Leicester City will host Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal at the King Power stadium come Sunday in the 3rd game-week of this Premier League season. The home side, boosted by the signing of Argentine veteran Esteban Cambiasso from Inter on a free transfer will face the North London outfit that is facing a few injury problems, especially lacking options up front. Nigel Pearson’s side played their hearts out last time despite the eventual 2-0 defeat, against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge but the final scoreline could have been different had David Nugent converted a glorious chance at 0-0.
The Gunners shaded the game against a determined Besiktas side at home in midweek, thereby progressing to the group stages of the premier cup competition, with new signing Alexis Sanchez getting the winner – his first goal for the club. They will be looking to carry the momentum and keep pace with the league leaders and mount a serious title challenge this time around. After trailing 2-0 at Everton with 10 minutes to go in a game they should have won, Arsene Wenger’s men showed real resilience in earning a draw and they may need to rely on similar determination against a dogged Leicester side at the King Power Stadium.
Former Argentina international Cambiasso signed a one-year deal with the foxes on Thursday after becoming a free agent following his release from Inter Milan after a 10-year spell with the Serie A giants. Definitely ruled out of the game against the Gunners are midfielder Matthew James (shin) and defender Matthew Upson (foot), otherwise manager Nigel Pearson has a full squad to choose from. Jamie Vardy and Danny Drinkwater though remain doubtful ahead of Sunday’s encounter and should be assessed prior to kick-off.
Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey returns from suspension. Midfielder Mikel Arteta continues to be sidelined with an ankle problem and second choice goalkeeper David Ospina is close to completing his recovery from a thigh strain. Striker Olivier Giroud (tibia), full-back Kieran Gibbs (hamstring) and winger Theo Walcott (knee) are in the treatment room.
Leicester City – Schemeichel; Morgan, Moore, De Laet, Konchesky; Drinkwater, King, Knockaert, Mahrez; Ulloa, Nugent; (4-4-2)
Arsenal – Szczesny; Monreal, Mertesacker, Koscielney, Debuchy; Flamini, Wilshere, Ramsey; Cazorla, Sanchez, Ozil; (4-3-3)
- The last time Arsenal played Leicester was the 38th and final game of the unbeaten 2003-04 Premier League campaign.
- Leicester’s players to have featured so far have a combined total of 550 Premier League appearances, fewer than any other team this season.
- Mesut Ozil has assisted only one goal in his last nine Premier League games.
- The Foxes have not beaten Arsenal in the Premier League since 1994.
Leicester City – Kasper Schmeichel
‘Like father. Like Son.’ Kasper Schemeichel has been really good in the opening two games against two of the top sides in Everton and Chelsea making several important saves in the process. Despite ending up on the losing side against Chelsea, he made his presence felt by making a total of 4 saves against the Blues, that included a finger-tip save, that was very much reminiscent of his father. Though having conceded an average of 2 goals per game in the league so far, Kasper has managed to make 2.5 saves per game and 1.25 saves per goal. With a 50% punching success rate in the two games, Kasper will need to be at his best to thwart a strong Arsenal attack spearheaded by the Chilean to ensure Leicester get their first victory in the league and against Arsenal (in the Premier League) since 1994.
Arsenal – Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey has managed to carry on his rich vein of form he was in last season into the new season and has already scored 2 goals in his opening two games. He’s evolved from being a squad player to Arsenal’s go-to man in the space of 15 months and is now being touted as one of the key players that could guide Arsenal to their first Premier League provided he manages to stay fit throughout the season. With 6 turnovers in the first two games and 7 shots attempted already he sure has been a live wire and will be no different in his next game against the Foxes. Back from a suspension that kept him out of the Champions League qualifier, he should be fresh and fit to orchestrate the Gunners’ attack from the middle come Sunday.
There are certain things in football that are inevitable. Ronaldo skinning a full-back. Torres missing an open net. And well, Flamini getting a booking.You can back Arsenal’s Flamini to receive a card vs Leicester @ 3.5 with Tailorbet here http://goo.gl/jbzCf4.
Arsenal will go into the game without a proper center forward leading the line as Olivier Giroud is out with a knee injury. After securing their berth among Europe’s elite, the gunners will now look to keep things ticking in the league and stay as close to the league leaders as possible. Leicester City on the other hand, should be feeling the heat of the Premier League and certainly not helped by the opening round of fixtures but the Foxes have shown their willingness to compete at this level in the opening two games and will be looking to pull of a historic home win and kick on from there. Though I think, Arsenal on Sunday, will have too much in their arsenal.
Leicester City 1 – 3 Arsenal