Thursday, September 20, 2018

Prediction: Bournemouth vs Arsenal

Verdict: Arsenal win and both teams to score 

Best Odds: 13/5

Bookmaker: Bet365

Without a win in their last four matches in all competitions, Arsene Wenger will be desperate to kick-start the Gunners season. Already trying to close down a five-point deficit on the top4 four, on Sunday afternoon, Arsenal will travel to the Vitality Stadium to meet a Bournemouth side who find themselves firmly in the middle of a relegation battle.

Bournemouth

Last weekend, the Cherries were one of several Premier League sides who failed to impress in the FA Cup third-round. 2-0 down at home to League One leader’s Wigan Athletic, Eddie Howe’s side needed a last minute equalizer to secure a replay against the Latics. As for their form in the Premier League this season, Bournemouth currently find themselves sat in 16th position. Although the Cherries may be unbeaten in their last three top-flight appearances, Bournemouth have only managed to pick up one win in their last 10 top-flight appearances. Only a single point above the drop zone, Howe’s side are still firmly involved in a battle to keep their Premier League status come May.

Team News

Aaron Ramsey is back in the Arsenal squad following a hamstring issue, but Mesut Ozil (knee) was rated as only “50-50” by Wenger.

Nacho Monreal (ankle), Laurent Koscielny (Achilles) and Olivier Giroud (hamstring) are still sidelined but Sead Kolasanic could return.

Arsenal

For Arsene Wenger’s side, the Gunners will be looking to immediately bounce back from their shock FA Cup exit last weekend. Shipping four against Championship outfit Nottingham Forrest, the defending champions suffered an embarrassing 4-2 defeat at the City Ground. With the future of talisman Alexes Sanchez stealing the headlines, Arsenal, and their French boss must turn their attention to securing a top-four finish come May. Currently sat sixth in the table, Arsene Wenger is already chasing down a five-point gap on fourth place Liverpool. Without a win in their last four appearances in all competitions, a second shock defeat against Bournemouth on Sunday will be the first time Arsenal have gone four Premier League matches without a win in over two decades.

Team News

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe will hand late fitness tests to Josh King and Junior Stanislas. Both forwards have been battling hamstring complaints, but could yet return for the match.

Jermain Defoe and Tyrone Mings remain sidelined with long-term injury issues.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Bournemouth have never won in six previous encounters with Arsenal, and conceded at least twice in each of those games.
  • They could win back-to-back games at the Vitality Stadium for the first time since last March.
  • Arsenal could go four games without a win at the start of a calendar year for the first time since 1995.
  • The Gunners have conceded eight goals in their last four league matches.
  • Bournemouth have lost 10 and won only one of their 13 Premier League matches played on a Sunday.

Conclusion

Although Arsenal have struggled drastically away from the Emirates this year. Arsene Wenger will remain confident about mounting a top-four charge on Sunday afternoon. Looking to pick up just their second Premier League away win since November, Arsenal’s attacking options will fancy their chances against a Bournemouth side who have conceded 12 goals in their last five appearances, they’re also a side who haven’t kept a clean sheet since the end of November. Although we do feel Arsene Wenger’s side will be to much for Bournemouth to handle. We do expect the Cherries to beach Arsenal’s vulnerable defense at least once.

Verdict: Arsenal win and both teams to score 

Best Odds: 13/5

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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