Thursday, December 5, 2019

Prediction: Fulham vs Arsenal

Verdict: Arsenal win

Best Odds: 4/6

Bookmaker: Bet365

Looking to make it extend their winning run to nine matches across all competitions, Arsenal will travel across London on Sunday to Craven Cottage.

Fulham

Starting with Slaviša Jokanović, while Fulham may have had their sights set on securing a top half finish in their return to top flight football, it hasn’t been a dream start for the Cottagers. Coming off the back of a 3-0 hammering away at Everton last weekend, they have now failed to win any of their last four Premier League outings. Despite spending over £100million during the summer transfer window, Fulham have already shipped 16 goals and they hold the joint worst defensive record in the division. Jokanović’ will also be concerned by his sides recent record against Arsenal, the Whites have managed to pick up just one win against the Gunners over the past decade. If Fulham are to pull of a shock upset against their rivals, the Cottagers will be hoping Serbian international Aleksandar Mitrovic to carry on his impressive start to the season. Since moving from Newcastle permanently over the summer, the 24-year-old already has five Premier League goals to his name.

Team News

Fulham are without full-backs Timothy Fosu-Mensah and Joe Bryan, who suffered respective shoulder and hamstring injuries against Everton last week.

However, Alfie Mawson is in contention to return from a back problem.

Arsenal

As for the Gunners, while they may have suffered back to back defeats in their opening Premier League matches, the Reds have started to show plenty of improvements under new boss Unai Emery. Picking up a 3-0 win away at Qarabag in the Europa League on Thursday, Arsenal have now won their last nine matches on the bounce across all competitions. Now scoring 14 in their last five, it will be their recent defensive record that is most impressing the former PSG manager. While they could not record a clean sheet in their opening six matches, Arsenal have now shipped just one goal in their last four. Although Fulham have their own striker enjoying a fine start to the season, Arsenal’s Alexandre Lacazette appears to be relishing working alongside Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. The Frenchman now has two in his last three for Emery’s side.

Team News

Arsenal hope Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will have recovered from illness, while Aaron Ramsey could play depending on the timing of his child’s birth.

Bernd Leno will make his first Premier League start, with Petr Cech ruled out by a hamstring injury.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Arsenal have now won their last nine matches across all competitions.
  • Seven of those nine victories have finished with over 2.5 goals.
  • Fulham are yet to record a clean sheet in their opening seven Premier League matches.
  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has 13 goals in his last 18 competitive matches.
  • Since his debut for Fulham in February 2018, Aleksandar Mitrovic has scored 18 goals in English league football, more than any other player.

Conclusion

On paper, Unai Emery will see Sunday’s derby as the perfect opportunity to extend his winning run. With Fulham yet to keep a clean sheet in the Premier League this season, it is hard to see them keeping out a free-scoring Arsenal side. Given the Gunners now scoring two or more in each of their matches on the road so far this season, we’re backing another Arsenal win on Sunday.

Verdict: Arsenal win

Best Odds: 4/6

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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