Liverpool head the English soccer Premier League table at the campaign’s halfway stage and will seek to end the calendar year on a further high with victory at home to Arsenal on Saturday (12:30pm ET).
The last couple of matchdays could barely have gone better for Liverpool. Wins away to Wolverhampton Wanderers and at home to Newcastle coupled with a pair of consecutive defeats for Manchester City mean they now hold a six-point advantage at the top of the table.
The manner in which Jurgen Klopp’s side swatted aside Newcastle on Boxing Day provided a demonstration of the relentlessness with which they have attacked the season to date. Dejan Lovren gave them an early lead, Mohamed Salah doubled their advantage from the penalty spot, and Xherdan Shaqiri and Fabinho then added gloss to the scoreline with late strikes.
There are certainly reasons to believe that this Liverpool team might just be the one to finally claim the club’s 19th top-flight league title, 29 years after the last. Indeed, they have already overtaken Man City as favorites with our recommended U.S. offshore sports betting sites to lift the Premier League trophy.
That position is supported by a highly impressive campaign to date. Liverpool are the league’s only undefeated team, have conceded just seven times in 19 matches (eight less than any other side), and have the same league-best, +36 goal difference as City. On that measure, they have a 12-goal margin over Tottenham Hotspur, their closest challengers on points.
Summer additions, most notably that of goalkeeper Allison, and a few tweaks to their tactical approach have transformed Liverpool into formidable opponents and genuine Premier League soccer title challengers. They come into Saturday’s match on the back of eight consecutive victories, and it is necessary to go all the way back to April 2017 to find their last defeat on home soil – a full 30 matches ago.
If they could extend their current winning streak to 10 with victories over Arsenal and then away to Manchester City next Thursday, they would become heavy odds-on favorites to go from there to claim the title. Three points or less from those fixtures would, however, give an entirely different shape to things. This feels like a crucial juncture in the campaign.
Arsenal managed to secure a 1-1 draw at home to Liverpool earlier this season, with Alexandre Lacazette equalising James Milner’s opener, but they have not enjoyed their last couple of trips to Anfield. They lost 0-4 there last season, and 1-3 the season before. Unai Emery will need to come up with a better plan for constricting their hosts than his predecessor Arsene Wenger was able to muster.
Emery made a good impression upon his arrival at the Emirates, recovering from consecutive defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea on the opening two weekends of the season with seven consecutive victories that placed his side firmly in the hunt for a top-four finish. Things have, however, started to get a bit more difficult for him in recent months.
Arsenal have only actually lost once, away to Southampton, since that winning streak, but they have also only managed to win four of those subsequent 10 matches. Draws with Crystal Palace, Wolverhampton Wanderers and, on Boxing Day, Brighton, in addition to their Carabao Cup quarter-final defeat to Spurs, have balanced out a bit of that early enthusiasm.
There is plenty of the campaign left to contest. They are only two points shy of Chelsea in fourth and they certainly have enough attacking talent to remain in the race for Champions League qualification. Unless Emery is able to improve Arsenal’s defensive stability (they’ve conceded seven more than any other top-five side) during the second half of the campaign, fifth is likely to be their limit in his first season at the helm.
Our Preview’s Liverpool vs. Arsenal Predictions & Betting Picks Conclusion
There is a strong argument that Liverpool have the offensive firepower to take full advantage of Arsenal’s relative defensive deficiencies and are strong enough themselves at the back to sufficiently restrict Arsenal’s attack. Many bettors will fancy Liverpool to end an impressive year with victory in a fixture that has always yielded a good number of goals. Who could blame them?
However that majority view has led to the bookies taking no chances with the favorites to win this match. Liverpool are a miserly -200 (1/2), with the draw generally +320 and Arsenal at a generous-looking +520 to win this game.
If you want a wager at those odds, then we would be tempted with a tickle on the outsiders. Arsenal look the betting value and they do possess the talent to be the first side to damage Liverpool’s phenomenal record so far this season. Our Liverpool vs Arsenal prediction is:
- Bet on Arsenal to win @ +520 with BetOnline.