After the high of getting to the Europa League semi-final, Arsenal must lock back in and keep their league campaign on track, so they can be sure they’re not in the competition next season. Their win against Watford on Monday was crucial in their run for the Champions League, but they can’t afford to drop any points at home. Dropping points against Crystal Palace would undo a lot of the work they did at Vicarage Road.
Palace’s win against Newcastle two weeks ago all but clinched safety for the Eagles. With safety nearly assured, Palace don’t have a whole lot to play for now. A win at the Emirates would be an incredible achievement and give Roy Hodgson’s side some encouragement going into next season, so they can play for that.
The Gunners Will be without Hector Bellerin, Danny Welbeck and Rob Holding through long term injuries, Aaron Ramsey with a hamstring injury and possibly Granit Xhaka and Dennis Suarez as they face late fitness tests. They’ll also be without Sokratis Papastathopoulos through yellow card accumulation suspension.
Palace will be without James Tompkins, Jeffrey Schlupp and Mamadou Sahko through long term injuries.
Arsenal: Mesut Ozil
With the injury to Ramsey, Arsenal will need Ozil to step up for the rest of the season. His ball progression and creativity will be even more important than usual. He can get into good form against Palace and should be able to cut through their defence, creating chances for the likes of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.
Crystal Palace: Wilfried Zaha
Zaha provides much of Palace’s creativity in attack through his dribbling. Arsenal’s weakness at fullback gives him an opportunity to rip Arsenal defence to shreds and cause an upset. It’s unlikely, but, if anyone in the team can make it happen, it’s Zaha.
Arsenal are incredible at home and Palace don’t have a whole lot to play for, so the Gunners should have a relatively easy win here.
Prediction: 3-1 Arsenal