Saturday, 11 December 2021

Arsenal - Southampton: prediction "1"

Arsenal meet Southampton in a match of the 16th round of the Premier League. Last weekend, the Gunners suffered another disappointment, losing 2:1 away to Everton. This was the third consecutive loss for Mikel Arteta and his players. This time, however, Arsenal are certainly sorry for the missed opportunity. While the defeat against Liverpool was expected and natural, the performance in the 3: 2 loss against Manchester United left good impressions and gave confidence that against Everton the "Gunners" can record their third victory as a guest this season.

The last few weeks have not been good for Southampton either. Before the break for national teams in November, the Saints were in the top half of the standings, playing good football. However, the 2:0 loss against Norwich obviously spoiled the atmosphere in the team and three more disappointments followed. Southampton have collected just two points from the last four rounds and are now 16th in the standings. It is too early to conclude that the Saints will be involved in the battle for survival, but better results are needed to prevent this from happening.

As a host, Southampton plays confidently, but is a different team away from home. In their visits, the "Saints" pay too much attention to the game in defense and are not so active in front positions. This is somewhat understandable given the club's ambitions in recent seasons. Ralph Hazenhuttle even reduced his high-pressure demands on his team in an attempt to close any gaps in defense, but against the top teams it brought him partial success only against Manchester City (0:0 draw).

A huge part of Arsenal's points asset was accumulated at Emirates against rivals from the bottom of the standings. The Gunners dominated almost all of the matches at home, with the only exception being the 2:0 loss to Chelsea. I expect Arsenal to return to victory, recording their sixth victory as hosts this season. The main figures in Mikel Arteta's team got a break against Everton, but on Saturday they will be on the line and will create a lot of headaches for Southampton's defense.

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