Thursday, December 5, 2019

Prediction: Arsenal vs Southampton

Verdict: Both teams to score

Best Odds: 3/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

Two sides who are desperately seeking some much-needed stability, Arsenal will welcome Southampton to the Emirates on Saturday afternoon.

Arsenal

Starting with the hosts, entering the international with a 2-0 defeat away at Leicester, Arsenal still find themselves in the midst of a crisis and the pressure is really starting to mount on Head Coach Unai Emery. Failing to win any of their last five matches across all competitions, including their dramatic EFL Cup defeat away at Anfield last month, the former PSG boss has also seen his side continue to struggle while on Premier League duties. Now sat eight points adrift of the top-four, the Gunners are without a top-flight victory since the 6th of October, a run that has seen them drop points against Sheffield United, Crystal Palace, and Wolves. If Arsenal are to make a much-needed return to winning ways this weekend, then fans around the Emirates will be looking for new club captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to refind his goalscoring touch. The Gabon international has recorded just a single strike across all competitions in his last six attempts.

Team News

Unai Emery has revealed that he could be tempted to hand Granit Xhaka a first appearance since being stripped of the Arsenal captaincy earlier in the month.

Elsewhere, Mesut Ozil looks set to maintain his spot in Emery’s starting XI along with the returning Hector Bellerin.

Southampton

As for the visitors, entering the international break by watching Everton snatch a dramatic 2-1 win at St. Mary’s, Southampton boss Ralph Hasenhüttl is another manager coming under increasing scrutiny. In the midst of a four-match losing run across all competitions, a run that was highlighted by their embarrassing 9-0 hammering against Leicester last month. Opening the weekend down in 19th and already sat three points adrift of safety, there is no doubt that the former RB Leipzig boss will also be hugely concerned by his side’s struggles against Saturday’s hosts, particularly in the capital. Suffering a 2-0 loss against Arsenal when they met at the Emirates back in February, the Saints have won just one of their last seven matches against the Gunners, including losing each of their last three meetings in North London. If Southampton are to pull of what would be quite the upset and pile more pressure on Emery this weekend, then fans on the South Coast will be desperate for their side to find some defensive resolve. No team in the top-flight holds a worse defensive record and they have also conceded two or more goals in six of their last seven Premier League appearances.

Team News

Michael Obafemi is the only fitness concern for Ralph Hasenhüttl who should field a familiar lineup at the Emirates.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Arsenal have lost just one of their previous seven Premier League matches against Southampton.
  • Three of the last four meetings between the two sides have seen both teams find the net.
  • No team in the Premier League have conceded more than Southampton’s 29 goals this season.
  • Seven of Arsenal’s last eight top-flight matches in North London have seen both teams find the net.
  • Striker Danny Ings has six goals in his last seven matches across all competitions.

Conclusion

In a battle between two managers desperately looking to steady the ship, Saturday’s matchup at the Emirates has all the makings of a matchup that should produce plenty of chances at both ends. With both Arsenal and Southampton still struggling with some rather drastic defensive issues, we’re expecting another action-packed meeting between the two sides. With seven of Arsenal’s last eight Premier League matches seeing both teams find the net within 90 minutes, we’re backing a similar outcome this weekend.

Verdict: Both teams to score

Best Odds: 3/4

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

SHARE OR COMMENT ON THIS ARTICLE

WE RECOMMEND

Leave a Reply

avatar
 
smilegrinwinkmrgreenneutraltwistedarrowshockunamusedcooleviloopsrazzrollcryeeklolmadsadexclamationquestionideahmmbegwhewchucklesillyenvyshutmouth
  Subscribe  
Notify of
Live Scores

advertisement

Betting Guide Advertisement

advertisement

Become a Writer
More More
Top