12 April 2019
Rocked by a 1-0 PL loss to Everton, Arsenal prepare to take on Napoli at the Emirates Stadium for the first leg of their Europa League quarter-finals tie.
Sunday’s loss to the Toffees brought the hosts’ four-game winning run across all competitions to an end, and it was also the first time the Gunners have failed to find the net since a 1-0 loss to BATE Borison back in February. Interestingly, five of the previous seven Arsenal’s wins have seen them beating their rivals to nil, which has been quite atypical for them this term. The fact that Unai Emery’s men have struggled to keep a clean sheet in 10 of their last 15 competitive outings says enough about their defensive frailties. However, the Premier League giants have been impressive at home this season, securing 20 wins in 25 home games across all competitions (W20, D3, L2) while scoring 2+ match goals 18 times in the process.
Meanwhile, the visitors come into this meeting off the back of a frustrating 1-1 home draw with Genoa in Serie A, which was a second straight match in which they’ve failed to pick up all three points after a disappointing 2-1 road loss to Empoli. Napoli’s road record in Europe this term has been far from encouraging, given the fact they’ve pulled off just one win on five international road trips (W1, D2, L2). Having joined the EL knockout stage after failing to go past the Champions League group phase, the Partenopei have clinched a 3-1 road win over Zurich prior to a 3-1 loss to Salzburg in the previous round. Just like Arsenal, Carlo Ancelotti’s players have been struggling for a clean slate, especially when playing away from home. The Blues have conceded at least one goal in 11 of 15 of their previous road clashes across all competitions, allowing over 1.5 goals per match four times though.
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