Two of the Premier League’s most out of form teams will pit their records against one another when sixth-place Arsenal hosts Southampton at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday. The two teams boast a combined total of one win from each of their last six games, and Unai Emery is under extreme pressure to bag three points at home.
Arsenal vs. Southampton
When: Saturday, November 23
Time: 10:00 a.m. ET
Live Stream: fuboTV (watch for free)
Tuesday evening brought the news that Mauricio Pochettino had been Tottenham Hotspur, perhaps the less expected dismissal in north London during this international break. Emery may count himself fortunate not to have been the first to go considering Arsenal has won once in its last seven games, still licking its wounds from a 2-0 loss at Leicester City in Week 12.
Saints chief Ralph Hasenhuttl doesn’t have the same weight of expectation on the south coast, but there’s a growing sense the Austrian is also riding the last of his luck at St. Mary’s Stadium.
Hasenhuttl’s first win as a manager in England was a 3-2 surprise result against Arsenal in December at home, though the Premier League appears more wise to his tactics now.
His side hasn’t won a match in its last seven outings and suffered defeat in six of those. A 1-1 draw away to the Wolverhampton Wanderers last month accounts for the only point Southampton has claimed from the last possible 21.
As fate would have it, the Gunners’ last Premier League point came following a 1-1 draw of their own against the Wolves on Nov. 2. Following a 2-2 result against Crystal Palace one week prior, this was the second home game in a row that Arsenal lost a lead to a draw.
The same happened again in its Europa League visit to Vitoria on Nov. 6 when Bruno Duarte scored late and canceled out Shkodran Mustafi’s 80th-minute opener.
There won’t be any excuses for Arsenal should it fail to clinch maximum spoils on Saturday. Dani Ceballos is the only injury concern after he suffered a hamstring injury before the international break, giving the manager an almost fully fit selection.
Southampton has a limited injury list, too, with the Republic of Ireland forward Michael Obafemi being its only concern before the trip to north London.
Hasenhuttl’s side surprised Arsenal on home soil in December, but the Saints haven’t beaten the Gunners away from home in league competition since November 1987.
Defeat at the Emirates could spell the end of either manager’s reign depending on the nature of the result, with both bosses feeling the heat approaching a tense winter schedule.
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