Arsenal vs Sunderland: What time does it start, where can I watch it and what to both teams need?

A look ahead to the Premier League clash at the Emirates

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The Independent Football

Sunderland make the long trip to Arsenal knowing that a single point from their remaining two fixtures will confirm their Premier League status for ninth consecutive season.

A point would also all but secure a third place finish for The Gunners, handing them automatic entry in the group stages of the Champions League next season. However, Arsène Wenger will be in no mood to help Dick Advocaat’s side out as he knows that victory tonight will keep alive the possibility of finishing in second place behind champions Chelsea.

The visitors travel to the capital in good form, having picked up 11 points from the last 18 available, but history is not on their side - The Black Cats have not recorded a league victory on their travels to Arsenal in over three decades. Wenger’s men have lost just twice at The Emirates this season, and average over two goals per game – but tonight could be trickier for them than anticipated, with Sunderland rejuvenated since the arrival of Dutchman Advocaat.

 

The contract extension of captain Mikel Arteta has been long-discussed but ultimately not yet confirmed, meaning that – along with other fellow midfielders Mathieu Flamini and Abou Diaby – this could well be the final occasion he visits the Emirates as an Arsenal player, having been absent with injury since November.

Arsenal end their season at the weekend with a home clash against West Brom, whilst Sunderland host Leicester City – but will be hoping to have already avoided relegation by then.

KICK-OFF: Wednesday, 7.45pm

PAST THREE MEETINGS:

Sunderland 0 Arsenal 2 (Sanchez 2), Premier League, October 2014

Arsenal 4 (Giroud 2, Rosicky, Koscielny) Sunderland 1 (Giaccherini), Premier League, February 2014

Sunderland 1 (Gardner) Arsenal 3 (Ramsey 2, Giroud), Premier League, September 2013

STATS:

Arsenal have won seven of their last 10 Premier League matches against Sunderland – drawing the other three.

Olivier Giroud has scored three goals in his last three matches against The Black Cats.

Sunderland have drawn 16 matches this season, five more than any other team in the league – but they also have the second fewest wins.

Sunderland have picked up 94 yellow cards in the Premier League season, 15 more than any other side – with Lee Cattermole the worst for discipline, having collected 14 bookings thus far. One more caution for the tough-tackling midfielder would give him the unwanted Premier League record for most bookings in a season.

ODDS:

Arsenal to win: 1.30

Sunderland to win: 12.00

Draw: 5.50

CLASSIC MOMENT/MATCH:

Tomas Rosicky’s goal at The Emirates back in their 4-1 win last February epitomises the way Arsenal like to play – having combined with Cazorla, Wilshere and Giroud, the Czech midfielder dinked the ball over the hapless Mannone to sweep lowly Sunderland aside.

TV: Live on Sky Sports 1, kick-off 7.45pm

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