All the media attention will be on under pressure Arsenal manager, Unai Emery, as he takes his lacklustre Gunners to Carrow Road to face relegation threatened Norwich City, on Sunday afternoon.
Norwich bid for survival
Newly promoted Norwich City secured a priceless three-points at Everton last weekend in their bid for Premier League survival. Second half goals from Todd Cantwell and Dennis Srbeny earned the Canaries a 2-0 win, which was their first league victory since they beat Manchester City 3-2 in September. That success at Goodison Park was only their third league win of the season and followed three straight defeats; but it was enough to lift Norwich off the bottom of the table.
Norwich’s hopes of survival will be reliant on their home record, but of their six home games during this EPL campaign, they have won twice and lost the other four, which has included defeats in the last three games at Carrow Road. However, one interesting stat to bear in mind is that five of Norwich’s six home games have seen over 3.5 goals.
Under fire Gunners
Before their fixture with Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League, Arsenal were without a win in their last six games in all competitions and have not won in the Premier League since the beginning of October when they beat Bournemouth 1-0 at the Emirates Stadium. That poor run has seen the Gunners drop down to eighth place in the league and manager, Unai Emery, is coming under mounting pressure from the fans.
Away from home, Arsenal have won just one of their six league games on the road, which was a 1-0 win at Newcastle on the opening weekend of the season. Their last two games away from North London has seen them fail to score a single goal, as they were beaten 1-0 at Sheffield United and 2-0 at Leicester City. In fact, Arsenal’s last three away games have seen under 2.5 goals.
You have to go back to 2012 for the last time Norwich City beat Arsenal, a 1-0 victory in the Premier League thanks to a Grant Holt goal for the Canaries. This is in part due to the number of years Norwich have been outside the top-flight, but overall the head-to-head record has been dominated by Arsenal.
The Gunners last victory in Norfolk coming in 2014, when they won 2-0 thanks to strikes from Aaron Ramsey and Carl Jenkinson. The last time the sides met in any competition was back in 2017 in the EFL trophy at the Emirates Stadium. Then Championship club, Norwich, led 1-0 until the 85th minute, but Arsenal equalised and won the tie 2-1 in extra time.
This is a big game for both sides for different reasons. Norwich need to build on last week’s excellent result at Everton to move out of the relegation zone and should see this as an opportunity to beat an Arsenal side in turmoil.
Defeat for Arsenal could spell the end of Unai Emery’s reign at the Gunners, but they will see this as an ideal chance to record a second away win of the season and start moving in the right direction again.
Despite the pressure on the game, it should be an open attacking match and in Alexandre Lacazette, the visitors have a player who will be looking to pick up where he left off from last week after scoring two goals against Southampton in a disappointing 2-2 draw.
Norwich forward, Teemu Pukki, was on fire at the start of the season, but he will be looking for his first EPL goal for the Canaries since that 3-2 win over Man City in September. This could easily finish in a scoring draw, but Arsenal’s extra quality might just earn them the three-points.
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