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Friday, July 3, 2020

Wolves v Arsenal: You should be sold on old gold

Wolves v Arsenal: You should be sold on old gold

Wolves are motoring towards a top-four finish, and Kevin Hatchard doesn't reckon Arsenal can slow their momentum.

Wolves v Arsenal
Saturday 04 July, 17:30
Live on Sky Sports Main Event

Wolves on track for glorious campaign

The regularity with which Wolves fans are having to pinch themselves has been at a painful level for some time. A team that has been starved of trophies for so long is on course for a genuine tilt at winning the Europa League, and qualification for the Champions League is a realistic ambition. Nuno's charges are just two points behind Chelsea in the Champions League race, and only three behind faltering Leicester City.
Wolves are trading at 4.40 in the Top 4 Finish market on the Exchange, and given their form and their upcoming fixtures, that seems like an enticing bet. Wolves don't face a team that's currently above them in the table until the final day, when they visit Chelsea. They have won five of their last six matches, keeping five clean sheets in that spell. If you stretch back further, they have leaked just two goals in their last eight top-flight matches.
Adama Traore's speed and trickery (he has completed more take-ons than any other Premier League player) has allowed him to make a difference for Wolves time and time again. He has set up the winner in two of his last three appearances, and should return to the starting line-up here. The Spaniard often tees up Raul Jimenez, and the Mexican striker has now scored 15 league goals this term.

Arsenal make small step on long road

With the US presidential election coming up in November, there'll be a lot of talk about news cycles in the next few months, and Arsenal are in the midst of a good one. Back-to-back Premier League victories, an FA Cup quarter-final win at Sheffield United and a breakthrough in contract talks with exciting young star Bukayo Saka have made for a fine few days. Manager Mikel Arteta even seems confident that captain and chief goal threat Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will follow Saka's example and sign a new deal.
However, Arsenal are still a long way off where they ultimately want to be. They find themselves six points adrift of Saturday's opponents Wolves, and eight points off the top four with just six games left. The Gunners have won just 11 league games, and no-one in the top half has a worse record in that regard. On the road, they have won just two of their last 15 Premier League away games. They have scored multiple goals in Premier League road matches just five times.
The underlying numbers don't make for great reading. Arsenal should be 11th in the table according to Infogol, and should have a negative goal difference. That suggests that even though Arsenal aren't pulling up any trees, their results are actually better than their performances deserve.
Arteta has no fresh injury concerns to deal with. Bernd Leno, Pablo Mari and Gabriel Martinelli are all still out, while Mesut Özil will have a back injury assessed before the game.

Wolves an attractive price for home win

Wolves are in superb shape, and Arsenal's away form over the course of the season and their underlying numbers suggest they will struggle here. They lost at Manchester City and Brighton, and they went down 3-1 at Molineux last season.
You have to go back to January for the last time that Wolves even conceded a league goal at home, and they have suffered just three home defeats in the top division this term. They are grinding out wins and clean sheets on a regular basis, and they will have had a longer rest than the Gunners.
I'll back Wolves to win at 2.34.

Wolves to rack up another shut-out?

There's an argument to say that if you are backing Wolves to win, it makes sense to back them to Win To Nil at a chunky 3.75 on the Sportsbook. Their last three victories have included a clean sheet.
Alternatively, you could use the OddsBoost markets on the Sportsbook to double up a Wolves win and an Under 4.5 Goals bet at [2.63]. Only one of Wolves' last nine PL games have featured more than four goals.

Who will win battle of the strikers?

Raul Jimenez has scored in six of his last 12 appearances for Wolves, and he has banged in 24 goals in all competitions. He is priced at 2.40 to score at any time. You could also back him to have a shot on target in each half at 4.00. He has had 38 shots on target across 32 PL appearances this term.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang grabbed a brace in a 4-0 win over Norwich on Wednesday, ending a four-game goalless streak. He has found the net in seven of his last 14 competitive matches. He is priced at 2.50 to score.