Premier League Preview and Prediction: Arsenal vs Sunderland

Competition: Premier League – Arsenal vs. Sunderland

Venue: Emirates Stadium – Wednesday, May 20th – 19:45 BST (14:45 ET)

Match Odds: Arsenal 2/7 – Draw 9/2 – Sunderland 9/1

Match Preview

Arsenal welcome Sunderland to the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday night for the penultimate game of the Premier League season with both sides in need of just one more point to secure very different objectives.

The Gunners are in search of one more point to ensure they finish in third place above Manchester United and avoid the Champions League qualification playoff game, while a point for Sunderland will guarantee their top flight status for another season.

Theo Walcott‘s deflected cross off Tyler Blackett rescued a vital point for Arsenal at Old Trafford on Sunday and kept them two points clear of fourth-placed Manchester United coming into this game-in-hand.

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Arsenal’s fantastic run of eight straight wins has been halted by a run of four games with just one victory (D2, L1), although Arsene Wenger has still done enough to guide his side to a Champions League finish for the 17th consecutive season.

The Gunners have won all but one of their home games against sides in the bottom 11 of the Premier League table this season – a 2-2 draw with Hull City back in October being the only points they’ve dropped against the lower league teams at home.

Sunderland arrive in London having lost just one of their last six games (W3, D2) and their 0-0 draw at home to Leicester last weekend extended their current mini-unbeaten run to four games.

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Despite the good run, Dick Advocaat will know there is still work to do and the final two games are away at Arsenal and Chelsea, so they may be relying on Hull City failing to win against Manchester United on the final day in order for them to survive.

Arsenal won the reverse fixture 2-0 at the Stadium of Light thanks to two goals from Alexis Sanchez and have won the last four meeting between the two sides.

Team News

Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny will face a late assessment as he is suffering with the flu, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Danny Welbeck, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Debuchy are all unavailable because of injury.

Sunderland will be without the injured Billy Jones, Jordi Gomez, Wes Brown, Jack Rodwell and Ricardo Alvarez.

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Key Points

Arsenal’s last five: W/D/W/L/D

Sunderland’s last five: L/D/W/W/D

Key Stat: Sunderland haven’t won away at Arsenal in the league since November 1983 when they beat the Gunners 2-1 at Highbury.

Key Player: Aaron Ramsey – The Welshman doesn’t stop running and his work-rate can’t be faulted even though he’s playing out of position on the right side of midfield.

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Score Prediction

Arsenal 2-1 Sunderland – The Gunners’ home advantage will help them just edge past the Black Cats who will go into the final day with it all to play for.

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Premier League Preview and Prediction: Manchester United vs Arsenal

Competition: Premier League – Manchester United vs. Arsenal

Venue: Old Trafford – Sunday, May 17th – 16:00 BST (11:00 ET)

Match Odds: Man United 6/4 – Draw 23/10 – Arsenal 7/4

Match Preview

Manchester United entertain Arsenal on Sunday in a showdown fixture in the battle for third place. United are currently fourth on 68 points. Arsenal are two points ahead in third but have played a game less. If the Gunners win this one they cannot be caught by United and will therefore guarantee a top three finish.

United come into the game off the back of a 2-1 win away at Crystal Palace which ended their three game losing streak.

Louis Van Gaal’s men have all but secured Champions League football for next season but will do everything possible to avoid the burden of the qualifying rounds for finishing fourth, and a win against Arsenal would help them on their way to a top three finish.

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Arsene Wenger has added importance to the tie and is hoping to ensure his side avoid the Champions League qualifiers early next season.

Arsenal come into this after suffering a shock defeat at home to Swansea City on Monday night which was their first loss in ten games.

The Gunners haven’t won at Old Trafford in the Premier League since 2006 and will be hoping to put an end to that run.

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This game has the potential to be a classic and with so much at stake for both clubs it will be interesting to see how it all unfolds.

United fans will expect a result in their final home game of the campaign but Arsenal have already won there this season in the quarterfinals of the FA Cup, though the Red Devils did win the reverse league fixture at the Emirates by the same scoreline.

Team News

United have suffered a huge blow as captain, Wayne Rooney, is set to miss out. Louis Van Gaal’s side have the longest injury list in the league with the likes of Michael Carrick, Marcos Rojo, Phil Jones and Rafael all set to miss out. Robin Van Persie could be in line to start against his former club but is currently unwell so his situation will be monitored over the weekend.

