Premier League commitments must feel like a waste of time for Arsenal at the moment, as they will likely post their worst league finish since 1994/95. Their focus is rightly on the Europa League, and a semi-final clash with Atletico Madrid.
While West Ham appear all but safe from relegation, their final five games are all against teams in the top nine, with three against members of the top six. A probably understrength Arsenal may prove their best chance of securing three invaluable points.
The form guide isn’t on their side though. For all that Arsenal have had a disappointing league season, their home record has been decent, and against the lesser sides it has been impeccable. The Gunners have played 12 home matches against teams currently below them in the table, and they’ve won every time. Arsenal have been largely woeful on the road in 2017/18, but their record at the Emirates makes a home win look inevitable. If you agree, Matchbook have odds of 8/15 for an Arsenal victory.
West Ham have been poor on the road too. Despite only winning two away matches this season, the Hammers have actually taken more points than their expected goals suggest they should have. However, they have drawn the joint-most away games in the division, so with Arsenal distracted a point may not be beyond them. Matchbook are offering 7/2 for the match to end in a stalemate.
Whatever the result, it seems reasonable to assume West Ham will at least get on the score sheet. They may not have won any of their last four matches on the road, but their sequence for scoring in away games currently stands at nine. The Hammers may have only taken two points from their away matches against the top five, but they did score against four of them.
West Ham also lead the Premier League over the past two years when it comes to away matches where both teams have scored. It has also occurred in half of Arsenal’s home league matches in the same period. A ‘yes’ bet in the both teams to score market looks a certainty to pay out, and you can get odds of 5/8 from Redbet for this selection.
As it looks likely both teams will bag a goal on Sunday, it seems reasonable to assume there will be over 2.5 goals in total too. In the five seasons prior to West Ham’s last relegation from the top flight this was a low scoring fixture, with never more than two goals in any of the matches.
However, there has been of at least three goals in four of the five league meetings at the Emirates since the Irons returned to the Premier League. West Ham have played 25 away league games featuring over 2.5 goals in the past two seasons, which is a tally no side in the division can better.
Only three teams have had more home games than Arsenal with at least three goals in the same timeframe, so with all these stats combined the bet here has to be for over 2.5 goals. The odds for this are 1.49 with Bet-at-Home.
The goal scorer market here might be a little tricky, as Arsene Wenger will surely shuffle his pack ahead of Arsenal’s European match on Thursday. One man who is certain to play though is Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, as he is ineligible for the Europa League.
The former Dortmund striker has scored 19 league goals for his two clubs this season, and crucially in light of the venue for this match, 16 of them have been on home turf. Perhaps surprisingly only four of his league goals have been the first of the game, so perhaps go for an anytime scorer bet. 888sport offer 28/11 for the Gabon international to break the deadlock, or 13/19 for him to score at any time.
West Ham’s main goal threat is likely to come from either Marko Arnautovic or Javier Hernandez, though interestingly neither of them have ever scored against Arsenal before. As Arnautovic is more likely to start, and has six goals in his last nine starts for club and country, he looks the man to back. The former Stoke man is 9/4 with 888sport to find the net at some point. This looks like a match which the Gunners will win without keeping a clean sheet, so Arsenal to win and both teams to score is a bet worth investigating and you can get 7/4 with BetBright.
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