Both teams which have just finished their continental campaign this midweek will be squaring off in the weekend. The Foxes is currently on the third of the table with ten points behind the top leaders but failed to go through to Europa League round of 16. Arsenal, on the other hand, is still stranded on the 11th in the standings but managed to advance in the next stage of second tier of European competition. However, both need maximum points for their own mission.
The teams’ previous games
The Foxes apparently weighs the chance carefully considering the priority and squad they have. Brendan Rodgers is more in favour of focusing in Premier League for the Champions League spot next season. They crushed Aston Villa 2-1 last week on the road. James Maddison and Harvey Barnes were once again the decisive scorer while the Villans only responded one time by Bertrand Traore. Yet, in Europa League, they lost 0-2 at home from Slavia Prague.
Meanwhile, the Gunners are more motivated in the Europa League. They had a thrilling encounter against Benfica in Athens before finally sealing 3-2 win. The skipper Pierre Aubameyang bagged a late winner to complete his brace after Kieran Tierney netted an equaliser. Previously, it was the Portuguese side which was leading on the score sheet as Rafa put them in front after Diego Goncalves’s free kick.
Brendan Rodgers’s mission to stay in the top four could be in danger as a number of key men are sidelined due to the injury, including their playmaker James Maddison, James Justin, Dennis Praet, Ayoze Perez and the centre back Wesley Fofana. Therefore, the former Liverpool and Celtic boss should consider deploying 3-4-3 instead with Harvey Barnes and Cengiz Under playing outwide to support Jamie Vardy.
Mikel Arteta, on the other hand, only concerns about his best starting IX’s physical fitness after the Europa League fixture. He is still confident with 4-2-3-1 formation. Aubameyang is still the frontman, but Alexander Lacazette is ready to take his post, should the captain still be unfit. Behind the Frenchman, Emile Smith Rowe is best suited as the number ten role while Martin Odegaard operating on the left side. On the right one, Bukayo Saka or Nicolas Pepe is ready to occupy the winger role.
Players to watch
The veteran Jamie Vardy might still be the top scorer of the team, but the true key figures of Leicester this season are Maddison and Harvey Barnes. Due to the former’s injury, the latter versatile winger will be the one they rely on to score. Barnes has notched up nine goals and provided four assists.
In Arsenal, Pierre Aubameyang is still the top scorer with eleven goals and one assist. Some other notable names to watch are the Belgian international Bukayo Saka and the youngster Emile Rowe.
Leicester vs Arsenal Prediction
The fatigue after continental fixtures can be an issue in this clash, which might impact their form. However, Mikel Arteta’s men have deeper pool in the squad to transform the tactics or formation when necessary. Jamie Vardy and Co might be fitter here but they are a bit unlikely to clinch a win without James Maddison on the pitch. A point for each is more suitable result.
In this tough class, the home side is backed to win at 13/8, whereas Arsenal’s win market is at 5/2. The draw result is at the value of 2/1.