Villa, who dropped into the relegation zone after late week’s 5-0 loss to Manchester City, have won none of their last 13 Premier League home games against Arsenal, drawing six and losing seven.
The visit of the Gunners couldn’t really have come at a worse time. Paul Lambert has struggled to really stamp his authority on his new job thus far. Since taking over in the summer, Lambert has only won two games and his side have really struggled to in front of goal.
His public fall-out with star striker Darren Bent has hardly helped matters as his Villa side have lacked the out-an-out goal threat that would be provided by the England frontman. He hasn’t played since the League Cup tie against Swindon and looks likely to be moved on in the January transfer window.
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The Villains have won only two of their last 18 home games in the Premier League, and this weekend doesn’t look like a presentable opportunity to erase that run.
The home side are 4/1 with Bet365 to notch a surprise victory, and it seems that there aren’t many people queuing up to take that price. It seems as punters aren’t confident of Villa putting a stop their worst start to a season since 1964.
Arsenal on the other hand, will be pretty confident at Villa Park, and will know a victory could see them leapfrog Everton into fifth place in the league.
After a mini-blip in the league, Arsenal have won their last two games against Tottenham and Montpellier, scoring seven goals in that period. Their away form in the league is better than most seasons with wins against West Ham United and Liverpool, and a valuable draw away at Premier League champions Manchester City.
The 8/11 offered by Paddy Power on an away win here does look pretty bombproof but remember Arsenal do have the ability to throw in stinkers away from home. See their 1-0 defeat against Norwich at Carrow Road as an example.
Before their away defeats at Norwich and Manchester United, the Gunners had lost just one of their previous 12 Premier League away games, winning seven of those. Therefore the 8/11 looks well worth taking. Meanwhile, the draw can be backed 3/1 with Bet365.
A market to focus on in this particular match could be the both teams to score option, with yes, at 4/7 with Ladbrokes, making plenty of appeal.
Both teams have scored in seven of Arsenal’s last nine Premier League games, whilst five of Villa’s last six home games have seen both sides score. Some may feel that the home side don’t possess the attacking power to notch but the Arsenal backline is very susceptible to pace and striker Christian Benteke has the ability to cause problems for the cumbersome Per Mertesacker.
For those that may want to chance their arm of the Belgian, who has looked to be adapting to the Premier League in recent weeks, to notch first can get 9/1 with Bet365.
Arsenal’s best chance of scoring, according to the markets, comes from Olivier Giroud, who has stepped up his performances in recent weeks. He hasn’t scored as many as maybe he should have but goals could be around the corner, and he looks a very attractive prospect at 4/1 with Ladbrokes to score first.
Such is the confidence behind the Arsenal man, Paddy Power have reported money for him to score two or more goals at 11/2.