Can Arsenal and Arsene Wenger bounce back in the Premier League?

There will have been mixed feelings towards the end of the 2016/17 campaign for Arsenal, with the joy of lifting the FA Cup, slightly overshadowed by the club’s failure to qualify for next season’s Champions League. After agreeing a new two-year deal at the Emirates Stadium, Arsene Wenger will find himself under pressure in his 22nd season with the Gunners, with a return to the top four an absolute must for the North Londoners.

It is not only a return to the top four that Arsenal fans want to see; they want to see their club competing for the Premier League title, which has eluded them since 2004. Last season, the Gunners were way off the pace, finishing the campaign fifth and 18 points behind eventual champions, Chelsea.

Arsène Wenger” (CC BY 2.0) by Ronnie Macdonald

Wenger’s side are 12/1 to lift the Premier League trophy for the first time in over a decade next season, but punters can take the edge off an unlikely wager with a range of free bets, such as a £20 welcome bonus. Arsenal’s supporters will be hoping that the recent signing of Alexandre Lacazette solves the striking issues at the club, with the Gunners struggling to properly replace Robin van Persie, who left the club back in 2012.

If Wenger’s latest French striker can reproduce his 2016/17 form in the Premier League, Arsenal will be set for an improvement next term. Lacazette scored 36 goals from just 44 appearances across all competitions for Lyon last season, helping the French outfit finish fourth in Ligue 1. The addition of the 26-year-old could prove crucial in Wenger’s bid to keep Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil at the Emirates, as the signing of the French international is a show of real ambition from Arsenal’s long-serving manager.

Sanchez will again be key for Arsenal next season, and if Wenger has any chance of bringing the glory days back to North London, the Chilean international will be vital. The Gunners will need the forward to rediscover his stunning 2016/17 form and be the talisman at the Emirates Stadium next year.

The rest of the transfer window will also be key for Wenger and Arsenal, with many hoping that the Gunners add steel to the spine of their team, which has proved to be their Achilles heel on so many occasions in recent years.

There is no doubting that the next 12 months are the most important in Wenger’s time with Arsenal, as they could potentially define his time in North London. However, the Frenchman has made all the right noises so far this summer, and the addition of Lacazette should see the Gunners once again compete for a place in the top four.

If Wenger can keep the likes of Sanchez and Ozil in North London, and continue to add players to his squad, there is every chance that Arsenal will be more than a match for some of the division’s frontrunners. The Manchester clubs are once again tipped to set the pace in the Premier League, but the Gunners will be entering the campaign determined to right the wrongs of last season. 

Is Lacazette an improvement on what Arsenal already have?

Make no mistake about it, Alexandre Lacazette would be a marquee signing for any top European side and the fact that Arsenal have managed to acquire his signature without the lure of Champions League football represents a real coup for the club.

The forward recently signed a five-year deal with the North London giants for an initial fee, which is believed to be about £46.5 million but could rise to £52 million in potential bonuses. Arsene Wenger has made no secret of his desire to sign Lacazette and the Gunners have been repeatedly linked with the French striker for the last few seasons.

It wouldn’t be much of a stretch to label the 26-year-old as prolific – he scored an impressive 100 goals in 203 appearances for Lyon and has managed more than 20 goals in Ligue 1 for the last three consecutive seasons. Wenger has finally got the player he wants but the question remains, is Lacazette the player Arsenal really need?

Source: The Independent

With Olivier Giroud arguably Arsenal’s number one out and out striker, much has been made about the future of the big Frenchman and how/if he will fit into the Arsenal team due to Lacazette’s arrival. Whilst Lacazette obviously guarantees goals, Giroud’s scoring record is not to be scoffed at and the former Montpellier man has netted 69 goals in 164 appearances in the four seasons he’s spent at the club.

More importantly, Giroud, at 6’4, is more effective in holding the play up and is far more potent in the air than the 5’9 Lacazette. In his time at Arsenal, Giroud has won 4.4 aerial duels per 90 minutes as opposed to Lacazette’s 1 at Lyon and has an aerial duel success rate of 55.5% compared to Lacazette’s fairly paltry 36.1%.

The formidable forward demonstrated his aerial prowess in the Premier League last season in games such as Bournemouth away, where the Gunners came back from 3-0 down to draw 3-3 and at Manchester United last November where he earned his team a valuable 1-1 draw against Jose Mourinho’s men with a last minute bullet header.

Source: BBC Sport

Whilst it could be argued that there’s a stat to back almost anything up nowadays, the striker situation surrounding the French national team is perhaps more telling when it comes to the merits of both players. Giroud has started the last three games for France and remains the main man up top despite Lacazette’s eye for goal, indicating that that Didier Deschamps may feel the former brings more to the team both offensively and defensively.

