What a treat world football is in for this weekend as early as 12:45pm on Saturday afternoon. English Premier League surprise table toppers Arsenal, travel to Anfield to take on Liverpool who’ve come on leaps and bounds under Brendan Rodgers.
Maybe I’m doing some injustice to Arsenal by describing them as surprise table toppers but many wouldn’t have predicted them to have maintained such an impressive run of results. Arsene Wenger has certainly got the full potential out of his squad this term with the likes of Mesut Ozil and Olivier Giroud instrumental this campaign.
Liverpool are still in close contention of the title but it would appear that a return to Champions League is a more realistic target for the Merseyside club. Luis Suarez has notched 23 league goals this season despite missing the first five games of the season through suspension and his form has been one of the highlights of this season. So it wouldn’t come to a surprise that he is best priced at 1/10 with Betfair to continue his prolific goal scoring and finish as the leagues top goal scorer.
Head To head
A rather surprising statistic between these two is in the last 12 competitive games, Liverpool have only managed to come out victorious once. A 2-0 win at the Emirates back in August 2011. However, Liverpool’s decline in recent seasons has been evident and they now seem a rejuvenated side under Rodgers guidance and are starting to gain consistency to break back into the top 4.
Nevertheless, Arsenal’s away form is the best in the league with 8 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses. Them two losses came against both Manchester clubs so some could argue that when the London club travel to a side of any note, they struggle.
This is why the ‘draw no bet’ market has a lot of appeal and 31/20 for Arsenal with BetVictor is advertising. Arsenal will have breathed a sigh of relief as they no doubt watched Chelsea’s shock 1-0 victory against Manchester City at the Ettihad. This came two days after Arsenal slumped to a disappointing 2-2 draw at Southampton. The added insurance of the ‘draw no bet’ applies a refund if the Liverpool v Arsenal game ends a draw which has every opportunity but I believe if either club is going to nick it, Arsenal will be the team.
Both teams are experiencing injuries in key positions which has been well documented. Liverpool have been hit by defensive casualties this season with arguably their three strongest defenders all ruled out. Glen Johnson, Daniel Agger and Jose Enrique will once again be absent and they’re also joined by French international, Mamadou Sakho.
Arsenal don’t have such issues in defence as despite criticism in recent years, Arsenals defence have prospered this season with the influential Steve Bould heavily involved in the defensive coaching team this season. Jack Wilshere, Aaron Ramsey, Matheiu Flamini, Abou Diaby, Theo Walcott and Kim Kallstrom are all on the casualty list. Despite the alarming amount of midfielders out, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlains timely return to action saw him notch both goals in the 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace. He is likely to keep his place in central midfield accompanied by Mikael Arteta and Mesut Ozil.
Likely Line Ups –
Liverpool: Mignolet, Flanagan, Cissokho, Skrtel, K.Toure, Gerrard, Henderson, Coutinho, Sterling, Sturridge, Suarez.
Arsenal: Szczesney, Sagna, Gibbs, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Arteta, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ozil, Rosicky, Cazorla, Giroud.
Both fans are as expectant as ever after both clubs have enjoyed very good seasons to date. Liverpool threw away the points in their last outing away to West Bromwich Albion and will be hoping to rectify that in front of their home fans on Saturday. Arsenal meanwhile will be looking over their shoulder knowing that Manchester City are likely to triumph over relegation threatened Norwich City later on Saturday so know only three points at Anfield will keep them at the top of the table.
Arsenal, draw no bet at 31/20 with BetVictor: This is the stand out for me and on a player note…
Luis Suarez to score anytime at 11/10 with Ladbrokes: This is always tempting given his goal scoring form this season.