Football Article

Arsenal v Middlesbrough live & preview Premier League 2016-17

Arsenal v Middlesbrough  live & preview Premier League 2016-17 Photo: TT

Arsenal, who are level on points with Manchester City and behind only on goal difference, welcome Middlesbrough to the Emirates Stadium on Saturday and will be looking to continue their run of six consecutive wins.

Arsenal’s front line has been in formidable form with Alexis Sanchez their main creator, having amassed six assists already this season. It is a testament to the fluidity of Wenger’s attack that assist machine Mesut Ozil is yet to register a single assist this season and the Gunners are still joint on points with Manchester City at the top, who have been lauded as the best team in the division by most pundits and publications.

Lucas Perez might fancy a look in against Boro, as Sanchez has been having a lot of games on the trot. Alex Oxlade Chamberlain will also feature in some capacity, as will Coquelin by virtue of Granit Xhaka’s red card against Swansea.

Aitor Karanka brings his men to the Emirates Stadium, knowing full well that another loss or draw could propel him into the red zone of the table, as the team sit in 17th place and are above Stoke City only on goal difference.

Boro have a very multicultural line up which includes Arsenal loanee, Calum Chambers as well as the former Manchester CIty man, Alvaro Negredo.

Their defence has not lived up to the challenge of the Premier League to say the least, and Karanka will be anxious to get a clean sheet under his belt, having been a central defender of some repute himself.

The two sides have played each other 29 times in the top flight with Arsenal the clear victor 17 times, compared to just five wins for Boro.

Arsenal will be keen to take all three points though, with Chelsea facing Manchester United and Manchester CIty facing Southampton on the next day, it might just be an opportunity to go top of the table.

Arsenal have of course won all their last six games while Boro face an uphill task to get some steam into their run, having taken just two of a possible 15 points from their last two games.

It might be an interesting return for Calum Chambers as well, as he may be playing against his Arsenal teammates and would like to show Wenger that he is still up for the fight.

Rajeev mcallister
Sports Pundit staff writer

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