result remained intact until the end. The Arsenal fans were happy with their team’s performance, most of all with the debutant Mohamed Elneny, who did enough to earn the plaudits for his energetic display. Turning their attention back to the Premier League, Gunners will be hoping to end their winless streak that has been going on since 2nd January and their 1-0 over Newcastle. Their stuttering form has seen them drop to third spot in the standings, level on points with Manchester City and three behind the league Leaders Leicester City.
Tomas Rosicky made his first appearance of the season against Burnley, but has suffered a thigh injury and is set for another month on the sidelines.
Hector Bellerin, Nacho Monreal and Petr Cech should return having been rested for the FA Cup action, but Per Mertesacker is suspended.
The Saints head to the Emirates stadium in excellent form. Ronald Koeman’s men have put the poor stretch of form behind them and are now on the three-match winning run in the Premier League. Southampton have managed three clean-sheet victories over Watford (2-0) and West Brom (3-0) at home respectively, while their latest outing was the trip to Old Trafford, which turned out to be a huge success. The Saints put in a resilient performance against the empathic hosts and have earned a late win thanks to a goal from Charlie Austin. Former Queens Park Rangers man came off the bench to score the winner at Old Trafford and prove that his worth against the team which had the chance to bring him themselves. Ronald Koeman has once again proved to be a proper transfer master as he got the last season’s Premier League top striker as a bargain buy in January. Austin has increased the competition upfront and added an extra quality to Southampton’s attacking line which was more than evident with his inspired ten-minute run against Manchester United. The Saints thrashed Arsenal 4-0 on Boxing Day and will have to be taken quite seriously on Tuesday.
Charlie Austin could be awarded a starting berth following his ten-minute stint off the bench against Manchester United.
The Saints had a week off and Koeman has no new injury woes other than his long-term absentees Jay Rodriguez, Florin Gados and Gaston Ramirez.
Key Factors to Consider
- Arsenal are winless in their last 3 Premier League matches
- Southampton haven’t conceded a goal in their last 3 league games
- The Saints have won just one of their last 21 trips to Arsenal
- The Gunners lost the last 2 meetings with Koeman’s men, failing to score in both
- Alexis Sanchez scored in both of his appearances versus Southampton at the Emirates
The Tuesday fixture against Southampton is a potential banana skin for the home side, but with Alexis Sanchez back in the fold, Arsene Wenger’s troops have much better chances of securing the much needed win. We should be in for an entertaining clash and a home win.
Best odds: 5/6