Feature

#ARSLEI: Five things to look out for

Lacazette - Five things

Unai Emery's side will be hoping to make it 10 consecutive wins on Monday night, so what are the five key things you need to look out for? Read on to find out...

ON THE RUN (ONE)

We are unbeaten in our last 25 home matches against Leicester in all competitions, a run stretching back to a 2-0 defeat in September 1973. Since then, we’ve won 19 and drawn six when hosting the Foxes - including winning all four games at Emirates Stadium. We have won three of our last five home matches against Leicester by two goals to one. Last season was a higher scoring affair though, and one that Alexandre Lacazette in particular should have fond memories of. He scored a matter of seconds into his Premier League debut, setting us on the way to a dramatic 4-3 win. Danny Welbeck is another striker who has enjoyed playing against the 2016 champions here, scoring in that 4-3 win last August, and netting a last-minute winner two seasons earlier.

It's also worth noting that there hasn’t been a goalless draw when we’ve hosted Leicester in the league since December 14, 1974. We’ve played 20 league matches at home since then, with 63 goals scored between the two teams at an average of 3.15 per game.


ON THE RUN (TWO)

A more significant current run though is the nine-game winning streak that Unai Emery's side are currently on. Should Arsenal triumph again on Monday night, it will be the club's first 10-match winning sequence since October 2007, and will move the side to within four wins of the all-time club record of 14, set in 2002.

The omens are good. Since January 2017 we have beaten every side from outside last season's top six that we have faced at home in the Premier League. Since losing to Watford two seasons ago our Emirates record in such matches reads: P22 W22 D0 L0 F64 A11.

In addition we've won four and drawn one of our last five home games played on a Monday night, conceding just once in the process.

But there's no doubt the Gunners recent good form has been built on our attacking prowess - we have scored at least twice in each of the past 10 games. The last time the club managed a streak like that was during the 2003/04 Invincibles season.

Unai Emery

SECOND-HALF ACTION

Despite winning our last six Premier League matches, we have yet to go into the half-time interval leading in the league this season. In all competitions this season Arsenal have scored 29 goals, but just nine of those have come in the opening 45 minutes. It's an issue Unai Emery discussed in his pre-match interview with Arsenal.com. He said: "We are starting the matches maybe with less intensity than we want and it’s one thing we need to get better at in the next matches and the first is against Leicester."

Arsenal would be 15th in a Premier League table compiled of first-half results alone, but no team has scored more second-half goals than us in the top flight this term (14).


THE THREAT OF JAMES MADDISON

Fresh from being called up by England for the first time, Leicester City's number 10 James Maddison, who joined from Norwich City in the summer, will be full of confidence. It won't be his first trip to Emirates Stadium, having played in the Carabao Cup fourth round match this time last year, and Michael Cox of zonalmarking.net believes Arsenal must 'watch him carefully',

"Leicester's major change this season has been the departure of Riyad Mahrez to Manchester City, and the signing of James Maddison as his replacement," Cox writes in the matchday programme. "Mahrez typified Leicester’s counter-attacking with his direct dribbling from the right flank, but Maddison is now the side’s technical leader. He plays a different role, fielded in the central attacking slot in Puel’s 4-2-3-1, and his game is about drifting between the lines and creating chances through guile.

"Maddison has been one of the Premier League’s brightest performers so far this season, and must be watched carefully here. He’s consistently shown an ability to shoot from long-range, and he’s a threat from set-pieces, too, scoring a wonderful Beckham-esque free-kick against Huddersfield, and assisting Harry Maguire’s headed goal against Newcastle with an outswinging corner,

"Maddison is likely to start behind Jamie Vardy, who continues to lead the line well by making well-timed bursts into the channels."

Vardy will also demand plenty of attention as well of course, he’s scored six times in his previous six appearances against us in all competitions, including three last season.

James Maddison

LACA'S 50

A man in form, Alexandre Lacazette will be making his 50th Gunners appearance if he features on Monday night. He's started 38 of those 49 games to date, scoring 22 goals in all competitions. The first came in this fixture last season, and nobody has scored more for the Gunners since he joined in a record-breaking deal from Lyon in summer 2017.

The 27 year old was on the bench for the first three league games of the season, but has started each of the past five, and Arsenal have taken maximum points. In fact Lacazette has won all of the last eight Premier League games he's started, going back to last season, scoring seven times in the process.