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Superb Arsenal seeking to extend their lead at the top against out-of-sorts Leeds
Arsenal to win 3-1
Tournament: Premier League 2022-2023 | Venue: Leeds, Elland RoadBet Now
For all the people that continue to suggest that Manchester City will ‘walk the league,’ Arsenal continue to offer a credible alternative this season.
Mikel Arteta’s men continue to come out on top of almost every challenge thrown at them. Other than the defeat to Manchester United, in which they actually played well, they have won every other game.
Those fixtures have included impressive wins over Tottenham and Liverpool to keep the Gunners at the top of the table, ahead of a rampant City who are breathing down their necks.
They’ll need a win here to stay at the top, in all likelihood.
Leeds have fallen away after their positive reaction to appointing Jesse Marsch as manager. Marsch seemed like a step up from Marcelo Bielsa, but their inconsistency has been there for all to see this season.
Sure, the Yorkshire side have beaten Chelsea this season, but a win of that scale is unlikely to be repeated here.
Reasons to be cheerful:
Sinisterra available to return after suspension
Leeds are unbeaten at Elland Road this season
Reasons to be fearful:
Just two points earned from the last 15 available
Winless in their past five home games against Arsenal
While many found the start of Jesse Marsch’s reign at Leeds promising, groups of supporters are now worried about the direction he is taking the club.
As Leeds hover in 14th place, they will be looking over their shoulders at the teams beneath them.
The likes of Palace, Villa, Southampton, and Wolves all have expectations to climb the table and Leeds won’t want to be the team that replaces them several places lower.
Since that thumping win over Chelsea, the Whites have drawn two and lost three of their next five games, a run that needs to change quickly. Positively, they are yet to lose at home this season.
They have a poor record against Arsenal, however, losing five of their last six against the Gunners. They’ll need to improve a great deal to change that here.
Star Man – Luis Sinisterra
The Colombian returns here after his one-match suspension, after receiving a red card against Aston Villa. Leeds look a far better side with Sinisterra in the team, as a creative spark and route to goal.
Reasons to be cheerful
Won 11 of their 12 games in all competitions
Confidence is flowing throughout the club
Reasons to be fearful
European commitments could cause fatigue
Haven’t won nine of their first 10 league games since 1903
Arsenal’s run of form is so impressive, they haven’t managed to better it at the start of a season in 120 years. That is their challenge here, to turn eight wins from nine in the league into nine wins from 10.
They have a strong spirit flowing through the squad right now, a togetherness that has not been seen around Arsenal for many years.
The Gunners also have positive memories playing Leeds over the years. The Whites haven’t won any of their last five against them at Elland Road, with Arsenal winning three of those.
Such is the confidence around Arsenal right now, you feel that they can go here and secure a comfortable result.
The only drawback would be their exploits in Europe 72 hours before this. With many of the first-team players involved in that game, they could be a little short of energy.
Star Man – Gabriel Jesus
Arsenal’s number 9 has been a breath of fresh air this season. With the likes of Saka, Martinelli and Odegaard around him, he can achieve wonders this season.
Will be an open game
Both teams will have goalscoring chances
Arsenal’s firepower should be too much
Most fans will look at this fixture and expect Arsenal to earn a comfortable three points, keeping them at the top of the table for another week.
In truth, Arsenal could stretch their lead at the top if Manchester City don’t win their crunch fixture against Liverpool.
Here, Arsenal’s energy and forward firepower should be too much for Leeds to handle. The home side have some talented players, but it would be a shock for them to win this one.
Arsenal to win 3-1
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