Arsenal to continue top-four push
Frank Monkhouse | 10 May 2017
Gunners aim to pass Man Utd
Arsenal go to St Mary’s on Wednesday evening knowing an away win in their Premier League game in hand would see them leapfrog Manchester United into fifth, and go within three points of the top-four.
Yes, that’s the same Arsenal who were written off across the board, and seen scrapping over sixth-place with Everton recently. What a turnaround in fortunes for the boys from north London. If Arsene Wenger does leave at the end of the season, he could depart with his side on a top-four finish, in the Champions League as a result, with the FA Cup back in their possession. Not bad for a gaffer ridiculed by his own supporters for most of the year.
Arsenal ran riot when last here
Of course, it will all count for nothing if Arsenal don’t go to Southampton and get all three points. Win and Wenger could have a case for staying on, the board would certainly find it difficult to cut ties, lose and there will be a clamour of fans saying I told you so.
Recent meetings between these sides suggest an away win is a real possibility, with Arsenal running riot when last here. The Gunners shot down The Saints on-route to the final of the FA Cup, winning 5-0 at this venue back in January. A double from Welbeck and a Walcott hattrick ran the locals ragged that day. This will be the third meeting of the clubs this season, Arsenal 2-1 ahead going in, boasting a 7-3 aggregate score.
Can The Gunners be trusted?
Welbeck scored an important goal against Man Utd last weekend, and will be trusted by Wenger to provide the firepower again on Wednesday. Coral traders offer 11/2 on the attacker breaking the deadlock, or he can be added to multiples at 9/5 for a goal anytime during the match.
The away win has been tipped by Coral’s odds compilers at Stratford HQ, and punters looking to side with that can get even money. If you’re still struggling to trust Arsenal with your stake, that’s perfectly understandable, they have choked on more than one occasion already this season. Therefore, it’s worth knowing that only one team has scored in each of the last three at this venue, and clicking no in the both to score coupon will earn you a healthy 27/20.
Saints struggling for goals
Southampton have been impressive this year, but on balance of the season as a whole, they’ve not quite lived up to their own high standards. The Saints finished sixth last term, that is way beyond them this time, eighth the best they can hope for.
No one at the club seems willing to break their back to achieve that either, and the team appear to have taken their foot off the gas down the home-straight. Claude Puel’s men are winless in four, back-to-back defeats against Man City and Chelsea followed by a pair of goalless draws vs Liverpool and Hull.
Southampton have failed to score in three of their last four, and supporters of the Arsenal win may want to take a gamble on The Gunners to nil at 3/1.