Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest
You could look at The Gunners’ last two outings and think Arteta’s men are having a wobble, considering their 13/14 wins in all competitions before last week. However, the 2-0 PSV defeat saw Arsenal dominate possession (30%-70%) in a match that was somewhat of a dead rubber with Group A whipping boys the last scheduled game to ensure qualification.
It was the same story in Southampton, with The Saints lucky to hang onto a share of the spoils in the end. Nevertheless, Arteta will be disappointed with the last week, as will his team, who are so used to winning this season. Despite Nottingham Forest’s monstrous result versus Liverpool last time out, Arsenal at The Emirates may be one step too far for the newly-promoted side.
Arsenal’s 19.4xG from 11 matches is second to only Manchester City in the Premier League. Similarly to the corner averages, Forest expectedly ranks near the top of the expected goals-against rankings with 19.1xGA in the same timeframe. With there expected to be nearly 2.0xG for Dean Henderson to contest with, we should fancy our chances of an Arsenal victory.
At The Emirates, Arsenal have recorded a 6.60 corners per90 average this term. For Nottingham Forest, they lead the Premier League in average corners conceded with 7.67 corners per90. So, it should be one-way traffic for extensive periods here, likely translating into Arsenal shots at goals, pressure in the final third, and corners of an Arsenal persuasion.
First up, let’s look at the visitors for cards. Nottingham Forest’s2.67 yellow cards per90 is second to only Manchester United (2.91) this season. Away from home throughout their six Premier League games on the road since promotion, Forest have served up a 2.17 cards per90 total for cards-backers.
The Gunners rank sixth in the Premier League for opponents’ yellow cards against. Therefore, the 2.00 cards per90 average at The Emirates fits nicely with the proposed O1.5 Cards selection for Steve Cooper’s eleven.
In the middle, Simon Hooper has the whistle for the afternoon slot. A 3.13 yellow card per90 total follows him into this game from eight top-flight matches in 2022/23. Last season, from 15 appearances in the Premier League, Hooper produced 3.07 yellows per90 total. It’s not the most significant tally, but it’s something for Nottingham Forest to work with as they come under waves of Arsenal attacks.