Arsenal’s penchant for no-frills Emirates wins suggests their manager may have a private admiration for Jose Mourinho and the visit of Cardiff rates perfect fodder for a 5/2 home win/under 2.5 goals double.
While certain types of tan – the bottled or spray-on variety for instance – remain enduringly popular in south Wales, Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan is not one of them.
Goal-hungry Gooners will have been starving themselves like pythons dreaming of an epic meal ahead of the visit of a club whose owner seems hell-bent its destruction, expecting a riot.
Yet the objects of their ardour have seldom seen fit to over indulge the north London die-hards this term, registering twice or less in 12 of their 14 home games.
A greater emphasis on a well-drilled backline has lent itself kindly to the accumulation of low-scoring victories.
Of Arsenal’s joint Premier League-lowest six home concessions three came in their still-sleepy season opener against Aston Villa.
In fact Everton are the only side to score against the Gunners on home turf in six games.
Meanwhile Chelsea are the sole visitors to deny their hosts a goal during that sequence, with all six games limboing the 2.5 goal bar.
Perhaps Cardiff should begin rowing to away games in a longboat because they’re hardly a pack of rampaging Vikings on their forays beyond Wales at present.
They may have snapped a four-game goalless run against Liverpool at Anfield on their last road trip, but given Arsenal’s stoic defence it’s hard to imagine the visitors troubling the under 2.5 goals part of our wager.
Indeed it’s arguably the festive appetites of their hosts that could provide the greater bother on that front, with the Gunners bound to be in ebullient mood as they start 2014 at the top of the shop.
However the loss of Aaron Ramsey is fancied to throw a monkey wrench in those particular works.
The Welshman starred in Arsenal’s win at the Cardiff City Stadium and he’s made more league appearances than any of their outfield players bar the comically overburdened Olivier Giroud this term.
Indeed to say only this is to hugely underplay the former Bluebird’s contribution to the his current employers’ goalscoring cause this season.
When it comes to Premier League contribution, Ramsey is the Gunners’ joint-leading scorer, second-highest assister and their most prolific passer and player of accurate through balls.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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