Drastically struggling to find their feet since returning from the enforced break, a downbeat Arsenal will be desperate to end their recent rut when they travel to St. Mary’s on Thursday evening.
Throwing away the lead in stunning fashion away at relegation scrappers Brighton last weekend, the Gunners were handed a 2-1 defeat at the Amex and have now been hit with back-to-back losses since the return to action.
On the flip side, really laying down a marker after what was a rampant second-half display at Carrow Road last week, Southampton marched to a 3-0 romp against Norwich on their return and couldn’t have wished for a better start.
While the Saints might have been devastated to have seen Arsenal snatch a 96th-minute equalizer when the two sides faced off at the Emirates earlier in the season, they should be boosted by the Gunners’ last trip to the South Coast.
Picking up a 3-2 win when they last welcomed Arsenal to St. Mary’s, you might be interested to know that another home victory on Thursday evening can be found priced at 8/5 with Paddy Power.
Danny Ings steals the show
Although back-to-back defeat against West Ham and Newcastle prior to the break may have started to worry some in Southampton’s camp, the midweek hosts certainly laid down a marker on their return to action.
Completely blowing away a rock-bottom Norwich in East Anglia and bagging a trio of second-half strikes, there is no doubt that Head Coach Ralph Hasenhüttl would have been excited by Danny Ings’ stunning return.
Putting in a Man of the Match display at Carrow Road last week, the 27-year-old has only gone from strength to strength following a permanent switch from Anfield.
Scoring a wonderful strike against the Canneries on the road, only Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (17) and Jamie Vardy (19) have scored more Premier League goals than Ings (16) this season.
With 19 goals across all competitions already this year, Southampton’s MVP also found the net in the Saints’ 2-2 draw in North London back in November.
You might be interested to know that a red-hot Ings can be found priced at 7/5 with William Hill to extend on his glittering tally at St. Mary’s on Thursday evening.
Arsenal in freefall
Watching bottom-three strugglers Brighton come from behind to grab an injury-time winner on the South Coast last weekend, Arsenal firmly find themselves in the midst of what is a real crisis.
Completely blown away on their return to action in what ended up being a 3-0 drumming against Manchester City, new boss Mikel Arteta finds his side in an uphill battle to secure any kind of European finish this season.
With a real rebuilding job on his hands at the Emirates, Pep Guardiola’s former deputy will undoubtedly be most worried by his side’s rather glaring issues at the back.
Watching a David Luiz disaster-class on their return to action last week, the Gunners have an ever-growing injury list to deal with and have shipped five goals on their back-to-back outings since the restart.
Shipping a pair of goals in three of their last four meetings against Southampton, a struggling Gunners can be found priced at 5/4 with Ladbrokes to once again concede over 1.5 goals in midweek.
Elsewhere, after picking up what appeared to be a horror knee injury on the South Coast last weekend, Arsenal will be without #1 keeper Bernd Leno who was wearing a brace and using crutches as he left the Amex.