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Standard Liege vs Arsenal preview: team news, betting odds & prediction

By on December 12, 2019

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Arsenal need victory over Standard Liege in Belgium this evening to secure top spot in Europa League Group F.

The north Londoners got their season back on track with a 3-1 comeback victory over West Ham on Monday night. It was Arsenal’s first win in 10 games in all competitions and Freddie Ljungberg’s first three points since being installed as interim manager following Unai Emery’s departure earlier this month.

However, the Gunners still sit ninth in the Premier League table – seven points adrift of the top four – so the Europa League could be their best bet of getting back in the Champions League next season.

Arsenal currently sit top of Europa League Group F on 10 points but Eintracht Frankfurt are just one point back in second position after winning at the Emirates Stadium two weeks ago so top spot is still hanging in the balance.

Frankfurt are expected to beat Vitoria at home in tonight’s other group game so Arsenal are under pressure to beat Standard Liege or risk finishing second and facing a much tougher draw in the last-32.

Team news

Arsenal have been dealt a huge blow with the news that Kieran Tierney is facing up to three months on the sidelines with a dislocated shoulder that he sustained at West Ham on Monday night.

Hector Bellerin has also been ruled out of today’s game after suffering a hamstring injury in the pre-match warm-up at the London Stadium while Granit Xhaka will miss at least two games due to concussion.

Nicolas Pepe is another absentee as he picked up a knee injury at West Ham while Dani Ceballos and Rob Holding remain on the sidelines with hamstring and knee injuries respectively.

Ljungberg is expected to rest the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Sead Kolasinac, Lucas Torreira and Mesut Ozil ahead of Sunday’s clash with Man City so the likes of Alexandre Lacazette, Bukayo Saka, Reiss Nelson, Joe Willock and Emile Smith Rowe should feature against Liege.

Line-ups

Arsenal: Martinez, Medley, Mustafi, Luiz, Maitland-Niles, Guendouzi, Willock, Saka, Smith Rowe, Nelson, Lacazette

Liege: Bodart; Vanheusden, Vojvoda, Bastien, Laifis; Gavory, M’Poku, Amallah; Emond, Boljevic, Carcela-Gonzalez

Betting odds

Arsenal are the 3/4 favourites to win the game with most sports betting UK sites while Liege can be backed at odds of 29/10 with the draw available at 3/1. There have been plenty of goals in Arsenal’s recent matches and tonight shouldn’t be any different. The Gunners won the reverse fixture 4-0 and while today’s game should be more difficult, I’m still expecting plenty of goal-mouth action so Over 3.5 match goals at 6/5 looks a good bet.

Lacazette will be confident of getting himself on the scoresheet against this level of competition so 10/3 as first goalscorer looks tempting. A 3-1 Arsenal win can be backed at odds of 11/1 and if we add Lacazette as first scorer we get excellent odds of 48/1.

Predicted score

Arsenal thrashed Liege at the Emirates earlier in the season and they’ll be confident of coming home with all three points later today. The win over West Ham will have been a real confidence booster to the squad and hopefully they can now kick on and get the season back on track. With Ljungberg fielding a weakened side I do think Liege will give us a decent game but am backing Arsenal to win 3-1 to secure top spot in the group. Liege 1-3 Arsenal

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