Arsenal training ground will be a happier place at present as Arsenal have picked up all ten of their season points across the last four rounds to ease the pressure on manager Mikel Arteta. However, they did struggle against Brighton last time out (0-0) and even though Xhaka will not be featuring in this match because of international duty, Arsenal will hope for better result against the south coast side’s derby rivals, Crystal Palace.
While Arsenal will be mindful of the fact that they failed to win each of the last three home H2Hs (D2, L1), they did find the net at least twice in seven of their previous nine home meetings with Palace. They may well need to score twice again here if they start poorly, as ahead of this round, no side had conceded more goals than Arsenal’s six before half-time.
Even with Arsenal’s poor record before half-time, the ‘Eagles’ could be shot down if their joint league-low return of one first-half goal doesn’t improve. And although Palace have been tough to beat in the Premier League (PL) so far (W1, D4, L2), their return of just one win must be a worry for fans.
Palace’s first ever Monday night PL game was actually a 2-1 defeat to Arsenal back in 1992, and they’ve had a few blue Mondays since, winning just once across their last 13 PL games on this night (W1, D3, L8). The omens don’t look great for Palace then, especially when you consider that Arsenal legend and Palace boss Patrick Vieira is the fourth ex-player to face his former employers as a PL coach, with each of the three before him losing their first game, two by at least a two-goal margin.
Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored in three of his six meetings with Palace, but never won when doing so (D2, L1). Palace’s talisman, Wilfried Zaha, has provided five assists in games against Arsenal, only setting up more goals (six) against Watford.
Arsenal have won their last seven Monday night PL fixtures, averaging 2.14 goals a game across them.
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