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Arsenal have three injury concerns ahead of this one as Danny Welbeck, Mathieu Debuchy and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are all ruled out. Wenger could be set to make a few changes after Monday’s performance against Swansea, but given that was a shock result he will not want to upset the balance of his side ahead of such a big game.

Key Points

Manchester United’s last five: W/L/L/L/W

Arsenal’s last five: W/W/D/W/L

Key Stat: It has been nine years since Wenger’s side won a league game at Old Trafford and he has a great chance to put that trend to bed this weekend.

Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – Arsenal’s goal-machine has the chance to stamp his mark on the Old Trafford faithful after a superb first season in England.

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Score Prediction

Manchester United 2-2 Arsenal – A fixture which rarely fails to disappoint will live up to expectation this weekend. United’s injury woes will hamper their chances of winning and Wenger will not let his side blow their third spot easily. Expect goals but the shares may be spoiled with little to separate them.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Hull vs Arsenal

Competition: Premier League – Hull City vs. Arsenal 

Venue: KC Stadium – Monday, May 4th – 20:00 BST (15:00 ET)

Match Odds: Hull 4/1 – Draw 11/4 – Arsenal 3/4

Match Preview

Hull City host Arsenal in this week’s Monday night fixture in a game which is of equal importance for both sides but for opposite reasons.

Hull sit just a point above the relegation zone following the weekend’s fixtures and will need to give themselves breathing space sooner rather than later as sides around them are picking up points.

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Having won their last two matches without conceding a goal, Steve Bruce’s men will feel confident they can deliver some more points on Monday night against the Gunners.

Hull City’s home record in the Premier League: P16 – W5 – D4 – L7

Arsenal’s title dreams are over after Chelsea won the league on Sunday, but Arsene Wenger’s side will still need to maintain their current form as they look to secure an automatic Champions League place.

Arsenal haven’t lost a league game since early February, and run of nine games, and have won their last four on the road. They also have a place in the FA Cup final once again as they look to retain their trophy so there is lots to play for.

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Arsenal will be overwhelming favourites to win here seeing as they are undefeated in their last nine meetings with Hull, winning eight of those.

The Tigers drew 2-2 in the reverse fixture back in October but lost at the Emirates in the FA Cup in January.

Arsenal’s away record in the Premier League: P17 – W9 – D3 – L5

Hull come into the game off the back of a 1-0 win against Liverpool last Tuesday and will be hoping to seal all three points in this one too.

Team News

Hull City: Andrew Robertson and Robert Snodgrass are both out. There will be late fitness tests for Mohamed Diame, Nikica Jelavic and Curtis Davies. But Steve Bruce looks set to name the same team for a third straight week.

Arsenal: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is out. Mathieu Debuchy, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini are all doubts. Danny Welbeck and Gabriel could come into the side.

Key Points

Hull’s last five: L/L/L/W/W

Arsenal’s last five: W/W/W/W/D

Key Stat: The last time Hull beat Arsenal at home was April 1915. Can they end a 100 year wait on Monday?

Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – The superstar winger has had a superb season so far and he might prove to be the difference once again.

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Score Prediction

Hull City 0-3 Arsenal – The Gunners to prove too strong for Hull as they pick up another win to move five points clear of United in fourth. Hull need points but this one will be too much of a challenge and they’ll be looking to next weekend’s meeting with Burnley for points.

FA Cup Preview and Prediction: Reading vs Arsenal

Competition: FA Cup semi-final – Reading vs. Arsenal

Venue: Wembley Stadium – Saturday, April 18 – 17:20 BST (12:20 ET)

Match Odds: Reading 12/1 – Draw 5/1 – Arsenal 1/4

Match Preview

Reading and Arsenal clash at Wembley Stadium for the first FA Cup semi-final on Saturday evening as the Gunners look to reach a second successive final and continue the defence of their title.

Reading are undoubtedly major underdogs coming into the game as they sit eighteenth in the Championship and many will struggle to see how they can overturn Arsenal, but the beauty of this competition is that anything can happen.

Few would’ve predicted Bradford winning at Chelsea or Middlesbrough winning at Manchester City in the fourth round, so the Royals can approach the game with a nothing to lose attitude.

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Steve Clarke’s side are without a win in five games in all competitions and their last victory came in the FA Cup quarter-final replay against Bradford – the Royals have won just two of their last 12 (D5, L5). Reading have also seen off Huddersfield, Cardiff and Derby in their run to the semi-final.

Arsenal are the FA Cup holders and arguably the best team in the country right now after a run of eight straight wins has lifted them to second in the Premier League – the Gunners have also won 15 out of their last 16 domestic fixtures.

