England Premier League
Monday 15th April 2019
Kick off at 8pm BST
Venue: Vicarage Road
All of Watford’s direct rivals for 7th place lost at the weekend and The Hornets have a chance to claim back that position and go 2 points clear if they can beat Arsenal at Vicarage Road.
It has been a good few weeks for the club who beat Fulham 4-1 in the league and followed that up by reaching the FA Cup final with a stunning 3-2 comeback over Wolves after being two goals down. They will play Manchester City in the final and while they will inevitably be the outsiders to win the cup it has given the club a boost and the players will come into this game very confident.
At home Watford have won 8 of their 15 games but more importantly recent home form has been very good, unbeaten in their last 5 games and they come into this match having won 3 in a row.
Arsenal will be, of course, a formidable opponent but if The Gunners play like they did in their last game away to Everton then Watford will have reasons to be cheerful.
Everton defeated Arsenal 1-0 and Unai Emery’s team looked like a shadow of the one that has long threatened a top 4 place for much of the season. While Emery’s debut season with the Londoners may be remembered as a solid one, their away form has not been satisfying enough in the Premier League. They have won just once in their past five games on the road and have lost 3 of those matches.
Disappointingly for The Gunners they also have a -2 goal difference record on the road and are almost conceding 2 goals a game away.
Still this is a highly important fixture for Arsenal who have slipped to 6th place and 3 points behind Chelsea for 4th. The Gunners do have a game in hand of The Blues but lose or draw this match and that will be another game played with just 5 more left and could be a severe blow to their top 4 chances given that Manchester United and Tottenham are also in the mix.
Watford: Tom Cleverley is still out after his calf injury last month, the club were hoping that the player would be available by now. Gerard Deulofeu should be back in contention after his ankle injury as he has trained all week. The same applies to Femenia after his minor knock. Jose Holebas has been ruled out with his hamstring. Isaac Success is 50/50 to return after his knock. Adalberto Penaranda is 50/50 after his hamstring injury and has been training away from the squad
Arsenal: Sokratis has a 2 game ban for collecting 10 yellow cards and will miss this encounter. There is no update on Granit Xhaka’s groin injury and it is believed that he could miss this game after being absent for the clubs previous two matches
Watford vs Arsenal Head to Head:
Earlier this season at The Emirates Arsenal beat Watford 2-0.
Last season Watford won this fixture 2-1.
There is a 90% success rate to see over 2.5 goals.
Watford vs Arsenal Prediction:
Last season was the first time since 1999 that there had been under 2.5 goals in this fixture, and over goals will be on our radar for this game. As for how this will play out, it is clear that unless we see a vintage Arsenal display which more or less means that Mesut Ozil will put in a rare super performance that this will be a game dominated by the confidence of the home side.
Arsenal had a poor game here last season and while The Gunners can more than take care of opposition like Watford at home, they have struggled through the years to deal with danger teams just inside the top 10 - think of Bolton and Stoke from the 1990s and 2000s. We do think we will see a very entertaining game on Monday night full of goals and incident. It might be worth putting a small stake on Arsenal’s Shkodran Mustafi who has scored in the last two meetings against Watford
Watford vs Arsenal Betting Tips:
Over 2.5 goals at 1.57
Anytime goalscorer: Troy Deeney at 3.00
Anytime goalscorer: Shkodran Mustafi at 9.00
Sending off in the match at 4.50