For a long time, Burnley and Arsenal were fairly much the antithesis of each other in footballing terms. At least, so the cliché points out. Burnley, dogged and determined yet frequently overachieving, paled in comparison to the financial muscle of the free-flowing footballing ways of their north London counterparts.
Usually with these stories, there’s a lovely endpoint where the tale comes full circle. But unfortunately for both sides, they’re in their own respective crises and playing a domestic fixture on a Thursday night.
To add to those woes, Arsenal and Burnley face two sides coming off big results – Southampton and Watford respectively – and morale could not be lower at either club.
Burnley are letting go of half their playing squad while Arsenal extended David Luiz’s contract. These truly are end times. Anyway, here’s four of the best bets from this Thursday night double-header.
There was a time where Arsenal being a bigger price in a W-D-W market against Southampton, regardless of where the game is, would be beyond comprehension. But such is the size of the hole they find themselves in, that they’ve no choice but to be that price.
And do we believe that Mikel Arteta is enough of a leader to guide in these times? His class shone in a record-breaking season for Man City where tweaks were technical and not brought on by a reality check.
For this reason and this reason alone, I can’t possibly side with them, nor do I think they’ll be coming back from a deficit, so I’m happy to double down and cover myself here.
If we believe that Southampton win this game, which nobody could scorn you for, then I think there’s plenty to like about the odds on offer. However, given my above reservations about Arsenal coming back from a deficit, it makes sense to back them to score first. If the suspect narrative comes in, then you’re guaranteed not to be out of pocket.
And if for some reason Arsenal throw away a lead again like they did against Brighton, well – even better.
Given the clear angst in the Arsenal camp, it wouldn’t be totally against their grain to see them lash out. They’re now part of a failing regime with no clear ambition or blueprint, and their latest ‘signings’ are just extending what seems to be a barren run of soulless existence.
I quite like Arsenal to have a player sent off, but I’m also quite keen on taking a hit on the price to include Southampton in this for the sole reason that they keep a very high line, and will likely be stretched by Arsenal’s pacey forward line.
Of course, we can’t forget about the other game kicking off at the same time (18.00). This one also paints a lovely picture for us, which in reality, we need due to the lack of your 50-year-old man shouting that the 19-year-old kid playing for his club is useless and won’t ever come to anything.
Burnley are 11th and nobody in the Premier League has overachieved as consistently over an extended period of time than Sean Dyche. And what has he to show for it? Absolutely nothing.
This game screams protest performance to me, where he’ll be making a very clear point to the Burnley board that he needs new players to enhance their identity and results.
Given that they’re already safe, technically limited and coming up against a side on a wave, a Watford win seems highly likely. It’s a tidy price, too.
Tips for Thursday night’s Premier League action at 18.00:
- Harry Maguire Consulting Boris Johnson On How To Change Direction More Rapidly
- Ranked: Football’s Best – And Worst – Beards Of Lockdown
- Leeds Fans Agree Championship Should End On Current Standings