Arsene Wenger‘s last taste of defeat in the FA Cup was against Championship opposition in February 2013 when Blackburn Rovers won 1-0 in a fifth round tie at the Emirates Stadium. Arsenal are undefeated in 10 FA Cup ties since then, including victories over Hull, Brighton, Middlesbrough and Manchester United in this season’s competition.

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It will be the Arsenal manager’s tenth FA Cup semi-final and should the Gunners go on to lift the famous trophy once again, they will become the most successful club in the history of the competition – they currently share the record for most FA Cup titles (11) with Manchester United.

The last time these two sides met, Arsenal ran out as 4-1 winners in a Premier League game back in March 2013. The last cup meeting between the two was that enthralling 7-5 League Cup comeback win for Arsenal in October 2012 at the Madejski Stadium after Reading had taken a 4-0 lead.

The Wembley stage is set and the FA Cup semi-final is always a great day for both sets of players and fans alike. Arsenal are heavy favourites, but Reading will relish the occasion that marks their best achievement in the competition since 1927 as they attempt to reach their first ever FA Cup final.

Team News

Reading will be delighted that striker Pavel Pogrebnyak will be available after struggling with a knee injury, although they will be without the on-loan Nathan Ake and Kwesi Appiah as they are both cup tied.

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Arsenal have rarely had so many options at their disposal in recent years as only Mikel Arteta and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are unavailable with injury. Wojciech Szczesny will start in goal as he continues his role as the ‘cup goalkeeper’, while Wenger could also rotate on-pitch slightly from the team that faced Burnley last weekend. Mathieu Debuchy and Jack Wilshere are both fully fit and available for selection.

Key Points

Reading’s last five in all competitions: L/D/D/D/L

Arsenal’s last five in all competitions: W/W/W/W/W

Key Stat: Arsenal have won all 12 of their previous matches against Reading, so the Royals will be making history if they win this one.

Key Player: Mesut Ozil – The German has put in some excellent performances in the last few months and on a big Wembley pitch, this is the type of game where he could really pull the strings and open up Reading’s defence.

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Score Prediction

Arsenal 2-0 Reading – The FA Cup is a magical competition but it’s so hard to see how a struggling Reading side are going to upset the rhythm of an Arsenal team that can’t stop winning. The Gunners will be made to work hard but should ultimately win the game comfortably.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Burnley vs Arsenal

Competition: Premier League – Burnley vs. Arsenal

Venue: Turf Moor – Saturday, April 12 – 17:30 BST (12:30 ET)

Match Odds: Burnley 5/1 – Draw 16/5 – Arsenal 8/15

Match Preview

Burnley host the in-form Arsenal in the Premier League‘s evening game at Turf Moor this Saturday as their battle against relegation continues.

Burnley have just one win in their last ten games, but it has to be noted that was against the champions Manchester City at Turf Moor and they come into this game off the back off a 0-0 draw against Tottenham.

The Clarets are currently sitting 19th in the Premier League table and are running out of time to save themselves from the drop.

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With every team in the bottom five on the edge, their fight will still have many twists and turns but they have to start picking up points and it doesn’t come much tougher than this.

Arsenal are the in-form team in the league after winning their last seven on the bounce, which has made them Chelsea’s closest rivals for the title and they’ve pushed themselves up into second in the table.

Arsene Wenger‘s men have clicked into form at a vital stage of the season and this run will certainly help them attract big names in the summer.

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Sean Dyche‘s men have to take the same approach to this tie as they did from their astonishing win over Man City almost a month ago and they need to make their home advantage count during this run-in if they are to stay up.

It should be a tough, hard-fought tie with both sides having so much to play for at this stage of the season.

Team News

Burnley are set to have five sidelined as Steven Reid, Ross Wallace, Dean Marney, Kevin Long and Matt Taylor are all recovering from injuries. Sean Dyche will be hoping forward George Boyd can produce another moment of magic to continue his latest stint of giant killing.

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Arsenal will be without Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, while Laurent Koscielny and Wojciech Szczęsny will be fighting to be fit following minor injuries. Wenger will need his goal-machine Olivier Giroud to keep the goals coming as he has seven in his last six. His partnership with Alexis Sanchez has proved to be a hit.

Key Points

Burnely’s last five: L/L/W/L/D

Arsenal’s last five: W/W/W/W/W

Key Stat: Winning Streak – Arsenal’s seven-game winning streak has seen them climb up into second and a push for the title is an aim even this late on. Their next game against Chelsea is possibly the biggest Premier League tie of the season.

