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This match won’t be an easy one for Arsenal

Last updated: November 30, 2015 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Saturday, 3pm
Venue: The Emirates Stadium
Coverage: Sky Sports 1, BBC 5 Live
Home form: DWLDL
Away form: WWLLW
Last season: 0-0
Competition: The Premier League

The Gunners surely won’t have a pleasant afternoon at The Emirates Stadium against The Black Cats. Maybe if both teams had met a month ago we could easily predict an Arsenal win with no pressure, but now The Black Cats have won 3 of their last 5 Premiership games and seem to be super confident before their visit to London. In addition, Sunderland prefer playing on the counter-attack which is better when playing against a stronger opponent.

Furthermore, Arsenal’s players aren’t on their best form. For instance, The Gunners have won only 1 game in their last 5 matches (all competitions). Moreover there are 7 injured key players for Arsenal and 2 players are on Sunderland’s injury list.

But, history is on Arsenal’s side. The Gunners have won 36 of 68 home games against Sunderland. The Black Cats haven’t achieved a victory in London since 1983, when they won 1-2. Since then, Arsenal have won 11 home games and have finished with a draw on 5 occasions. The question is can Sam Allardyce’s team take home all three points from The Emirates Stadium?


Team News

Jermain Defoe, who left the pitch against Stoke in the 31st minute will surely miss the match vs. The Gunners.

Seb Larsson is the other big omission in Sunderland’s squad. The Swedish international player has recently received an injury and won’t take part in the match.

‘The heart’ of Arsenal’s midfield – Francis Coquelin has received a knee ligament injury and will be fit in February. His injury is one reason for Arsenal’s poor results.

Alexis Sanchez is having a hamstring problem and will be absent for the match against Sunderland. The Chilean has scored 6 goals this season and is one of Wenger’s key players.

Quotes of the week

arsenen wenger from arsenal Arsene Wenger (Arsenal) : “His (Alexis’) style is an explosive, committed style.”

Sam Allardyce Sam Allardyce (Sunderland) : “We might be out of the bottom three, but it’s still relegation (in terms of) points per game played and we have got to make sure we continue to lessen that gap.”


Expected line-ups:

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Arsenal (4-1-4-1): Cech, Gibbs, Monreal, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Flamini, Oezil, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Campbell, Cazorla, Giroud.
Subs Ospina, Ramsey, Chambers, Bellerin, Debuchy, Gabriel, Iwobi
Injured: Rosicky, Wilshere, Welbeck, Arteta, Walcott, Sanchez, Coquelin.
Doubtful:
Not available:
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Sunderland (4-4-2): Pantilimon, Kaboul, Coates, O’Shea, van Aanholt, Lens, Cattermole, Johnson, M’Vila, Watmore, Fletcher.
Subs Mannone, Rodwell, Borini, Jordi Gomez, Jones, Matthews, Toivonen
Injured: Defoe, Larsson
Doubtful:
Not available:

Key Battle

cazorla Cazorla this season
Games Minutes Goals Shots per game Assists MotM Yellows Reds
14 1205 0 1,6 3 1 2 1
steven fletcher Fletcher this season
Games Minutes Goals Shots per game Assists MotM Yellows Reds
8 (5) 810 4 1,5 0 1 0 0

So far this season

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Arsenal this season Sunderland this season
4 League Position 17
3 (5) (at home) Wins (away) 2 (1)
5-2 vs. Leicester Biggest win 3-0 vs. Newcastle
2 (1) (at home) Draws (away) 2 (1)
1 (2) (at home) Losses (away) 3 (5)
0-2 to West Ham and Chelsea Biggest Defeat 2-6 to Everton
Giroud (7) Top scorer Defoe, Fletcher (4)
Oezil (11) Assist Leader M’Vila (3)
Y15, R2 Discipline Y29, R2
3 Failures to score 5
6 Clean Sheets 3
6 Both Teams to Score Games 6
7 Over 2.5 Games 7
7 Under 2.5 Games 7
  • Sunderland won in two consecutive Premiership games (1-0 vs. Palace and 2-0 vs. Stoke). Moreover, The Black Cats kept a clean sheet, which shows a great improvement in their defensive play.
  • Arsenal haven’t lost a home Premiership match since the opening day of the season, when The Gunners lost 0-2 to West Ham.
  • The last match between these two teams finished with a 0-0 draw at The Emirates Stadium. There has been 16 more draws in the history of the ‘Head to Head’ matches.
  • Sunderland have lost 5 of 7 away games this season. Their biggest defeat was against Everton, when The Black Cats lost 2-6.

Head to Head

Last 5 meetings between the two sides
Date Competition Game Result First Goal-scorer
20/05/15 The Premier League Arsenal 0-0 Sunderland
25/10/14 The Premier League Sunderland 0-2 Arsenal Sánchez 30′
22/02/14 The Premier League Arsenal 4-1 Sunderland O. Giroud 5′
14/09/13 The Premier League Sunderland 1-3 Arsenal O. Giroud 11′
09/02/13 The Premier League Sunderland 0-1 Arsenal Cazorla 36′