Arsenal vs PSV
Mikel Arteta leads Arsenal into their first Champions League clash in six years on Wednesday, when Eredivisie side PSV Eindhoven are the visitors to the Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal are one of the teams backed to push champions Manchester City in both the Premier League and the Champions League, with the Champions League 2023 betting odds making the Gunners fourth favourites to win the European crown at odds of 11.00, and that shows just how far they have come under Arteta.
Arsenal are at SBOTOP odds of 1.45 to win Group B with Peter Bosz’ PSV expected to fight it out with Sevilla for second place, though Lens can’t be ignored.
Arsenal come into the game on the back of a hard-fought 1-0 win away to Everton while PSV hammered NEC 4-0; and the visitors will have their tails up, having qualified for the Champions League with a spectacular play-off win over Glasgow Rangers.
Martinelli doubt for Arsenal
A trip to Goodison Park has been a painful experience for Arsenal in recent seasons but they passed the test with flying colours on Sunday as Leandro Trossard brilliantly finished off a slick move to earn a 1-0 win over Everton on Merseyside, for the first time since Arsene Wenger was the manager in the 2017-18 campaign.
The Belgian attacking midfielder was only on the pitch after left winger Gabriel Martinelli had limped off midway through the first half. The Brazilian maestro felt a tweak in his hamstring as he raced through to score a goal which was ultimately given offside.
Martinelli will be checked over on Wednesday, but Arteta will not risk him if he is not 100 per cent fit, and Trossard is ready to stand in.
In other Champions League 2023 news, there is also a question over who will be the last line of defence for the Gunners on Wednesday, as David Raya played against the Toffees in a surprise move while England keeper Aaron Ramsdale was left on the bench.
It may be that Arteta was saving him for Arsenal’s return to the Champions League, or it could simply be a case of squad rotation; we will have to wait and see.
De Jong on fire for Eindhoven
Eindhoven came through their qualifier against Glasgow Rangers, drawing 2-2 in Scotland and then thumping the Gers 5-1 when they returned to the Netherlands.
It was a sweet revenge for the Dutch side, who were dumped out of the competition by Rangers at the same stage last season.
Skipper Luuk de Jong scored one goal and made an assist, and he has already made 14 goal contributions this year, scoring nine and assisting five. The former Barcelona and Netherlands star leads the line and will be an aerial threat on Wednesday.
PSV will be without wide man Noa Lang who limped off after just 11 minutes of the game against NEC, and that means Mexican winger Hirving Lozano is set to start.
Bosz has problems in defence, where Armando Obispo, Fredrik Oppegard, and Mauro Junior are all currently sidelined, and Arsenal will be prepared to exploit any weaknesses.
Eindhoven are 24 times Eredivisie winners and Champions League winners in 1988; and while Arsenal are 13 times English champions, they are yet to win the Champions League.
Wenger’s team came within a whisker in 2006 when they reached the final, only to be beaten 2-1 by Barcelona as the Catalans scored twice in the final 15 minutes.
But the last time the Emirates Stadium hosted a Champions League match, it turned into a nightmare for Arsenal as they lost 5-1 to Bayern Munich, having already gone down by the same scoreline in Bavaria.
The two teams have shared the spoils over their past seven meetings, with two wins each and three draws.
Arsenal are unbeaten in their four home games against the Dutch side, but PSV beat Arsenal 2-1 on aggregate in the last 16 of the 2006-07. PSV have only scored once away from home against the Gunners.
Both teams come into the game in superb form with five wins and a draw from their last six games and while the Gunners are unbeaten in seven, Eindhoven are unbeaten in 12.
At a price of 1.35 to win, Arteta’s team is expected to come through this opener relatively comfortably, with PSV priced at 6.56 and the draw at 4.36.
For a correct scoreline, 2-0 to Arsenal is the most likely outcome, at odds of 6.76, and against a team with changes in defence, that will be close to the mark.
A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR (⭐) BETS ARE WORTH:
⭐⭐⭐= €20 (HIGHLY CONFIDENT)
⭐⭐= €10 (CONFIDENT)
⭐= €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
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