A narrow win to nil at QPR can keep HMS Arsenal on course for Europe
Arsenal have been steamrollering their way through the springtime fixture list in unrelenting fashion and an already-relegated QPR should represent less of a spanner-in-the-works than a ratchet with which the Gunners can up the Champions League qualification pressure on North London neighbours Tottenham. Arsene Wenger’s men were short of form when squeaking a 1-0 win at the Emirates in October and Coral go 8/5 about them recording another shut out success at Loftus Road.
A world-class demonstration of the goalkeeper’s art from sometime Brazilian international Julio Cesar was all that stood between Rangers and a hammering in the reverse fixture and demoralised by relegation it would seem they could be in trouble against an Arsenal side that have won six of their last eight games.
However although Arsenal’s reputation as rabbit-slayers is well justified – Southampton, West Ham, Newcastle and Reading (twice) were all given three goal-plus beatings this term – all but one of those results took place at The Emirates. With the exception of the relegated Royals, the Gunners haven’t posted an away win by more than two goals all season, a trend their spring streak hasn’t altered.
Instead the focus has been on graft and resolution, with four of their last six away matches won to-nil – Coral go 8/5 about the Wenger boys continuing that happy trend at Loftus Road. They’ll be aided in pursuit of that goal by an errant R’s attack that has gone three games without succour following Loic Remy’s wonder-strike against Wigan.
When the top sides come to Loftus Road the R’s modus operandi has generally been one of damage limitation, with meritorious draws ground out against Tottenham and Man City and Manchester United allowed only two trips to celebration-city. Given Arsenal’s tendency to keep it tight it may be worth risking Rangers’ self respect granting them a relatively solid performance and under 2.5 goals can be backed at 13/10 with Coral.