Arsenal are in the type of form that sustained Arsene Wenger’s managerial career for at least two or three more seasons.
That is to say, they go on a remarkable run of wins at a time in the season when it’s not really vital to do so. Six league wins in a row looks great, and is great.
However, since losing their opening two fixtures to Chelsea and Manchester City, only one of the teams they’ve played, and beaten, currently sit in the top half of the table.
They can be accused of being untested in recent weeks.
The visit of Claude Puel’s Leicester City side should provide a bit more of an acid test to the Gunners on Monday evening.
The Foxes have a perfect 50/50 record, if there is such a thing. Four games at home, two wins and two losses. Four games away, two wins and two losses.
A 2-1 defeat at home to Everton underlined their inconsistency and unreliability.
It’s almost cliché to say this game brings goals. Previews surrounding either Leicester or Arsenal are typically teeming with ‘over total goals’ tips.
Every cliché has an element of truth. This one more than most. Arsenal average 2.5 total goals when playing at the Emirates stadium this season. Leicester’s away-day average is 3.0 total goals per game.
In the last ten meetings between these two sides there’s been a total goals average of 3.1.
In terms of the match win, Arsenal are looking an ever improving prospect. There’s a linear direction in which their form has gone since the arrival of Wenger’s successor, Unai Emery. That direction has strictly been upwards.
Whereas, form-wise, Leicester have been spinning and twirling in every direction imaginable this season. Decent victories over Wolves and away to Newcastle have been tempered by no-show performances against Bournemouth and Everton.
Arsenal trio Danny Welbeck, Mesut Ozil and Ainsley Maitland-Niles have all returned to full training.
Sokratis has a bad ankle and Petr Cech’s hamstring will be assessed on Monday.
For Leicester, Demarai Gray (ankle) could be available for Monday night while Matty James is closing in on a first-team return after an achilles issue.
Both teams know where the back of the net is. Neither defence knows how to protect their own respective nets, goals are the order of the day.
Arsenal to win and over 2.5 goals is the strongest bet at 10/11
Arsenal to win and both teams to score is another I like at a bigger price of 13/8