Arsenal vs Napoli squad analysis & prediction

Arsenal vs  Napoli  squad analysis & prediction


Arsenal are unbeaten in eight Europa League (EL) matches at the Emirates Stadium, with the Gunners’ sole home defeat in their entire history of post-2009 EL participation being an inconsequential 2-1 reverse to Östersunds FK back in February 2018.

The ‘Gunners’ have emerged victorious with a clean sheet in their last three EL outings here, winning the first half 2-0 and the second 1-0 twice in a row.

Even if Arsenal are to concede first against Napoli, a record of  in EL home matches where they have conceded first bodes well, with both wins yielding a 3-1 scoreline.

Napoli arrive in London with a chequered away record in this season’s EL, winning once and losing once – both times by a 3-1 scoreline.

Given that, there is potential relevance in the fact that the visitors’ last four away trips (in all competitions) have produced over 1.5 goals and seen the first two match goals shared equally.

There should be no lack of action at the start though, with three of Napoli’s four EL games this year seeing them score inside the first 15 minutes of play. Additionally, three of their last four EL away goals (in 2019 alone) have arrived inside the first half-hour.

Players to watch: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was the first and last Arsenal scorer in their most recent EL game here.

Both legs of the previous round saw Napoli’s Arkadiusz Milik score the opening goal for his team inside the first 15 minutes.

Stat attack: Each of Arsenal’s last four competitive home games have seen them win both halves.

Across all competitions and venues, Arsenal have scored first in seven of their last nine matches.

Each of Napoli’s last six games have seen both teams score.

Last matches: ARSENAL

Everton vs Arsenal                          1 : 0
Arsenal vs Newcastle                    2 : 0
Al Nasr vs Arsenal                           2 : 3
Arsenal vs Rennes                          3 : 0
Arsenal vs Manchester Utd        2 : 0

Burnley vs Liverpool Prediction

Burnley vs Liverpool

Burnley vs Liverpool

With only one day of rest, two teams in the top half of the Premier League (PL) go head to head at Turf Moor, where goals have been hard to come by all season. Seven scored and six conceded, that is all the goals Burnley have seen from their ten home matches this season. Making the most of it, those seven goals have seen them register five victories!

As can be deducted from the above, Burnley’s home matches have yielded a measly 1.3 goals per average this season. If there is a team that could change that, however, it is Liverpool. In only ten away games they’ve scored 27 and conceded 20 goals, for a match average of 4.7 goals! No team has scored as many when playing away, and only two sides have conceded more. With clear differences in playing styles, will it be the attack-minded Jurgen Klopp or defensive mastermind Sean Dyche who walks off with three points today?

Liverpool fans have much reason for optimism in 2018. They recently confirmed the signing of Southampton defender Virgil van Dijk, making the big dutch fellow the most expensive defender ever at £75 million.

Players to watch: Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah alone has more direct goal involvements than Burnley have goals this season (18). Fifteen goals and five assists is the tally for the pacey Egyptian so far, only Harry Kane has more PL goals this season.

With Chris Wood still on the physio table, all eyes will be on Ashley Barnes to see if he can provide the goals for Burnley.

Stat attack: Liverpool’s last eight away matches (all competitions) have seen 42 goals – 5.25 on average per match. Burnley drew 2-2 here against Leeds in the Carabao cup, but apart from that there’s been over 2.5 goals in just one of ten games at Turf Moor. Furthermore, just one Burnley match in the last ten have seen both teams score (BTTS). On that theme, just one in the last eight H2H matches have ended with both teams scoring.

Liverpool vs Leicester prediction

Liverpool vs Leicester prediction

Liverpool vs Leicester prediction

Winless at Anfield since May 2000 – a match which also completed Leicester’s last ‘league double’ over Liverpool – Leicester must hope that the Reds defence is as bad as its attack has been superlative. However, it comes as no surprise to see that Liverpool have scored more goals over the past ten league games than any other Premier League team (29), scoring nearly twice as many goals as Leicester in that time.

Liverpool have now won by 5+ goals twice this season. The second of those wins came on Boxing Day, in a rout 5-0 of Swansea, but Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has refused to single anyone out for praise, saying: “If we play like we play in our good moments then the boys will be in good situations. They will all score.”

The Reds are, however, still a long way off breaking the record for the number of PL matches in which they have scored 5+ goals in a season – they are stuck on two right now. The current record was set in 2013/14, when Liverpool scored 5+ goals in no less than six league matches – although the title remained, as ever, elusive

Speaking of records, Liverpool are currently unbeaten in six home matches against Leicester. The historical record is eight unbeaten (1970-1978)

With a return of just one point from the last nine available, Leicester manager Claude Puel knows that his honeymoon period is now over. Claude Puel also appears resigned to losing a once-promising, but now redundant striker in Islam Slimani, recently saying: “It is difficult for me to say what will happen in the transfer window but it is difficult for me and the staff to manage all these players for the same position.”

