Premier League: Arsenal v Sunderland match preview

A look ahead to this weekend’s Premier League fixture at the Emirates

Ahead of a nightmare March for Arsenal, which sees them play Everton, Bayern Munich, Tottenham, Chelsea and Manchester City in the space of 21 days, the Gunners must first play Sunderland at the Emirates on Saturday.

With that incredibly tough run of matches coming up for Arsene Wenger’s team, a positive performances and a victory are musts if Arsenal are to maintain their confidence and be in contention for the league title come May.

After a tough week for Arsenal, which saw them lose 2-0 to German champions Bayern in the last 16 of the Champions League on Wednesday night, they need to pick themselves up and go again against the Black Cats.

Sunderland remain in the bottom three despite picking up 10 points for their last 5 games and this may be the best time to face an Arsenal side that has had to deal with so many high pressure games in the recent weeks and with still many more to come.

Gus Poyet’s side were poor in their last league game, losing 2-0 at home to fellow strugglers Hull, but have Adam Johnson in fine form and chasing a place in England’s World Cup squad.

Arsenal can’t afford any slip ups against Sunderland if they are going to claim any silverware this year, a defeat could spell the end of any trophy hopes for yet another season.

KICK-OFF: Saturday, 3.00pm

PAST MEETINGS…

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

Sunderland 0 Arsenal 1 (Cazorla), Premier League, February 2013

Arsenal 0 Sunderland 0, Premier League, August 2012

Sunderland 2 (Richardson, Oxlade-Chamberlain (og)) Arsenal 0, FA Cup Fifth Round, February 2012

Sunderland 1 (McClean) Arsenal 2 (Ramsey, Henry), Premier League, February 2012

Arsenal 2 (Van Persie (2)) Sunderland 1 (Larsson), Premier League, October 2011

 

STATS…

Arsenal have only conceding one goal at home in the Premier League since October 19

Arsenal have lost just once in the last 10 Premier League games

Arsenal have the best defensive home record in the league having only conceded 6 times

Adam Johnson has scored 6 times in his last 5 league games for Sunderland

Since taking over Sunderland in October, Gus Poyet’s team have received 5 red cards

ODDS…

Arsenal to win: 1.28

Sunderland to win: 12.0

Draw: 5.0

TV: Highlights on Sky Sports 1 Match Choice from 10.00pm and BBC 1 Match of the Day at 10.30pm

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