Arsenal vs Crystal Palace on MNF: Vieira to haunt Gunners?

Team news, stats and prediction ahead of Arsenal vs Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Monday Night Football; kick-off 8pm.

Team news

Arsenal remain without Granit Xhaka for the Premier League visit of Crystal Palace on Monday Night Football.

The midfielder suffered ligament damage in his right knee during last month’s win over Tottenham and will be missing until around the new year.

Gabriel Martinelli (muscular) could also be absent while Mikel Arteta will check his international stars all returned unscathed.

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Mikel Arteta urges Arsenal fans to give Patrick Viera the welcome he deserves when Crystal Palace visit Arsenal on Monday Night Football

Crystal Palace boss Patrick Vieira has reported a clean bill of health from his international players who have returned from World Cup qualifying duty.

Nathan Ferguson and Ebere Eze (both Achilles) continue to make good progress with their respective recoveries, but the pair will not be rushed back into first-team action.

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Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira confirms that Eberechi Eze is back in training with the squad, but won’t be rushed back after a lengthy injury

Vieira, who returns to Arsenal after spending nine trophy-laden years as a player there between 1996 and 2005, could hand a starting spot to Michael Olise after his impressive contribution as a substitute in the pre-international break draw with Leicester.


Monday 18th October 7:00pm


Kick off 8:00pm

Sky Sports Premier League HD
Sky Sports Premier League HD

How to follow

Arsenal vs Crystal Palace is live on Sky Sports Premier League from 7pm; kick-off 8pm. Sky Sports customers can watch in-game clips in the live match blog on the Sky Sports website and app. Highlights will also be published on the Sky Sports digital platforms and the Sky Sports Football YouTube channel shortly after the final whistle.

Last time out…

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Brighton’s draw against Arsenal in the Premier League

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Crystal Palace’s draw against Leicester City in the Premier League

Jones Knows’ prediction

Arsenal have won five of their last six home games in all competitions. This has coincided with a much-improved defensive performance in recent weeks, keeping three clean sheets in their last four games with the defensive axis of Aaron Ramsdale, Gabriel and Ben White showing some promising early signs. I think they’ll have too much for Palace here.

Following Emile Smith Rowe in various shots and goalscorer markets has been a profitable strategy so far this season and there is no reason to ditch him just yet, especially with confidence flowing having netted three goals in his last five games for club and country. Despite playing in a very advanced role for Mikel Arteta, he is still being priced up by the markets as an inconsistent wide player with little end product.

There is no way we’ll be getting prices like 10/11 with Sky Bet for him to have at least one shot on target in a few months. It’s a bet that would have won in nine of his last 10 appearances in all competitions both domestically and internationally with his only failure to hit the target coming in the defeat at Manchester City when Arsenal hardly ventured out of their own half. I’d expect the Gunners to dominate territory for large chunks of this encounter which should see Smith Rowe come to the fore in dangerous areas. He can hit the target.

SCORE PREDICTION: 2-0

BETTING ANGLE: Emile Smith Rowe to have at least one shot on target (10/11 with Sky Bet)

Opta stats

  • Arsenal have won just one of their last six Premier League meetings with Crystal Palace (D4 L1), though it was in their last such meeting in May (3-1 at Selhurst Park).
  • Crystal Palace are unbeaten in their last three Premier League away games against Arsenal (W1 D2). The Eagles had only avoided defeat in three of their previous 16 visits to Highbury/Emirates Stadium in league competition (W1 D2 L13).
  • Arsenal have won their last seven Premier League home games played on a Monday, scoring 15 goals and conceding just twice in return.
  • After an 11-game winless run in Premier League London derbies, Crystal Palace won their last such match 3-0 against Tottenham. The Eagles haven’t won consecutive league derby matches since April 2017, which included a 3-0 win against Arsenal.
  • Arsenal have won four of their last five Premier League home games (L1), as many as they had in their previous 15 at the Emirates combined.
  • Crystal Palace have conceded more goals from outside the box than any other side in the Premier League this season (5). However, just two of Arsenal’s last 35 league goals have been from distance, with Willian (vs West Brom in May) and Martin Ƙdegaard (vs Burnley this season) netting direct free-kicks.
  • Coming into this weekend’s games, no side has conceded more first-half goals in the Premier League than Arsenal (6). However, no other team have scored fewer goals before half-time than Crystal Palace this term (1).
  • Crystal Palace manager Patrick Vieira made 279 Premier League appearances for Arsenal, with only five players making more for the club in the competition. Vieira will be just the fourth person to have played for the Gunners in the Premier League and then managed against them in the competition, after David O’Leary (W3 D2 L9), Tony Adams (L1) and Remi Garde (L1).
  • Of goalkeepers to play more than once in the Premier League this season, Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsdale has the best minutes per goal conceded ratio, with the Gunners conceding just one goal every 360 minutes on average with the Englishman in goal. However, teammate Bernd Leno has the joint-worst such ratio in the competition this term (one every 30 minutes).
  • Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha has been pressured by opponents more often than any other player in the Premier League this season (341), while the Ivorian has also been fouled more than anyone else in the competition this term (24).

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