Author: Tony MacDonald
West Bromwich Albion
Published: 13:06 23/11/2014
West Brom play host to Arsenal at the Hawthorns on Saturday 29th November, the Premier League game previewed by the Baggies' official digital betting partner Freebets.com
Despite having the home advantage, the match odds to the right (mobile users scroll down) show West Brom to be outsiders for the game, presenting those who fancy Albion get a result against Arsenal with a golden opportunity.
Last Time Out
The damage was already done away to Chelsea when Claudio Yacob saw red for a two-footed lunge on Diego Costa. It was Costa who had opened the scoring on 11 minutes with a well taken chest-down and volley from Oscar's through ball, before Eden Hazard was left free to convert a Cesc Fabregas corner on 25 minutes. Moments later Yacob went flying in and was duly given his marching orders, but one positive to take from the game was that WBA did not suffer any further punishment and managed to keep the score at 2-0 despite their numerical disadvantage.
Baggies boss Alan Irvine was far from pleased with what he had seen, particularly that Hazard was left unmarked for the second goal. "We had a game plan that was made more difficult by the first goal, which I think was offside. But the second one I was disappointed about - we pride ourselves on being organised at set-pieces and we weren't as organised as we should have been." he told BBC Sport in a post-match interview.
Who Will Win?
West Brom have conceded at least 2 goals in 6 of their last 7 home matches in the Premier League, but the way Arsenal tried unsuccessfully to walk it in against Man Utd suggests the Baggies may be about to improve in that department. The Gunners will still be smarting from Saturday's defeat where they failed to turn their dominance into goals, with poor finishing ultimately costing them the game as they failed to take their chances. There's also Arsenal's Champions League date with Borussia Dortmund to consider which could result in tired legs on Saturday, while the Baggies will have a full week to prepare for the game.
Arsenal have won five of the last six meetings between the sides, albeit one of those was on penalties following a 1-1 draw in the Capital One Cup. This fixture ended as a 1-1 draw last season with Jack Wilshere's equaliser cancelling out the now suspended Claudio Yacob's first half strike.
Arsenal are in a bit of a rut at the moment and backing them here would be a risky proposition, while the hosts have not been at their best in recent weeks either and it's the draw which makes appeal at 14/5 with bet365.
Will There Be Goals?
There have been under 2.5 goals scored in West Brom's last 3 games, but over 2.5 in the last 3 Premier League outings for Arsenal. The 1-0 win for Arsenal at the Emirates last season ended a run of both teams scoring over the previous three meetings, while the Baggies have found the net at least once in each of the last four home games against this opponent.
Both sides tend to register a goal or two when they meet, but the last three meetings have seen under 2.5 scored, so playing the Both Teams To Score market would perhaps be a better choice for this match.
Who Will Score?
West Brom's reliance on Saido Berahino is becoming all too apparent as results have taken a bit of a nose-dive since his goals have dried up. He's likely to fair better against Arsenal's injury hit defence though, and having seemingly taken over Chris Brunt's penalty duties he makes most appeal as a First Goalscorer selection for the hosts.
Alexis Sanchez has been Arsenal's main danger man in recent weeks and will be hard to keep quiet for 90 minutes. He and Danny Welbeck look the pick of the bunch for anyone fancying the visitors to notch first.
Correct Score Prediction
West Brom 1 - 1 Arsenal - 7/1 bet365