Arsenal host Newcastle United at the Emirates this weekend, with the visitors seeking a first win in this fixture since April 2018.
Here’s all you need to know about that encounter on Saturday afternoon:
Arsenal’s 10-game unbeaten run in all competitions came crashing to an end as they were brutally dismantled by Liverpool at Anfield once again, suffering a hefty 4-0 defeat after a ruthless second-half showing from the Reds.
Old habits die hard for the Gunners as they once again crumbled under pressure against Jurgen Klopp’s side, the German having now overseen six successive home wins in this fixture in the league, scoring at least three goals on each occasion.
In truth, the visitors had in-form stopper Aaron Ramsdale to thank for ensuring the defeat did not turn into an outright humiliation, albeit with the Englishman himself admitting post-match that he perhaps could have done better to keep out Sadio Mane’s opener.
One man who enjoyed a particularly chastening evening was Nuno Tavares, the Portuguese left-back run ragged by Mohamed Salah and at fault for the hosts’ second after gifting possession to compatriot Diogo Jota, having kept his place ahead of the returning Kieran Tierney.
The Scotland international was on the bench for that defeat although is likely to return to the starting XI this weekend, with Granit Xhaka and Sead Kolasinac the only notable injury concerns for Mikel Arteta’s side.
The north Londoners have the chance to close the gap on the top four with victory on Saturday, three points currently separating them and fourth-placed West Ham United who face a tough-looking trip to the Etihad on Sunday to play the champions.
There may be a new man at the helm at St James’ Park but the same old problems remain, with Newcastle left having to rescue a point at home to Brentford on Saturday as their defensive woes once again came back to bite them.
With new boss Eddie Howe watching on from afar following an unfortunate positive Covid-19 test, the Magpies dazzled at times in attack in what was a breathless 3-3 draw, yet a Karl Darlow error and a Jamal Lascelles own goal epitomised the persistent frailties in the backline.
The start to the season under Steve Bruce had been plagued with defensive errors and it looks as if the former Bournemouth boss will have a real fight on his hands to shore up that leaky defence, with new recruits in January seemingly a necessity to spare them from the drop.
With still over a month to go until the winter window, however, Howe will need to ensure his new side aren’t cut adrift over the hectic festive schedule, the club currently rock-bottom of the table and five points from safety.
Newcastle remain the only top-flight side without a win this season after picking up six draws and six defeats from their opening 12 league games, with the clash with Arsenal a far from ideal meeting to end that winless run owing to their recent wretched form against the Gunners.
As for this weekend’s trip to the Emirates, it remains to be seen if the new manager will be able to attend the game, while Fabian Schar is a doubt after limping off at the weekend. Fellow defender Paul Dummett is the only definite absentee.
Newcastle 0-2 Arsenal, 2 May 2021
The two sides have already met three times in this calendar year – twice in the league and once in the FA Cup – with Arsenal running out winners on each occasion, as they have done on their last seven meetings in all competitions.
In fact, Newcastle haven’t scored against the north London side in their last six meetings, having last netted in a 2-1 defeat back in September 2018.
Mikel Arteta’s side took the lead inside just six minutes through Mohamed Elneny, the Egyptian netting his first Premier League goal for the club, before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang marked his return to the side in style to make it 2-0 after the break, having only recently recovered from a bout of malaria.
A late Fabian Schar red card would add to the home side’s misery, albeit with an unbeaten April having steered them away from danger above the relegation zone.
Arsenal: Ramsdale; Tomiyasu, White, Gabriel, Tierney; Partey, Lokonga; Saka, Odegaard, Smith Rowe; Aubameyang
Newcastle: Darlow; Schar, Lascelles, Clark; Murphy, Willock, Shelvey, Ritchie; Joelinton, Saint-Maximin, Wilson
Who is the referee?
What channel is Arsenal v Newcastle on?
UK and Irish readers can watch – or stream – the match on BT Sport.
What time is kick off?
Saturday 27 November, 12:30 GMT
Arsenal – 2/5
Newcastle – 6/1
Draw – 7/2
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Author: Robbie Walls