Key Player: Olivier Giroud – An easy choice. Giroud is the man in form and now has a better strike-rate this season than fellow forward Alexis Sanchez. The Frenchman has notched an impressive 14 goals in 20 games.

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Score Prediction

Burnley 1-3 Arsenal – Arsenal’s momentum will overpower a spirited Burnley side fighting for their Premier League status.

FA Cup Preview and Prediction: Manchester United vs Arsenal

Competition: FA Cup Quarter-Final – Manchester United vs Arsenal

Venue: Old Trafford – Monday 9th March – 19:45 GMT (14:45 ET)

Match Odds: Man United 7/5 – Draw 5/2 – Arsenal 19/10

Match Preview

Arsenal travel to Old Trafford to face Manchester United in the final FA Cup quarter-final tie of the weekend on Monday night. With both sides fighting for a top four spot in the league, this tie acts as a happy distraction.

We’re expecting both Louis Van Gaal and Arsene Wenger to deploy full-strength sides as they both pursue the trophy. But both will be wary that any cup run must not affect their league form with just 10 games left.

Manchester United are the favorites heading into this one having won their last six meetings with Arsenal at Old Trafford in all competitions.

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With United not playing in Europe this season there really is no excuse for them finishing outside the top four. And with the size of the club, United should be challenging on all fronts.

This is the furthest the Red Devils have got in the FA Cup for four seasons and both sides know that a place at Wembley is in line for whoever can advance to the semi-finals.

But with the injury to Robin Van Persie, are United strong enough to beat an Arsenal side that has won ten of their last twelve in all competitions?

Holders Arsenal will see this as a free hit. With a poor record at Old Trafford over the years (including an 8-2 drubbing in 2011), Arsenal are the underdogs in this tie.

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Arsenal haven’t beaten Manchester United since May 2011, and will do well to break that run on Monday night in what will be a tough game, though a draw would earn the Gunners a replay at the Emirates.

Both sides boast some great attacking players, but can both be fragile defensively, so we’re expecting goals.

This will be the fourteenth FA Cup meeting between the two sides but Manchester United have dominated the most recent ties, winning the last two at Old Trafford without conceding a goal.

Team News

Manchester United: Luke Shaw (hamstring) and Robin Van Persie (ankle) are ruled out. Jonny Evans starts his six-match suspension so Phil Jones is likely to fill in at centre-back alongside Chris Smalling. Wayne Rooney is likely to continue playing as a striker in the absence of Van Persie.

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Arsenal: Jack Wilshere (ankle), Mikel Arteta (ankle), Mathieu Flamini (hamstring), Mathieu Debuchy (shoulder) and Abou Diaby (calf) are all out. Gabriel Paulista (hamstring) is a doubt while Wojciech Szczesny and Nacho Monreal will face late fitness tests.Aaron Ramsey could return to the starting lineup while Olivier Giroud is set to play as the lone striker once again.

Key Points

Manchester United’s last five in all competitions: W/W/L/W/W

Arsenal’s last five in all competitions: W/W/L/W/W

Key Stat: Arsenal haven’t beaten Manchester United in the FA Cup in normal time since February 2003.

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Key Player: Santi Cazorla – Since being deployed in a more central role, Cazorla has been sensational. Expect him to be key on Monday night.

Score Prediction

Manchester United 3-2 Arsenal – We’re expecting a high scoring affair and an instant classic that could set the tone for both teams going into the final stretch of the season. Home advantage should see United edge it.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Arsenal vs Everton

Competition: Premier League – Arsenal vs Everton

Venue: Emirates Stadium – Sunday, March 1st – 14:05 (09:05 ET)

Match Odds: Arsenal 8/15 – Draw 3/1 – Everton 5/1

Match Preview

Arsenal host Everton at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday afternoon looking to continue their good run of form in the Premier League which has propelled them into third.

Everton haven’t won in three in the league but tasted European victory with a 3-1 win against BSC Young Boys on Thursday in the Europa League and will be looking to extend their unbeaten run against Arsenal to six games in the league. The two clubs drew 2-2 in the reverse fixture at Goodison Park in August.

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Arsenal come into the game off the back of a disappointing 3-1 loss to AS Monaco in the Champions League on Wednesday at the Emirates. Outplayed by the French side, Arsenal will want to forget about it and secure the three points on Sunday in front of their own fans.

With eight wins in ten in all competitions, Arsenal are still in a good run of form and are on course for yet another top four finish despite the fierce competition for Champions League football at the top of the Premier League.

Arsenal’s Premier League home record: Played 12 – Won 8 – Drawn 3 – Lost 1

Interestingly, Arsenal have scored first in their last six Premier League games, and they could do with a fast start against the Toffees to settle any nerves.

