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Wolves logo
Premier League | Gameweek 24
Feb 10, 2022 at 7.45pm UK
Molineux
Arsenal logo
Wolves
0 - 1
Arsenal

Saiss (36'), Neves (60')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Magalhaes (25')
Partey (33'), Xhaka (45+1'), Magalhaes (61'), Martinelli (69')
Martinelli (69')

Preview: Wolverhampton Wanderers vs. Arsenal - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Premier League clash between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Top-four challengers Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal renew hostilities at Molineux for Thursday evening's Premier League encounter after the winter break.

Bruno Lage's men were dumped out of the FA Cup by Norwich City at the weekend, while the Gunners have not been in action since being held to a goalless stalemate by Burnley.


Match preview

Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Bruno Lage on January 22, 2022© Reuters

With no more Adama Traore producing his trademark bursting runs down the right wing, Wolves lacked a great deal of attacking bite at home to Norwich in the fourth round of the FA Cup and crashed out of the tournament in front of their own fans.

Kenny McLean's header on the stroke of half time was enough for the Canaries to break down this stubborn Wolves backline and advance to the fifth round, as Lage's men attempt to regroup and boost their European chances in the Premier League at the expense of Arsenal's.

Defeat to Norwich ended a four-game winning streak in all tournaments for Lage's side, who enter the contest having won each of their last three in the Premier League - a hot streak that has seen them establish themselves in eighth position - four points off the Champions League spots with a game in hand.

For a side with a realistic shot of making the top four, boasting the third-worst goals tally of 19 pinpoints where Wolves' downfall may lie, but only Manchester City (14) have shipped fewer goals than the Molineux outfit (16) this term.

Furthermore, only eight of Wolves' Premier League goals this season have come at Molineux - where they have won just one of their last four in the league - but Arsenal's lack of attacking inspiration is often well-documented.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta on January 23, 2022© Reuters

Arsenal fans were experiencing a sense of Mesut Ozil Deja vu during the Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Barcelona saga - another £300k+ per week player ostracized from the team and allowed to leave for Barcelona for nothing after a big-money arrival.

While many will point to the 32-year-old's lack of contributions this term, others will focus on a lack of January activity to negate the loss of Aubameyang, with soon-to-be free agents Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah now Mikel Arteta's only two central options for the remainder of the season.

Failure to land Dusan Vlahovic, Alexander Isak or Dominic Calvert-Lewin has not gone down well with Gooners - especially after they were held to a goalless draw by Burnley before the international break - making it five games without a win and four without a goal in all tournaments.

The Gunners only have the top four left to fight for now and enter Thursday's game lying sixth in the table and within touching distance of Manchester United - who have played a game more - so the onus is on their depleted attack to deliver the goods if a return to the promised land of the Champions League awaits them.

Arsenal do at least travel to Wolves on a two-game winning streak away from home in the Premier League, but the away crowd will need no reminding of last season's Molineux catastrophe, as red cards to Bernd Leno and David Luiz contributed to a 2-1 loss after defeat by the same scoreline at the Emirates Stadium earlier that year.

Wolverhampton Wanderers Premier League form:
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W

Wolverhampton Wanderers form (all competitions):
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Arsenal Premier League form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D

Arsenal form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • D



Team News

Arsenal's Takehiro Tomiyasu after sustaining an injury on December 18, 2021© Reuters

Wolves ought to welcome Romain Saiss back to the usual rearguard following the Africa Cup of Nations, as Toti Gomes drops out and Jose Sa returns in goal for veteran John Ruddy.

The hosts are still missing Jonny, Willy Boly, Pedro Neto, Yerson Mosquera and Hwang Hee-chan, and it remains to be seen if Francisco Trincao will be able to return from COVID-19 infection.

Raul Jimenez and Daniel Podence could form a two-man strikeforce if Trincao is not fit to play, meaning another midfield overload of Joao Moutinho, Ruben Neves and Leander Dendoncker.

As for Arsenal, Granit Xhaka and Thomas Partey are both back from suspension to form their familiar midfield pairing, but AFCON runner-up Mohamed Elneny may not return just yet.

Nicolas Pepe did join up with the group in Dubai and will be available, but Cedric Soares and Takehiro Tomiyasu are both injury concerns, leaving Arteta with a key decision to make at right-back.

Ben White will likely deputise in that area if required as Rob Holding features in defence, but Cedric is thought to have a relatively good chance of shaking off his hip problem to make himself available.

Wolverhampton Wanderers possible starting lineup:
Sa; Kilman, Coady, Saiss; Semedo, Neves, Dendoncker, Moutinho, Ait-Nouri; Jimenez, Podence

Arsenal possible starting lineup:
Ramsdale; Cedric, White, Gabriel, Tierney; Xhaka, Partey; Saka, Odegaard, Martinelli; Lacazette


SM words green background

We say: Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-1 Arsenal

Wolves and high-scoring affairs do not go hand in hand, and if Arsenal produce a performance as dire as their one against Burnley before the international break, fans may not get their money's worth here.

The potential loss of Tomiyasu could prove crucial for the Gunners, but with a wealth of youthful talent behind the main striker, Arteta's men should end their goal drought and shake hands on a point with their fellow European hopefuls.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data



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Data Analysis

Our analysis of all available data, including recent performances and player stats up until an hour before kickoff, suggested the most likely outcome of this match was a Arsenal win with a probability of 43.22%. A win for Wolverhampton Wanderers had a probability of 30.17% and a draw had a probability of 26.6%.

The most likely scoreline for an Arsenal win was 0-1 with a probability of 11.29%. The next most likely scorelines for that outcome were 1-2 (8.81%) and 0-2 (7.87%). The likeliest Wolverhampton Wanderers win was 1-0 (9.06%), while for a drawn scoreline it was 1-1 (12.63%). The actual scoreline of 0-1 was predicted with an 11.3% likelihood. Our data analysis correctly predicted a 0-1 win for Arsenal in this match.


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Game History

How you voted: Wolves vs Arsenal

Wolverhampton Wanderers
31.2%
Draw
23.2%
Arsenal
45.6%
423
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Today's games header
Tables header RHS
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool26186263253860
2Manchester CityMan City26185359263359
3Arsenal26184462233958
4Aston Villa26164656352152
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs25145652381447
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd26142103636044
7Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2610974941839
8West Ham UnitedWest Ham2611694046-639
9Wolverhampton WanderersWolves26115104040038
10Newcastle UnitedNewcastle26114115445937
11Chelsea25105104241135
12Fulham2695123642-632
13Crystal Palace2677123144-1328
14Bournemouth2577113347-1428
15Everton2687112834-625
16Brentford2674153748-1125
17Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest2666143448-1424
18Luton TownLuton2555153551-1620
19Burnley2634192558-3313
20Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd2634192266-4413

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