However, the omens could be good if Leicester somehow have a lead at half-time, having won every league match in 2017-18 when ahead at the break.

AS Romavs Sassuolo

AS Roma vs Sassuolo


AS Roma vs Sassuolo

A Roma side still licking their wounds after the 1-0 loss away to rivals Juventus last round, welcome a Sassuolo side with three wins on the bounce to the Stadio Olimpico as Serie A (SA) approaches the halfway point.

AS Roma vs Sassuolo Head to Head


Despite the loss against Juventus, Roma have had a winning habit lately. They’ve only lost three matches all season and had a streak of nine games without defeat (league games) before the Juve match.

Goals, goals, goals? So far not true for these teams, whose goals per match averages of 2.2 (Sassuolo) and 2.3 (Roma) are ‘bettered’ only by Genoa (2.1) this season. Roma have kept a clean sheet in nine out of 17 games so far this season and have already won 1-0 five times.

Sassuolo have only found the net 12 times in 18 matches and Roma’s Edin Dzeko is close to matching that on his own (eight goals, two assists). The Bosnian striker started the season brilliantly, but has only found the net once in his last ten games. One word of warning for the opposition though, he usually enjoys playing Sassuolo: in three games he has banged in three goals and supplied one assist as well.

Roma captain, Daniele de Rossi, spoke of his team’s recent trouble in front of goal: “It’s a team thing, it’s about details and it’s about providing support to the attacking players. Perhaps we’ve been a bit unlucky or felt a bit tired, but I don’t think there’s a serious problem. We’re not creating so many chances and when the data shows a pattern you can’t point to misfortune. We have some great strikers and they’ll start scoring again. We’ll give them a hand from further back.”

In terms of the H2H, Roma have a strong advantage. Giallorossi have won four of the last six H2H matches, drawing the other two. Since Sassuolo were promoted in 2013, they’ve failed to win even once against Roma in eight matches (W0, D3, L5). There is a quirk here, however, as Roma have only beaten Sassuolo once when playing at home, but won all four away matches! The matches also tend to be intense, with 29 yellow cards (4.83 on average) and three red cards shown in the last six matches.

Fiorentina vs AC Milan

Fiorentina vs AC Milan

Fiorentina vs AC Milan

Two teams with somewhat disappointing results in Serie A (SA) go head to head in Firenze as the year comes to an end. Fiorentina have not lost in the last six league matches, but have failed to get the winner in four of them. AC Milan, on the other hand, come into this game on the back of two very disappointing league defeats against Verona and Atalanta.

Head to Head

Both teams played in the Coppa Italia in midweek. Fiorentina were beaten away against Lazio, while AC took a memorable extra time victory against fierce rivals Inter. Notably, AC played their match one day later than Fiorentina and played 120 minutes – they head into this difficult away match with only two days of rest.

Milan coach Gennaro Gattuso had some thoughts about the importance of the recent derby win ahead of the Fiorentina match: “For these boys, the derby was as important as breathing. This win doesn’t change a lot of things, but it’s a morale booster. It would have been a pity not to deliver what these players have inside them. We can now work more serene and let’s focus on taking home a win in Florence.”

Fiorentina drew 0-0 against Genoa in their last match in front of their own fans – the first time this season they’ve failed to score when playing at home. So far they’ve scored 14 goals in eight home matches, scoring 2+ goals in five of the eight.

Playing away, it’s either or for AC. In nine games, they’ve only drawn once: the famous 2-2 draw against Benevento, where AC became the first team this season to drop points against the forlorn bottom dwellers.

A classic fixture in SA, these teams usually go at it: in the last six H2H matches, there’s been a total of 35 yellow cards (5.83 on average) and one red. Tight and closely fought, the games are short on goals, with an average of 2.0 across those six H2H matches. This SA season, both teams rank among the lower half in terms of yellow cards awarded, but there is one notable difference: Milan players have seen the red card a league high four times, while Fiorentina have only been awarded one.

Tottenham vs Southampton

Tottenham vs Southampton


Tottenham vs Southampton

The first of the eight Boxing Day fixtures in the Premier League (PL) this year is Tottenham vs Southampton. Spurs come into the match after an emphatic 3-0 win away at Burnley – in fact, Harry Kane alone scored as many goals at Burnley’s ground than they had previously conceded in eight games (three).

