With Liverpool’s season on the very definition of life support, and Arsenal’s Premier League title hunt coming into the home stretch, there’s everything to play for at Anfield this Easter Sunday. Let’s take a look at the odds and make some picks for this big-six clash.
Liverpool vs. Arsenal Odds
Vegas sees this game as essentially even, with Liverpool set at +170, Arsenal +150, and the draw +265. For a goalscoring line of 2.5, the over is -155, and the under is +125.
Liverpool vs. Arsenal Prediction & Pick
With 9 games left to go, Arsenal sit atop the Premier League, five points ahead of second-place Manchester City; their title hopes are becoming incredibly real. This weekend, they’re facing one of their biggest remaining hurdles, a visit to Anfield.
Liverpool are unquestionably down, but a visit to their home is always a challenge for the Gunners, especially in the Premier League. Arsenal have not picked up a league win at Anfield since 2012, so breaking that streak could go a long way towards securing a long-awaited League title.
After a hiccup in February, Arsenal are back in the swing of things as they’ve won their past 7 matches in the league. Conversely, they’ve been knocked out of each of the League Cup, FA Cup, and Europa League, so the Prem is their only remaining priority.
Liverpool are also out of every knockout competition, but it’s more than fair to wonder what’s left to accomplish domestically at this point. When Arsenal picks up two more points, the Reds will be mathematically eliminated from winning the league, a conclusion that has been very much foregone for weeks now, if not months. Even securing European football is looking unlikely, as the Scousers are 13 points away from UCL qualification, with a game in hand, and 10 from making the Europa league, with two extra games to play.
It’s tough to look away from the value of Arsenal, definitively England’s best side this year, in plus-money against a team that genuinely cannot buy a win, and has scored literally one goal in the three Prem matches following their historic 7-0 slamming of Manchester United. That being said; all of those matches were on the road, where Liverpool have been positively dreadful all season.
They’ve been a different side at Anfield, and let’s not forget; we’re talking about Arsenal of all clubs trying to chase down a major trophy. I’m taking the draw, as well as the over; I think the pairing of play styles could lead to a wide-open match where we’re treated to some excellent attacking play.
Picks: Draw (+265), o2.5 goals (-155)
With the clash between Liverpool’s sorry group and Arsenal’s dynamic trio, the midfield battle is a total non-contest, let’s take a look at how the matchups might play out in each attacking third of the pitch.
Liverpool Attack vs. Arsenal Defense
At its best, Liverpool’s attack is World-class. It sounds like a stretch for a team that is struggling to stay in the top half, but unlike in recent years, there’s no consistency to their play. The trio of Mo Salah, Darwin Nunez, and whoever else starts is full of pace, creativity, and other than Nunez, finishing ability.
The questions are who will the third starter be- Salah came off the bench against Chelsea, a decision that backfired tremendously, so I’m assuming he’ll be back in the lineup. In that match, Nunez was joined by Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino, either of whom can play in the middle and could start against Arsenal, with Luis Diaz still unavailable.
The Gunners’ back four has been strong all season, as their total of 27 goals allowed is tied for the second-best mark in the league. William Saliba has been a breakout star, but has spent some time on the shelf with a back injury. It looks like he could be available for this match but if things don’t play out that way, it’ll be Englishman Rob Holding, who has put in some great shifts these past couple of weeks.
The rest of the group will be what it has been all year; another rising star in Brazil’s Gabriel, and the consistently strong fullback duo of Ben White and Oleksandr Zinchenko. Regardless of who joins Gabriel in the middle, breaking down this group will be a real challenge for Liverpool’s forwards.
Arsenal Attack vs. Liverpool Defense
Arsenal have not only a trio of players in double-figures for league goals already, but they’re also returning one of the key players from their early season success, Gabriel Jesus, who had missed some time with injury. The Brazilian is back in the goals, as he bagged a brace in the recent match against Leeds.
The group of three players lighting up the scoresheet includes two forwards: Gabriel Martinelli, the team leader with 13 league goals, and Bukayo Saka, who also has double-digit assists. Those two are joined by Martin Odegaard, who plays in an attacking midfield role, making his production all the more impressive. None of these players are truly terrifying scoring threats, but they all share an even role, making it tough to stop all of Arsenal’s top options at once.
Liverpool’s defense is pretty much the same group that was once unanimously considered the best in Europe, but not everyone is really playing as well as they did back in those days. Trent Alexander-Arnold still passes the ball well but has done his best impression of a traffic cone in some of the biggest moments, but it’s worth noting that his fullback partner Andy Robertson has still been quality.
Virgil van Dijk has not been the same after the wear and tear of a major injury dealt by absolute bully Jordan Pickford, and then last year’s incredibly rigorous fixture schedule not giving him much time to ease back into things. He didn’t play against Chelsea, but it was just illness; he’s expected to be back. He’d be joining Ibrahima Konaté, who has arguably been the team’s best defender when healthy this season, forming what could be a sturdy combo if they’re both playing up to their ability.