France are 13/2 with various international football betting websites to lift the World Cup in Russia next year and the 31st August sees them take on the Netherlands at the Stade de France in a World Cup Qualifier which France probably need to win in order to avoid a dreaded play-off fixture.

With a quick glance at the recently released Premier League fixture list, Arsenal look to have three tough games on paper before Lacazette and Giroud join up with their national team. Arsenal welcome 2015/2016 Premier League Champions Leicester to the Emirates in the first fixture of the Premier League season on the 12th August before two tough away games at Stoke and Liverpool, respectively.

Both neutral onlookers and diehard Arsenal fans alike will be watching with keen interest to see just how Arsenal line up and more importantly, how Lacazette settles into the Premier League. With recent reports linking Giroud with a move away from the Emirates, only time will tell as to whether the two French strikers will get a chance to battle for the red jersey.

Gunners Set for Testing Pre-Season Schedule

Source: Arsenal via Facebook.

For the first time in two decades, Arsenal will not be a participant in the UEFA Champions League. In staying on as Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger has endeared himself yet further in the eyes of the majority of the Emirates faithful. Conversely, he has also incensed the ever-growing faction of Arsenal fans that crave a new face in the dugout, with fresh ideas and a clear vision for the coming generations. With the teams that did qualify for next season’s Champions League set to grow ever stronger, Wenger may need to bank on a Europa League triumph, and gain qualification to the Champions League via that route.

Once more, free from the distraction of international football, Arsenal have prepared well for the upcoming season. A tour of Australia will enable Wenger’s men to bond and release their wrath upon opposition that could be considered equal to a few teams that are guaranteed to be in the Europa League group stage, but amongst the lowest seeded sides. In playing a number of reserves against A-League opposition, Wenger will know exactly how ready his rotation players are for the likes of Zorya Luhansk and FC Lugano. These are potential ‘banana skins’ that could disrupt Arsenal’s bid for Europa League success, as reflected by odds (as of 16 June 2017) of 10/1 from Paddy Power for Arsenal to win the competition outright. In winning the Europa League, Arsenal would have a first European trophy since the 1994 Cup Winners Cup.

Following on from the Australian tour is the first match of an International Champions Cup pre-season tournament. Red, white and neutral alike, every cynical follower of football culture on social media believes that Arsenal’s ICC run will end at the first hurdle, against a Bayern Munich side they are seemingly incapable of beating. Then Arsenal will face two opponents that will provide the greatest reflection yet of the Gunners’ readiness for a Europa League run – namely, Benfica and Sevilla.

Benfica will only meet Arsenal in European competition, for the first time in 27 years, if they finish third in their Champions League group and join them in the Europa League group stage. Three years ago, Arsenal used home advantage against Benfica as they will aspire to this summer, beating the current champions of Portugal 5-1 and making a real statement of intent after yet another fourth-placed finish. One player that Arsenal will ignore at their peril is Mexican striker Raul Jimenez, with the 26-year old hitting seven goals in nineteen appearances last season.

It only gets harder for Arsenal, with a Sevilla side now managed by Eduardo Berizzo visiting the Emirates a day later. It will be the first meeting between the sides in ten years, with each club winning its group stage home game against the other in the 2007/08 Champions League. In the interim, Sevilla have won three European trophies in consecutive years, while Arsenal – as already noted – have won none. Sevilla manager Berizzo will undoubtedly make life difficult for Wenger. Notably, he recently transformed Celta Vigo from a struggling side to Europa League semi-finalists in the space of just two years.

Semi-competitive though the Emirates Cup is, only lifting it will put Arsenal in the frame of mind they must occupy to make 2017/18 a success, especially with the Gunners having the fillip of home advantage.

How Sports Betting Can Benefit your Bank Account

Sports are one of the most important and globally enjoyed pastimes. In almost every single country, there is some form of sport or gaming-related activity prevalent, that the locals enjoy. Sport is so important in life that it has been the primary source of entertainment for millions of people over the years since the start of human history.

With the ancient Olympic games, to the modern worldwide competitions and even the innovative online sports of tomorrow; we have evidence of the way and the extent to which sports have made themselves integral to our lives. This has given rise to a number of opportunities to both people who want to be actively involved in the act of playing a sport, as well as those who want to benefit financially from it without actually having to participate in the game.

Sports Betting: The Significance and Involvement

It’s a well-known fact that betting is as integral a part of any major sport as the various rules that govern it and the players who compete in it. This has been so since the ancient times when in the spirit of fandom and competition, the spectators would start financially rooting on who would win.

There are various betting organisations that cater specifically to people who bet on sports, and they have a very well-set network inside the sport in question.

Take football for instance. There are many organisations and associations based in almost all major cities and even internationally, that organise the betting process for the people who are putting their money in the game. These organisations do all the record keeping while the players simply put in their money and if they are lucky, leave with sizable amounts. This makes it a very profitable business in general, and certainly one that involves a great deal of thrill, especially if you are a fan of sports and you want to benefit from it financially.