In terms of the H2H, Tottenham have traditionally had a strong advantage when playing Southampton in London, with five wins in the last six. Christmas spirits? There has been a bit of temperature between the teams recently, with 23 yellow cards 0(3.83 on average) and one red over the last six H2H matches.

Tottenham initially had some adjustment issues with playing their home matches at Wembley, and failed to win any of their three first home matches of the season. Since then, however, they have had a healthy five wins and a draw. Furthermore, only Manchester United and Burnley (three), have conceded less than Spurs (six) at home so far this season.

Spurs at home and Southampton on their travels share a penchant for matches with few goals. At Wembley, Spurs have seen six of nine matches finish under 2.5 matches so far this season – Southampton have seen the same in five of eight away matches.

Including the three at sports, Kane has now netted 15 PL goals this season, and is top scorer in the league tied with Mohamed Salah. He’s bagged 2+ goals in six league games already this season. He now has 36 league goals in 2017 – tied with Alan Shearer for the most PL goals in a calendar year. With matches still to come this year, he may well make the record his own against Southampton, who he has scored two goals against in nine matches.

The striker himself makes no secret of his desire to claim the record, and seems to be full of confidence as the Boxing Day fixtures approach, stating: “We wanted the second goal to kill the game and when I scored it, I thought ‘right, let’s get the hat-trick’. I was happy to put that one away, I’m really pleased. I can now go into the (Southampton) game on Tuesday and try to get the record, that would be a great achievement.”

Sportpesa MJP Prediction for 16th Dec 2017

Date Time Match Prediction
1  16/12/17  18:00  PRESTON vs SHEFFIELD UTD X2
2  16/12/17  18:00  BRIGHTON vs BURNLEY 2
3  16/12/17  18:00  MILLWALL vs MIDDLESBROUGH 1
4  16/12/17  18:00  BIRMINGHAM vs QPR 1X
5  16/12/17  18:00 IPSWICH vs READING
6  16/12/17  18:00 DERBY vs ASTON VILLA
7  16/12/17  18:00 SUNDERLAND vs FULHAM
8  16/12/17  18:00  GILLINGHAM vs BRISTOL ROVERS
9  16/12/17  18:00  NORTHAMPTON vs WALSALL
10  16/12/17  18:15  ATHLETIC BILBAO vs REAL SOCIEDAD
11  16/12/17  20:00  STANDARD LIEGE vs KAA GENT
 12  16/12/17  22:00 KORTRIJK vs MECHELEN
 13  16/12/17  22:00 TROYES vs AMIENS
14 17/12/17  18:15 CELTA VIGO vs VILLARREAL
15 17/12/17 20:00 BENEVENTO vs SPAL
16 17/12/17 20:30 LAS PALMAS Uvs ESPANYOL
17 17/12/17 22:45 ATALANTA vs LAZIO

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Everton have picked up more points per game at Selhurst Park than at any other ground (2.125) in the Premier League (PL) era.
Since 1992, Everton have also picked up more points at Selhurst Park than when playing Crystal Palace at Goodison.
Palace manager Roy Hodgson’s PL record against Everton is none too clever: W4, D2, L7.
Everton are unbeaten in 5 matches against Palace, the first time such a sequence has been seen since the sides first met in March 1907.
On no less than 3 out of a possible 8 occasions in the PL era, each side has won at the other’s ground in the same season.
Palace’s last home win over Everton came in October 1994, when Andy Preece scored the decisive goal in a 1-0 win.
Matches between the sides at Selhurst Park are traditionally low scoring, with the last 4 encounters there each producing under 1.5 goals

Arsenal vs Tottenham

Arsenal vs Tottenham

Arsenal have won their last 10 home games in the Premier League (PL), keeping a clean sheet in 7 of them, with their 2-2 draw against Man City at the beginning of April being the last time they dropped points at the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal vs Tottenham

The Gunners are on their longest ever winless run against Tottenham in the PL, having drawn 4 and lost 2 of their last 6 matches against them.

Arsene Wenger’s side have won their opening 5 home games of a PL season for the first time since 2009/10 and could make it 6 victories for the first time since 2007/08.

Tottenham have won 6 of their last 7 away matches in the PL, scoring a total of 25 goals in those victories, which is an average of more than 4 goals per game, but they failed to find the net in their 1-0 defeat to Man Utd at Old Trafford before the international break.

Harry Kane has scored in all 5 of his PL north London derby appearances, netting 6 goals in total, with only Emmanuel Adebayor (8) and Robert Pires (7) scoring more in this fixture in the PL era. If Kane scores in this game, he will become the first player to score in 6 consecutive north London derbies.

Mauricio Pochettino has yet to lose a north London derby, winning 2 and drawing 4, though all 3 of his visits to Arsenal as Spurs manager have been draws.