Arsenal v Liverpool

12 Aug

Jurgen Klopp and Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger (right) leads Jurgen Klopp by three wins to two from seven previous meetings as opposing managers


Arsenal summer signings Granit Xhaka and Rob Holding are expected to make their debuts against Liverpool but defenders Per Mertesacker, Gabriel and Carl Jenkinson are all injured.

Danny Welbeck is also injured, while Euro 2016 finalists Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud are not match fit.

Liverpool may be without Daniel Sturridge and James Milner because of respective hip and heel injuries.

There could be debuts for Sadio Mane, Georginio Wijnaldum and Joel Matip.


Guy Mowbray: “Many say it’s the game of the weekend, and in terms of goals it’s got every chance of living up to that.

“With all three of Arsenal’s first choice centre backs ruled out, it will be a difficult test for 21-year-olds Calum Chambers and Rob Holding – with the latter set for his Premier League debut against the team that has scored more goals in the competition this year than any other.

“Liverpool’s new signings have blended well in pre-season and only increased their goal threat – but the Reds don’t look great shakes at the back either, and Arsenal have been in good goalscoring form in their warm-up games.

“Who’s going 0-0?”

Twitter: @Guymowbray


Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger: “I think it’s harder than ever to convince people that you can buy good players at a reasonable price and that the quality is necessarily linked with the amount of money today is in everybody’s mind.

“Most of the time it’s true – good players cost a lot of money – but you can still find players of top quality at a reasonable price sometimes. It’s not a financial competition, football is a performance competition.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp: “Consistency is the only way to be successful. All of these big jumps in performance, up and down, don’t help.

“What we’ve tried to do in pre-season is to be more independent to the style of play of the other team. If they defend deep, we cannot change it – we cannot say, ‘come on, it’s boring, give us a little bit of space to play’.

“If they only play counter-attack, if they play high pressure, all that stuff, you need to always have a solution. That’s what we were working on.”


Arsenal fans are already complaining about their side’s lack of signings and they are currently short of fit centre-halves.

Liverpool have injury problems too and I think both sides would take a point here.

Prediction: 1-1

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Superstar managers set to do battle in Premier League



  • Arsenal have lost just one of the 10 most recent league and cup meetings (W5, D4, L1).
  • Liverpool’s only win in their last 20 away trips to Arsenal in all competitions, spanning 15 years, came in the Premier League in August 2011 (W1, D8, L11).
  • There have been a Premier League record five hat-tricks in this fixture.
  • Premier League matches between these sides have produced an unrivalled 16 goals in the 90th minute or later. Liverpool have scored nine of those, with seven goals for Arsenal.


  • The Gunners have lost two of their last three home games on the opening weekend of the season.
  • They ended 2015-16 on a season’s best 10-match unbeaten run in the league (W5, D5).
  • Arsenal finished as high as second for the first time since 2005. However, they became the first team since Manchester United in 2003-04 not to win the Premier League after being top at the end of January.
  • Olivier Giroud has scored four goals in his last four league appearances against Liverpool.


  • Liverpool have finished outside the top five in six of the last seven seasons.
  • They had the seventh best record in the Premier League under Jurgen Klopp, averaging 1.6 points per game under him. The Reds averaged 1.5 points in their first eight matches of the season before the German’s appointment.
  • Liverpool have scored an unrivalled 41 Premier League goals in 2016 so far.
  • Roberto Firmino has scored nine goals and set up four more in 15 Premier League appearances this calendar year, including two goals against Arsenal in January.

SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Salford that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.


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