Arsenal vs Liverpool – English Premier League – Preview

Posted on by Sreya

Arsenal will host Liverpool at the Emirates as the English Premier League returns after an international break. Arsenal sit at the third position on the table, just a point behind Manchester City while Liverpool, still chasing Manchester United for the fourth and final UEFA Champions League place, are on 54 points after 30 matches. It marks for an intriguing contest because Arsenal have won all of its eight home Premier League matches, while Liverpool have kept clean sheets in their last six away games.

Arsenal are currently the in-form side of Premier League, having won nine out of the last ten league games. Liverpool lost to Manchester United just before the international break, after winning five on the trot.

Team News & Formation

Arsene Wenger will miss the services of Alex Oxlaide-Chamberlain. The likes of Mathieu Debuchy, Mikel Arteta and Jack Wilshere are lacking in match fitness. Danny Welbeck’s condition is being closely followed after the Englishman pulled out of his national squad. If Arsenal are pegged by injuries, Brendan Rodgers has even greater problems in his hand with Martin Skrtl and Steven Gerrard suspended. Adam Lallana is listed as doubtful for the game. Although Daniel Sturridge picked up a hip injury, he has been cleared to face the Gunners.

Rodgers is expected to line up the Kops in a 3-4-3 formation, which the Liverpool faithful have witnessed in recent weeks. Arsenal will feature in their usual 4-2-3-1 with the attacking trio of Mesut Ozil, Santi Cazorla and Alexis Sanchez holding the key to three points.

Key Players

For the home side, Olivier Giroud will be the most crucial for the London club. With thirteen goals to his name, the Frenchman has netted eight times in the last nine Premier League matches. Not only has Giroud’s finishing improved, but his excellent movement in the box and link-up play with his team mates have put Arsenal in a favourable position as the season approaches its business end.

Alexis Sanchez is the flavour of the season for the Gunners. But Mesut Ozil’s return from injury has spurred Wenger’s side on to mount a ‘late’ challenge for the league title. Ever since the German playmaker has returned to fold, Arsenal have won 24 out of 27 points available. His on-pitch camaraderie with Santi Cazorla has created chance after chance for Arsenal.

For Liverpool, the responsibilities lie on the young shoulders of Raheem Sterling and Daniel Sturridge. Daniel Sturridge, in spite of playing just 705 minutes this season, is averaging 0.51 goal every 90 minutes. Rodgers’ team will definitely be boosted by the fact that Sturridge will start up front and not the struggling Balotelli or Lambert.

Raheem Sterling, along with Philippe Coutinho, has been the creative outlet for the Merseyside club. Sterling averages 2.2 key passes per game and also takes 2.4 shots on an average, every 90 minutes. Sterling has scored six goals and assisted seven more this season. His contribution down Liverpool’s right will be significant, especially considering the fact that Ozil on Arsenal’s left flank does not tend to track back.

Free Prediction by Author Sreya

Although H2H stats indicate that the clubs might play out a draw, home field advantage and current form tips the match slightly in Arsenal’s favour.

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