Arsenal overpriced: Manchester United v Arsenal Premier League Preview
Arsenal travel to Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday. Infogol’s Analyst previews the big game, using expected goals (xG) to generate the best bets.
Manchester United Expected Goals
Sunday’s game at Old Trafford, which pits second against fourth, also sees Alexis Sánchez line up against his old team Arsenal, however the Chilean forward is yet to impress all fans of his new club.
He scored seven goals for Arsenal (one every 228 minutes) before his January move, but has only notched twice in the Premier League for Man Utd (one goal every 410 minutes). He has, however, contributed three assists in his 819 minutes on the pitch for the Red Devils, the same amount as he managed in twice as long for Arsenal.
Perhaps surprisingly, United have lost two of their last five games, against Sevilla and West Brom, however they were a little unfortunate on each occasion and wins in 2018 against Chelsea, Liverpool and Man City suggest that Jose Mourinho is living up to his reputation of getting his tactics right for the big games.
While a lot of the focus will be on Sanchez, the key moments may fall to Romelu Lukaku (16 Premier League goals, 15.07 xG) and Jesse Lingard (8 Premier League goals, 6.91 xG), while the likes of Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial remain potent dangers, though both will likely start on the bench.
Arsenal Expected Goals
Henrikh Mkhitaryan went the other way as part of the Sanchez deal, and he has impressed in the main at Arsenal, already notching four assists (only one less than at United) in half the time on the pitch.
Mkhitaryan isn’t the chief goalmaker for the Gunners, though, with Mesut Özil (8) and Aaron Ramsey (7) responsible for setting up a large chunk of their Premier League goals this season, much to the delight of leading scorer Alexandre Lacazette.
Lacazette - who also scored in the Europa League on Thursday - has 13 Premier League goals to his name – six more than his closest rival Ramsey, though it’s worth noting that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has already scored six since joining from Borussia Dortmund (one goal every 128 minutes).
Whoever starts will have an edge when it comes to the first-goalscorer markets, with Aubameyang possibly more likely to play given his Europa League ineligibility, so it might make more sense to back Lacazette to score last.
He did so against Stoke, CSKA Moscow and West Ham, all over the last month, and the Frenchman will be a big danger to Man Utd as long as he is on the pitch.
The Infogol model forecasts that both sides – which are full of quality attacking players – will get on the score sheet, as they have in the last four meetings. Jose Mourinho normally gets his tactics right for the big games, but 13/2 about an Arsenal win looks far too big, especially considering the form that Alexandre Lacazette is in and the general good feeling about the club since Arsene Wenger announced he was leaving.
Both teams to score @ 10/11
Arsenal to win @ 13/2
Alexandre Lacazette to score last @ 7/1