Despite this all Arsenal fans will be as excited as ever after seeing a whole new batch of youngsters this season with things certainly looking rosy for the coming years. Of course there is still Champions League places up for grabs in the league so that aspect of their season is by no means over yet, but still being in the FA Cup, Champions League and in the final of the Carling Cup there is plenty to smile about in north London.
Arsenal host Wigan this Sunday and being still unbeaten at their new home since reverting from Highbury it’s hard to see a struggling Wigan side denting that record.
The bookmakers understandably have the Gunners as short 2/7 favourites and being the last game of the weekend there could be a lot of double and treble punters waiting on this one. Arsenal’s last 10 home games read P10 W7 D3, and with wins over Man Utd, Liverpool and Spurs amongst those victories even at a massive 9/1 it will be a brave man that backs the visitors.
Wigan stopped the rot last weekend with a 1-0 over Pompey, but before that a run of eight consecutive league defeats have seen them plummet to fourth from bottom and are now in a real relegation dog-fight.
After a great first season in the big time Wigan struggled to keep hold of some of their best players and with the likes of Pascal Chimbonda and Jimmy Bullard leaving in the summer they have found it hard this time around. Their strikers don’t look like they have gelled and with their top scorer on just six goals at this stage of the season they really need a turn around in front of goal.
They are priced up at around 9/4 to be relegated and although Wigan fans will hate me for saying this I think this looks a cracking bet. There is no chance of any points this weekend in my opinion and even though they are 5 points clear of the third from bottom a win for Watford, Charlton or West Ham (Especially as West Ham play Watford) this weekend and that 9/4 will disappear without trace.
So with a straight forward task ahead for Arsene Wenger’s side where do the best betting opportunities lie?
Since his return from injury captain Thierry Henry has scored in all four of their recent league games and I know it’s not the most imaginative of suggestions but a winner is a winner after all. Henry netted a hat-trick in this fixture last season, but at 8/11 just to get one looks a cracking bet that is sure to return a profit.
Arsenal won that game last season 4-2 and I expect goals once more, so 21/10 on their being over 2.5 goals is another stand-out bet, while at bigger odds backing Arsenal to win 3-0 at 15/2 and 4-0 at 12/1 are also tempting. The Gunners have won five of their 12 league home games either 3-0 or 4-0, so repeat of one of those scorelines will not be that much of a surprise.
3pts Henry to score
2pts Over 2.5 goals
1pt – Arsenal 3-0
1pt – Arsenal 4-0
2pts – Wigan to be relegated
* All prices correct at time of writing.
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