Arsenal vs Burnley match build up

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TEAM NEWS

Shkodran Mustafi and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are also ruled out, but Sead Kolasinac will be assessed and Sokratis is available after suspension. Arsenal’s defensive crisis looks set to continue for the visit of Burnley, with Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin and Konstantinos Mavropanos all sidelined.

Burnley winger Aaron Lennon has had a knee operation, which will keep him out until the New Year. Johann Berg Gudmundsson and Robbie Brady could be fit after injuries.

MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTES

Arsenal v Burnley

Jonathan Pearce: Arsenal’s long unbeaten run will be consigned to the distant past if they lose. A third defeat in a row in all competitions would endanger their top four hopes.

One or two looked jaded against Spurs in the Carabao Cup and the defence is still too easily sliced apart. But they’re unbeaten in 10 against Burnley and they haven’t lost against a side in the bottom three in 11 years.

Privately Sean Dyche will know they’re deep in trouble. Constantly punching above their weight has taken its toll. Opposition sides have worked them out.

I think they’ll stay up. But Arsenal’s firepower should win this.

VIEW FROM THE DUGOUT

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery on the future of Mesut Ozil: “Every player wants to play and be okay to help the team when we need.

“The frustration is the same for everybody when they didn’t play in a match. But I spoke with him and with the regularity in the season, I am telling him what we need from him and he has the commitment to help us, and the quality and the characteristics to help us, when the team needs his moments in the pitch in one game.

“Tomorrow he is in the squad.”

Burnley manager Sean Dyche on implementing a 3-4-3 formation against Spurs: “I played in it myself and I know how the system works, I think the timing, the use of the right players at the right time, and loads of different things go into the thinking.

“It has to suit the players first, and when I looked at the group we’re moulding, and they way they were operating, I thought it was a good time to try it.

“So I think there was a bit of common sense in the defensive format of it, and it’s how you find the balance to be a real strong attacking threat. I think that’s something we’ll play around with, but it’s good they delivered it, because it gives you another base to work from if and when you feel it’s appropriate.”

LAWRO’S PREDICTION

I think Arsenal will beat Burnley. It won’t be straightforward, though. The Clarets have got a bit of their mojo back recently.

Prediction: 2-0

MATCH FACTS

Head-to-head

  • Arsenal are unbeaten in their past 10 matches against Burnley, winning nine and conceding just four goals.
  • Burnley have lost all six competitive fixtures at the Emirates by an aggregate score of 18-3.
  • The Clarets last won away in this fixture in 1974 – they have lost the subsequent seven matches.

Arsenal

  • Arsenal sustained a first defeat in 15 Premier League games at Southampton last time out (W10, D4).
  • They have lost just two of their 18 home Premier League games in 2018, with both defeats coming against Manchester City.
  • Arsenal could lose consecutive Premier League fixtures for the first time since the opening two games of the season.
  • They have won their last 27 home league matches against sides in the relegation zone since a 4-4 draw with Tottenham in 2008.
  • The Gunners have not lost at home to a team in the bottom three for 11 years, a 1-0 loss to West Ham.
  • They have not led at half-time in any of their 17 Premier League games this season (level in 13 and behind in four).
  • Unai Emery has made a league-high 15 substitutions before the start of the second half.
  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been directly involved in 27 goals in 30 Premier League appearances, scoring 20 and assisting seven.

Burnley

  • Burnley have won just once in 10 league fixtures, drawing two and losing seven.
  • They have earned just six points from their last 11 away matches, while they have failed to score in seven.
  • A defeat for the Clarets would mean they spend Christmas in the relegation zone. They were seventh on Christmas day last season.
  • They have lost all eight matches to teams in the top half of the table in 2018-19, by an aggregate score of 23-4.
  • Burnley have triumphed only once in 28 attempts versus top six teams (D6, L21), a 3-2 victory at Chelsea on the opening day of last season.
  • They did not register a shot on target for the third time this season in the loss at Tottenham. No other side has done so more than once.
  • The Clarets have conceded a league-high eight goals in the final 10 minutes of matches.
  • Burnley have not won any of their last 23 top-flight away games in December since beating West Bromwich Albion 1-0 in 1969.
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