Arsenal vs Burnley Preview: Gunners look to win their first home game of the campaign
Photo: Getty Images - Stuart McFarlane

Arsenal vs Burnley Preview: Gunners look to win their first home game of the campaign

The Gunners aim to start the season with back to back victories.

TJ Wedderburn

In the Premier League’s early kick-off, Arsenal host Sean Dyche’s Burnley. Both teams head into this fixture on the back of opening day wins and will be looking to maintain a strong start to the season.

The Gunners’ 1-0 success against Newcastle United last weekend was their first opening day victory since 2012. Having started the last campaign with two defeats, Unai Emery’s men will be eager to pick up where they left off against the Magpies and make it two wins from two.

Team News

Despite signing a total of six new players in the transfer window, none of them featured in the starting XI for Arsenal last time out. However, Nicolas Pepe, Gabriel Martinelli, David Luiz and Dani Ceballos were all named on the bench- with Pepe, Martinelli and Ceballos making an appearance in the second half.

Rob Holding, Hector Bellerin and Kieran Tierney are still working their way towards full fitness, whilst Saed Kolasinac and Mesut Ozil are available for selection after recent off-field issues. Granit Xhaka has emerged as a late doubt having suffered a lower back injury in training.

The visitors will be without Robbie Brady, Charlie Taylor and long term absentee Steven Defour, while new arrival Danny Drinkwater is still some way off match fitness.

Predicted Line-ups

Arsenal: Leno, Maitland-Niles, Luiz, Sokratis, Monreal, Ceballos, Torreira, Mkhitaryan, Ozil, Pepe, Aubameyang.

Burnley: Pope, Lowton, Tarkowski, Mee, Pieters, Gudmundsson, Cork, Westwood, McNeil, Wood, Barnes.

Two buoyant sides

In terms of playing style, Arsenal and Burnley couldn’t be much further apart. Emery prefers his side to play a slick passing game, pressing from the front and keeping a high defensive line. Whereas Dyche is a much more pragmatic manager, who tends to sit his team in two blocks of four and will go direct for counter-attacking opportunities.

Be that as it may, both teams will be confident of getting a result. Burnley overcame Southampton on the opening day of the season in a stunning 3-0 victory, with striker Ashley Barnes keeping up his outstanding record against the saints with a brace. Hosts Arsenal successfully navigated a tricky away trip to Newcastle, winning 1-0 in a close encounter.