Arsenal vs Bolton: Gunners can finally kick-start season with a win
Arsene Wenger got given the dreaded vote of confidence from the Arsenal board earlier in the week and their apparent faith should be rewarded with a victory at the Emirates this Saturday.
They won’t have it all their own way though as Arsenal’s injury woes continue to hold them back
Yossi Benayoun is out after picking up a muscle strain in their mid-week win against Shrewsbury, as is Johan Djourou.
The physicality of Nigel Reo-Coker and Fabrice Muamba will make it difficult for Arsenal’s depleted midfield and it promises to be a close affair…
Arsenal are clear favourites to win at 4/9 despite being in the midst of their worst league start in nearly 60 years.
They have a good record against the Trotters and have not lost at home since 1962, although they did suffer defeat at the Reebok last term.
Bolton have lost nine of their last ten Premier League games and the Gunners should bag all three points.
However, the Gunners are 16/1 to lead at the interval and end with a draw which looks well worth a punt considering four of their six league goals this season have come before half-time and Bolton bagged two in the second half against Aston Villa in the week.
The Gunners’ disastrous self-destruction at Blackburn last weekend showed just how fragile their defence currently is.
In their last eight Premier League games, a goal has been scored in the final 15 minutes and it’s 2/1 that most Bolton goals will come in the second half.
Having banged in 18 goals last term, Arsenal captain Robin van Persie is 3/1 to be the first goalscorer and found the net the last time these sides met.
All three of Bolton’s goals against the Gunners last term were headers. The defensive frailties Arsenal have shown this season – especially at set pieces – will be further compounded by Djourou’s absence.
Gary Cahill is 14/1 to score at any time.