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Match Previews

PREVIEW: ARSENAL V ALBION

29 September 2017

REX/Shutterstock/Paul Hazlewood
Alexandre Lacazette and Solly March celebrating goals.

Brighton & Hove Albion make their first visit to the Emirates Stadium on Sunday, when they come up against Arsenal live on BT Sport, kick-off 12pm.



Chris Hughton’s team head into the lunchtime kick-off after beating Newcastle United 1-0 at the Amex last Sunday, while the Gunners also picked up three points with a 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion.

Albion’s victory moved them up to 13th position, three points behind this weekend’s opponents, who currently occupy seventh spot in the Premier League [before Saturday’s fixtures].



The Seagulls will make their debut at Arsenal’s newest home, while Arsene Wenger’s side have visited the Amex twice in recent years, winning 3-2 on both occasions in the FA Cup.



Striker Tomer Hemed will be missing for Sunday’s clash, following the three-game ban that was handed to him by the FA for an incident in Albion’s narrow win against the Magpies.



Glenn Murray is back in training and Hughton hopes he will be involved at the weekend. Izzy Brown is back in contention and could make a return from a hamstring problem. Sam Baldock is also back in training, but is still ruled out for Sunday's game.

For Arsenal, German playmaker Mesut Ozil could return to the starting line-up after making a second-half substitute appearance against West Brom last week.



Danny Welbeck (groin), Francis Coquelin (hamstring) and Santi Cazorla (ankle) are all expected to miss the match through injury, with Calum Chambers (hip) also sidelined.

FORM:

ALBION: The Seagulls head into Sunday’s game in confident mood, after keeping their second clean sheet in the Premier League and securing another victory thanks to Hemed’s second-half strike against Newcastle.



Hughton’s men had previously lost back-to-back games against Bournemouth in both league and cup competitions, which included Solly March’s first Premier League goal in a 2-1 defeat at the Vitality Stadium.

Albion’s first league victory came against the Baggies at the Amex, and it was Gross that notched the club’s first-ever Premier League goal, before the German and Hemed added further goals in a 3-1 win.



A first Premier League point was gained in a 0-0 draw against Watford at Vicarage Road, following back-to-back 2-0 defeats to Manchester City and Leicester City at the start of the season.



ARSENAL: The Gunners have a 100-per-cent record at the Emirates Stadium this season, most recently sealing a comfortable 2-0 win over the Baggies, who Albion have also beaten.



Wenger’s team picked up their first away point in the Premier League with a hard-earned goalless draw against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, which followed a resounding 3-0 home win against Bournemouth.

Defeats came in Arsenal’s opening away fixtures against Stoke City and Liverpool, as the Potters recorded a 1-0 win before Jurgen Klopp’s team sealed an emphatic 4-0 victory.

After beating Chelsea on penalties in the Community Shield at Wembley, Arsenal’s Premier League campaign started with an entertaining 4-3 home triumph against Leicester City on the opening night of the season.


LAST TIME OUT: ALBION



ALBION 1
Hemed 51

NEWCASTLE UNITED 0

Albion line-up: Ryan; Bruno, Duffy, Dunk, Suttner; Knockaert (Murphy 81), Stephens, Propper, March; Gross; Hemed.

Subs not used: Krul (GK), Huenemeier, Izquierdo, Schelotto, Rosenior, Brown.



LAST TIME OUT: ARSENAL







ARSENAL 2
Lacazette 20, 67 pen

WEST BROMWICH ALBION 0



Arsenal line-up: Cech; Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal; Bellerin, Kolasinac, Elneny, Xhaka; Sanchez (Ozil 83), Ramsey (Maitland-Niles 90+3); Lacazette (Giroud 83).



Subs not used: Ospina (GK), Mertesacker, Wilshere, Walcott.




PLAYER TO WATCH: Alexandre Lacazette



After arriving from Lyon this summer, the striker has made a solid start to his Arsenal career, scoring four goals in his opening six games for the north London club.



Lacazette has showed early signs of his pace to get in behind opposition defences, as well as his clinical finishing, as he scored both goals in Arsenal’s most recent victory at the Emirates Stadium.

The forward scored 129 goals in 275 appearances for Lyon, and has worked his way through the international age groups to make 13 appearances for France.



Albion’s defence will need to put an end to Lacazette’s impressive form at the Emirates Stadium, as he became the first Arsenal player to score in his first three home league games since 1988.


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