Everton cannot be underestimated this weekend though as they could bring their European form to the Premier League and cause an upset on Sunday.

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Everton will be buoyant after their two-legged demolition of Young Boys as they won 7-2 on aggregate and Roberto Martinez’s men will want to snatch all three points come the weekend.

Everton’s Premier League away record: Played 13 – Won 3 – Drawn 3 – Lost 7

It has been a poor season for Everton compared to last, and the league table proves that as they sit in twelfth after 26 games and are just six points off the relegation zone.

Their Premier League form dictates the reason for this as they have only registered one win in their last ten matches.

Team News

Arsenal – Mathieu Debuchy (shoulder) and Mikel Arteta (ankle) are still not match fit and Jack Wilshere has undergone surgery for ankle discomfort. Aaron Ramsey could return to the side as he nears a return from a hamstring injury while Arsene Wenger could drop David Ospina, Per Mertesacker and Olivier Giroud after poor performances against Monaco on Wednesday.

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Everton – Aiden McGeady is still sidelined with a knee injury while Steven Pienaar (Knee), Leon Osman (foot) and Bryan Oviedo (hamstring) will also miss out. Gareth Barry returns from suspension and is likely to start along with Leighton Baines who was rested for the midweek game against Young Boys.

Key Points

Arsenal’s last five in the Premier League: WWLWW

Everton’s last five in the Premier League: DWDLD

Key Stat: Arsenal are unbeaten in their last 20 meetings at home to Everton in all competitions. Their last home defeat to the Toffees came 19 years ago.

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Key Player: Alexis Sanchez – Summer transfer sensation, Sanchez has been a revelation for Arsenal this season and at times has got them out of massive holes on his own. Expect him to be the difference once again.

Score Prediction

Arsenal 2-1 Everton – No shocks in this one, Everton will put up a good fight but expect Arsenal to get back to winning ways with their seventh straight league win at the Emirates.

Premier League Preview and Prediction: Arsenal vs Aston Villa

Competition: Premier League

Venue: Emirates Stadium – Sunday, February 1 – 13:30

Match Odds: Arsenal 2/9 – Draw 9/2 – Aston Villa 14/1

Arsenal welcome Aston Villa to the Emirates Stadium on Sunday afternoon as the Gunners look to continue their recent good form in the hunt for a top-four finish.

The North London side are on a run of four straight wins, which represents their best period of consecutive victories the season, and have lost just once in their last ten (in all competitions).

They’ve also only lost one game out of ten when playing on home soil in this campaign and haven’t lost a game against a team from the bottom half of the table, home or away (W 7, D 3).

Arsene Wenger has said that new signing Gabriel Paulista could be in the squad after the 24-year-old centre back joined from Spanish side Villarreal this week.

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Arsenal’s home record: Played 10 – Won 6 – Drawn 3 – Lost 1

Aston Villa have very different aspirations for the rest of the season, and their only priority will be ensuring they don’t find themselves in a struggle to avoid relegation, but it may be too late as they sit just three points above the drop zone.

They do have a good record when playing at the Emirates Stadium though, having won three times at Arsenal since their move from Highbury, as well as picking up two draws. They’ve lost just three times out of eight visits.

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Having said that, they haven’t scored a Premier League goal for five consecutive games now, and have managed just one goal in their last seven – a very worrying trend.

It’s a well documented fact that Villa have struggled desperately to score goals, with just 11 all season. To put it into perspective, Arsenal’s star-man Alexis Sanchez has notched 12 on his own.

Aston Villa’s away record: Played 11 – Won 3 – Drawn 2 – Lost 6

On paper, it looks as though it should be an easy home victory, but Arsenal must maintain their high intensity and focus in order to make sure this game isn’t a banana skin.

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[Arsenal ran out 3-0 winners in the reverse fixture back in September]

Aston Villa will be delighted with a point away at Arsenal given the current situation, so we can expect them to defend from deep and attempt to hurt their opponents on the break and from set-pieces.

Arsenal’s last five: W/W/L/W/W

Aston Villa’s last five: L/D/D/L/L

Key Stat: Aston Villa haven’t beaten a side from the top seven in the league this season.

Key Player: Olivier Giroud – The big Frenchman comes under a lot of criticism and should get more credit for the great job he does when leading the line for Arsenal – he is crucial.

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Arsenal vs. Aston Villa Prediction: Arsenal 3-0 Aston Villa – The Gunners to cruise to victory and remain on track.