Arsenal vs Leicester City - Predictions, Betting Odds & Picks
- Arsenal has displayed much greater resilience and solidity in its recent outings
- Leicester has been pulled back into the top-four race but registered much-needed weekend win
- Arsenal will be determined to end season on a high regardless of European qualification
|What||Arsenal vs Leicester City|
|Where||Emirate Stadium, London, England|
|When||Tuesday, 7 July 2020, 3.15 PM EST|
|How to watch||NBC Sports|
Arsenal is perhaps the most inconsistent and unpredictable team in the Premier League. On its day the north London team can be disciplined, hard to beat and creative in attack. Yet when things are not going well, it can be blunt upfront and a shambles at the back. The difference between Good Arsenal and Bad Arsenal is so vast that Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde would have aroused little suspicion in comparison.
Yet it is clear that Arsenal has made strides forward since Mikel Arteta replaced Unai Emery at the helm in December. The team keeps a better shape out of possession and is much more well organized, while it also has a greater collective structure in attack, meaning it is less reliant on flurries of individual magic that tend to be unsustainable in the long run.
There have been bumps in the road, and Arsenal was deservedly criticized after it returned from the three-month break with a 3-0 defeat by Manchester City and a 2-1 loss to Brighton and Hove Albion. But its response since then has been magnificent: three games, three wins, three clean sheets.
The latest triumph came over Wolverhampton Wanderers, which is now only three points above Arsenal in the table. A Champions League place still seems a long shot for the Gunners, but defeating third-placed Leicester City on Tuesday would keep its slim hopes alive, provided Manchester City’s two-season ban from the continental competition is upheld by the Court of Arbitration for Sport next week.
Arsenal vs Leicester City Odds
|Match winner and total goals||Odds|
|Arsenal and Over 3.5||+450 |
|Arsenal and Under 3.5||+220 |
|Leicester and Under 3.5||+310 |
Odds taken from BetMGM.
Arsenal has long been considered a flaky, leaderless team that does not relish a physical battle and lacks mental strength. Arteta is keen to change that image, and the early evidence suggests Pep Guardiola’s former assistant at Manchester City has already had an effect.
Arsenal’s run of three consecutive clean sheets bodes well for its chances of overcoming Leicester, which had been struggling in attack prior to Saturday’s 3-0 triumph over Crystal Palace. Backing the host and under 3.5 goals looks like the way to go here.
Arsenal Is Much Better Balanced but Is Far From a Complete Side
There is clearly considerable work for Arsenal to do before it can become a Champions League regular – never mind a title challenger – once more. Upgrades are possible in virtually every area of the pitch, and Arteta will also be keen to secure greater strength in depth this summer and beyond.
Nevertheless, Arsenal supporters will be buoyed by the recent emphasis on clean sheets. The team does not have the best individual center-halves around, but the switch to a back three has made the overall unit more solid, once again proving that defending is a collective art.
The current Arsenal team is, therefore, better balanced than the one which went before it, which will be vital against a Leicester side with plenty of creativity and speed in its ranks.
Finishing Outside the Top Four Would Be a Disappointment for Leicester
Had it been offered it back in the summer, Leicester would have been happy with a fifth or sixth-place finish this season. After all, this is Brendan Rodgers’ first full campaign at the helm, and Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur were all more fancied than the Foxes to finish behind Liverpool and Manchester City.
But finishing outside the top four would now be interpreted very differently. Leicester have spent long stretches of this season in the top two and held an eight-point lead over fifth when the Premier League made its return last month. Yet a return of two points from a possible nine against Watford, Brighton and Everton has eaten away at its advantage.
In the end Leicester was comfortable against Palace, although it still relied on two opposition errors for three of its goals at the King Power Stadium. Rodgers’ side is not as fluent as it was in the first half of the season, and Arsenal will be confident of taking advantage.
Arsenal Ground Out Win Over Wolves and Could Do So Again Here
During the latter half of Arsene Wenger’s tenure as Arsenal boss, his team was regularly praised for the beauty of its soccer. At times it seemed as if the style had trumped success as the most important thing at the Emirates Stadium.
Arteta wants his side to play attractive soccer, but he has already shown that it must be combined with intensity, aggression, and discipline. Its performance against Wolves on Saturday was not the prettiest, but Arsenal got the job done and left Molineux with all three points. A similar display could be on the cards on Tuesday.
Take the Arsenal and Under 3.5 option here – Arteta’s men are in fine form and a high-scoring encounter is unlikely given the two teams’ recent results.