Sports Betting: A Sure-Fire Way to Increase your Bank Account Numbers

Betting on your favorite sport can be a very thrilling way to make money, especially if you thoroughly enjoy watching the sport. This is because the more you feel involved on a visual and mental level with the activity and the more passionate you are about it, the more you will enjoy benefitting from it financially. This will also increase your chances of benefiting from it, since you will know all the intricacies of the sport.

To that end, the following is a list of ways you and your bank account are sure to benefit from sports betting.

Knowledge of the sport leads to better betting results

Assuming that the sport you are betting on is something that you are very familiar with, and you know all the various indications that continue to demonstrate how the game is going to turn out; you can actually be quite successful at sports betting.

If we are to take the sport of football, there are hundreds, even thousands of people all over the world who have expertise in the game. This has led to football betting becoming a business worth an immense amount of money. There are dedicated organisations that cater to football betting, which can ultimately be your pathway towards a bigger, heftier bank account, if you keep at it with due diligence.

Less effort means more dedication

Since betting does not involve any physical exertion, unlike the actual sport which is being played, you can dedicate your entire mind to it. Betting demands that close attention be paid to the various emerging patterns and performance figures in the game. This will help in placing the right bets, which results in better payoffs. This is why it’s very advantageous for you, as an enthusiast of the sport, and someone who can put all their time and money into betting, to play the game in a way that is both comfortable and less physically taxing than the sport itself.

The payoffs can be HUGE!

If you have bet on a game before, you will undoubtedly have noticed that sometimes the payoff to the right bet can be immense, even amounting in the millions in some cases! The bigger the game and the more chances of a big upset there are, the more the payoff. Although it is a risky business in such a case, the rewards far outweigh the risks. Plus there is the thrill of putting your money where your mouth is and going all in for the one big bet that is sure to expand the boundaries of your bank account!

Jose Mourinho vs Carlo Ancelotti vs Antonio Conte


The Special One

Jose Mourinho won the English Premier League with Chelsea in the 2004/05 season. The self-proclaimed “special one” did this with a team that was complete. A team that had high calibre players including Claude Makelele and Frank Lampard in the centre. Arjen Robben and Damien Duff at the wings. And a solid back led by John Terry. It was team that would rarely concede in 90 minutes but had players who could score. By the end of the season Lampard with 13 goals was the team’s highest goal score. That season the blues only conceded 15 goals. Did you know that sports betting has expanded to non-athletic event, you can now place your betting on other things besides sport for more information visit sun vegas and get more information on sports betting.

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Arsenal Winger Tella Has Left Arsenal And Joined Southampton On A Permanent Deal


It is going to be a huge rebuilding job at the Emirates for whoever is in charge come the start of the new campaign. With the clubs key personnel including the manager along with star players Ozil and Sanchez yet to decide their future, the heart could be ripped out and need emergency surgery to fit it. One player that has just confirmed that he has left Arsenal is Tella who has joined Southampton on a permanent basis. The young winger could be one of many that leave during the summer months.

Tella has been able to join Southampton due to The Gunners telling the young winger that his contract with the club would not be extended at the end of the campaign. The player has been at Southampton on trial which he confirms early in the month. Things have gone well for him at Southampton and were keen to join them. Arsenal has not stood in the player’s way and has allowed him to leave. He has been at Emirates for a decade but has never reached his full potential due to a lack of playing time.

Tella is only 17 years old and has bags of potential to make it to the very top. If he is going to do it he needs playing time at one of the clubs in the EPL so he can develop into a top class winger. With Southampton’s policy of developing young talent, it is a great match for the midfielder and it will give him the better chance of getting regular playing time.

Tella is a player full of promise but presently he will not be missed as Arsenal have plenty of quality player that play in his position. If however both Ozil and Sanchez leave, this will completely destroy a team that is built around the two star players. Ozil is the most likely one out of the two that will stay due to his huge wages and lazy attitude that will put off a number of the top teams that can afford his salary. The bigger loss will be Sanchez and he is a player that will be extremely difficult to replace. Without him, the team will be a lot weaker which is something they cannot afford as they are already going to struggle to qualify for the Champions League next season.

A growing number of Gunner Fans want to see manager Wenger resign from his position as manager but the rumors are that he is determined to stay. If the club does not qualify for the Champions League the pressure will mount and it is hard to see him staying. Their form both in the EPL and Champions League has been dreadful since the turn of the year and if things do not change fast they are in danger of falling apart.

With so much uncertainty at the club, it will hinder their chances of qualifying for the Champions League. One wager that is worth considering is for both Arsenal and Man U to fail to qualify for next year’s competition. If you do fancy putting some money on this make sure you get a £30 free football bet with one of the top bookmakers.