LIVERPOOL welcome Arsenal to Anfield in the Premier League's standout showdown from the third weekend of action. We asked Tom Love (@TomLove_18) to source the best bets.
Liverpool v Arsenal | Saturday 24th August 2019, 17:30 | Sky Sports
This is a fixture that always stands-out, for me. It’s usually extremely open and entertaining, and Saturday evening we could see this theme continue.
I rarely place any great attention on historic head-to-head records but this one is different. The last seven games between the pair have seen a mammoth 35 goals, that’s an average of 5.00 per-game. It has to be said, Liverpool have come out on top on the majority of those contests and they’re rightful 8/15 favourites – their impeccable record at Anfield (W31-D10-L0) further justifies their odds.
It’s not been overly convincing from the European champions though when you delve into the data. The Reds were a tad lucky to come away from Southampton with a win last time out; they actually lost the Expected Goals (xG) battle at St Mary’s 2.64-1.46 and that wasn’t something we saw often last season. Even on opening day against Norwich, the Reds conceded 11 shots, so perhaps they’re a bit more vulnerable at the back after a very impressive campaign last year.
It’s therefore a good job that their front three are firing, they’ve all got on the scoresheet already and that’s very positive news for Jurgen Klopp. What’s more, the trio have an excellent record against Arsenal, especially Roberto Firmino who has eight goals in his last eight against the Gunners. He bagged last week and at 7/5 (SkyBet) he could be a play on Saturday evening.
Let’s take a look at the Gunners then, and I’ll warn you now, it’s not pretty. First of all, their away record at the Big Six sides… You have to go back to 2015 when they beat Manchester City for their last victory, a 20-game run since they’ve beaten an elite side away. Last season they managed just the single clean sheet on the road, and that was against a Watford side who were down to 10 men for the majority of that clash.
I’m not sold on this defence either; a clean sheet against an awful Newcastle side is nothing to brag about and they actually lost the shot count and xG battle at home to Burnley last week, which shows they’re giving up chances. If they continue to do so then Liverpool have the clinical finishers to punish them.
Arsenal’s record at Anfield doesn’t inspire confidence either; they’ve conceded three or more on their last four visits to Merseyside. The past six meetings at Anfield have all seen Over 3.5 Goals land, therefore it’s no surprise to see the Asian goal line set at 3.25.
Instead of punting on that high line, I’ll combine the home win with Over 2.5 Goals which is a very respectable 10/11 with Coral. All the stats point to a Liverpool win in a goal-heavy game, and Arsenal will be a threat going forward as they always are. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will try use his pace and get in behind the high defensive line that Klopp’s troops utilise, however the home side should still outscore the guests.
Liverpool to win and Both Teams To Score is another viable selection at 13/8 but the aforementioned punt gets the 3-0, 4-0, 5-0 scenarios on side too.
I’ve also found a 13/8 shot that appeals in SkyBet’s Request-A-Bet market and that is for Liverpool to score 2+ goals, Liverpool to win 5+ corners, ad Arsenal to collect 20+ Booking Points. I’ve covered the goals angle enough but Liverpool at home average easily over four corners per-game and with their attacking intent it’s no surprise.
Arsenal have been a card-heavy team in recent years; the Gunners picked up three cautions against Burnley and three the week before at Newcastle. Given the step up in opposition, they could collect even more here.
Liverpool, on the flip side of that, are very well disciplined with just the one card for them this season and it’s a theme that ran through last term as well. The disparity between cautions of these two really stands out and I’m all over the 4/5 from Bet365 on Arsenal -0.5 on the Asian Handicap cards. This bet effectively means that if the visitors pick up more cards than Liverpool we have ourselves a winner. The same bet is around 4/7 elsewhere.