Arsenal face Wolverhampton Wanderers at the Emirates this Saturday, as the hosts look to recover from their intense Carabao Cup exit.
The Gunners played in one of the games of the season on Wednesday evening, as their Carabao Cup trip to Anfield finished 5-5 after 90 minutes, with Liverpool going on to win on penalties. This only built on an already dismal week for Arsenal, who surrendered a two-goal lead against Crystal Palace last Sunday following another underwhelming performance.
Unai Emery is in desperate need of a victory to stop the rot and maintain pressure on those challenging for the Champions League places. However, more than anything, they need to build confidence following a torrid run of both results, and performances.
Wolves have made a fairly mediocre start to the campaign, attempting to juggle both domestic and European duties. Saturday's visitors will be eager to prey on the fragile spirit of their weekend opponents, knowing a victory at the Emirates would move them to within a point of the Gunners.
Here is 90min's preview of this clash:
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Saturday 2 November|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||15:00 (BST)|
|Where Is It Played?||Emirates Stadium|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||N/A|
Arsenal will be expected to name an almost entirely changed side to the one that played midweek.
Unai Emery has selection headaches with Mesut Ozil, Lucas Torreira and Gabriel Martinelli all putting in terrific performances against Liverpool. Granit Xhaka is expected to miss the game following his outburst against Palace.
The only injury concerns for Saturday's hosts are Reiss Nelson, who is still out with a knee injury, and Sead Kolasinac, who is reported to have a slight knock.
Wolves remain without Willy Boly as the Frenchman has just had surgery on his fibula. Morgan Gibbs-White is also a potential doubt for the visitors.
|Arsenal||Leno; Chambers, Sokratis, Luiz, Tierney; Guendouzi, Torreira, Ceballos; Pepe, Lacazette, Aubameyang |
|Wolves||Patricio; Doherty, Bennett, Coady, Saiss, Jonny; Dendoncker, Moutinho, Neves; Jota, Jimenez|
Head to Head Record
These two sides have faced off 114 times in the past, with Arsenal having won 57, drawn 27 and lost 30.
Wolves are unbeaten against Arsenal since returning to the Premier League, beating them 3-1 at Molineux last term and picking up a 1-1 draw at the Emirates.
Arsenal's last victory over Wanderers came back in 2012, a 3-0 victory in the Midlands.
Their last two league outings saw them drop points, a 1-0 defeat to Sheffield United and a 2-2 home draw with Crystal Palace. Arsenal have struggled for consistency and a number of timid performances have piled pressure on Unai Emery.
Arsenal sit in fifth place, four points off Chelsea and Leicester above, but need a victory to keep up with their rivals.
Despite a 2-1 midweek defeat to rivals Aston Villa, Wolves have been in good form of late, and are beginning to manage their increased fixture load.
Nuno Espirito Santo's side sit in twelfth place, with as many points, but will be eager to accelerate up the table and mount another challenge for the Europa League spots.
Here is both team's last five fixtures:
|Liverpool 5-5 Arsenal (5-4 on pens)||Aston Villa 2-1 Wolves|
|Arsenal 2-2 Crystal Palace||Newcastle United 1-1 Wolves|
|Arsenal 3-2 Vitoria de Guimaraes||Slovan Bratislava 1-2 Wolves|
|Sheffield United 1-0 Arsenal||Wolves 1-1 Southampton|
|Arsenal 1-0 Bournemouth||Manchester City 0-2 Wolves|
Many will be expecting goals in this one as Wolves phenomenal counter-attack face Arsenal's lacklustre defence. But, the hosts have plenty of firepower of their own, and their front three will cause Wolves plenty of problems.
Arsenal need to bounce back following a confidence-shattering week, but this is precisely the kind of game Emery wouldn't have wanted. On paper, many will think Arsenal should win comfortably, but Wolves' best performances often come against the 'Big Six' sides, as shown against Manchester City earlier in the campaign.
There will be plenty of excitement and it will be a fiercely fought contest between two offensive-minded teams. All eyes will be on the hosts, as anything but a win would be disastrous for the north London side.
Prediction: Arsenal 2-2 Wolves
Source : 90min