Arsenal vs Leicester City
English Premier League, Season 2017/18
Date: Friday, 11th August 2017
Kick-off at 19:45 UK/ 20:45 CET
Venue: Emirates Stadium (London).
The biggest football festival in England kick start on Friday when Arsenal welcome Leicester City to the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners had another disappointing campaign during the 2016/17 season and finished outside the top four for the first time in 20 years. Amid the wild protests from a vast section of fans, Wenger remained at the hot seat and he will be here for at-least another two years.
Yet, there are positive signs if you are an Arsenal fan. They finally managed to sign the Alexandre Lacazette from Lyon, a player who was with the London club over the past four seasons. Meanwhile, the versatile Sead Kolasinac arrived from Schalke on a free transfer. These are important acquisitions for the team in their bid to strengthen respective areas.
Meantime, the future of talismanic forward Alexis Sanchez remains uncertain with rumors of a move away from North London. He is not expected to start on Friday, which also has to do with him joining the squad late.
From champions to relegation candidates, summarize Leicester City’s 2016/17 Premier League campaign. But, the exit of Claudio Ranieri propelled the team to produce some strong performances at the end of the season and achieve a respectable 12th placed finish. Craig Shakespeare, who took over as interim coach is rewarded for this with a permanent contract.
Leicester City made some decent acquisitions in the transfer market. The most exciting player to have arrived at the King Power stadium this summer is Manchester City youngster, Kelechi Iheanacho for a 27.70 million Euros. This is a tad lower than the purchase of Islam Slimani, who arrived last summer on 30million Euros. They also look to compensate for the void left by Ngolo Kante by bringing in the experienced Seville midfielder, Vicente Iborra.
Arsenal vs Leicester: Head-to-head
Arsenal are unbeaten in all competitions against Leicester since 1994. The last 18 meetings saw them winning 11 times along with 7 draws.
At home, the Gunners won their last six games against the Foxes. Their are also unbeaten in the last 9 with 8 wins and a draw.
Last season, the teams played out a goal-less draw at the King Power Stadium in their first meeting on match day 2. Arsenal won the return leg by a slender 1-0 margin.
Arsenal vs Leicester: Predictions
Along with their poor record against Arsenal, Leicester managed to win only twice in their last 21 Premier League games. This is something that make us automatically think the home side are the favorites here. Moreover, the Gunners will be a confident bunch after sinking Chelsea in the Community Shield a week ago.
Despite the positives, Wenger’s team are without their two most influential players Mezut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez due to fitness issues. Their pre-season exploits together with the performance in Community shield triumph clear show that the goal-scoring department needs a massive improvements. Besides, making full use of scoring chances matters here as their defense is vulnerable without the suspended Laurent Koscielny and injured Gabriel and Per Mertesacker.
One must expect a tough resistance from Leicester at Emirates in the Premier League opener. We believe, Arsenal will find it hard to take full points from this game.