CHRIS Graham (@chrisgraham79) shares his view on the big match this week as Arsenal travel to Anfield.
Liverpool v Arsenal | Saturday 17:30 | BT Sport 1
“How’s your year been so far, Arsene?”. “Don’t ask, Jurgen! How about you?”. “Yeah, just as bad as yours”. If Messrs Klopp and Wenger share a vino after this game you can’t imagine either of them will be exuding too much bonhomie.
Yes, it’s been a testing 2017 so far for both men as they’ve seen their teams title ambitions extinguished and in Wenger’s case his job under serious threat.
Arsenal haven’t played since since their far from fluent win over Sutton and it’s been three weeks since they played in the Premier League. The stench of their 5-1 shellacking in Munich still hangs over the club though and it’s fair to say it’s not a happy place just now.
We all thought Liverpool’s year had been repaired after a brilliant win over Tottenham three weeks ago, but even after a 16 day break they were completely outbattled and outfought by the
Snakes Foxes of Leicester on Monday night.
Sides to show some grit
So what now? Well I expect both sides to show some grit here. Another defeat for either of them would deepen their concerns further and do serious damage to their Top 4 hopes.
Liverpool tend to come to the party in these kind of games. As well as being one of only two sides to beat champions Leicester in the league last season, the Anfield outfit are P19 W8 D10 L1 with Jurgen Klopp at the helm against the current Top 6.
It’s a formidable record and Arsene Wenger’s equivalent figures of P13 W2 D6 L5 since the German’s appointment simply don’t measure up.
With both sides under pressure here I’m going to go for goals. Neither sides are comfortable playing it cool and there should be an aggression at Anfield on Saturday night.
Strong goals stats
Liverpool have scored in 13 of their last 14 Premier League games, have a big game record as discussed and with 55 league goals sit joint top of the scoring charts. On those stats it seems inconceivable that they’ll fail to penetrate on Saturday.
Middlesbrough, West Brom and Southampton have conceded less than Liverpool so that certainly gives hope to the North London side. October was the last time Arsenal failed to score in the Premier League and they’ll be keen to make it 17 in a row on Saturday.
Our new sponsors 888 Sport are offering 8/11 on Over 2.5 Goals in this match and it seems a no-brainer when looking at the profile of these sides. To bulk it up further, the bet has paid out in six of the last seven meetings.
Liverpool v Arsenal – Over 2.5 Goals (8/11 888 Sport)