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Both of these sides are in desperate need of a morale-boosting win and we’ll be backing the Gunners to do just that, however they will be eager to avoid the drama that their last visit to this ground threw up just twelve months ago.
Arsenal found themselves 3-0 down with a mere twenty minutes left on the clock in their last trip to Dean Court, however they managed a point thanks to an excellent fight-back with goals coming from Olivier Giroud, Alexis Sanchez and Lucas Perez. Indeed Arsene Wenger will be looking for an immediate response to the Gunners’ hugely disappointing 4-2 defeat at Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup last weekend and goal-less draw with Chelsea in the midweek EFL Cup semi-final first-leg.
The Gunners have only managed a single win in six outings and under normal circumstances we’d be hard pressed to back them to take anything from this weekend’s trip to the south coast, however the recent form of AFC Bournemouth makes things easier for us in that regard.
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The Cherries have been slow off the mark in each of their three Premier League campaigns thus far, however while they showed some improvement in October and November, performances have subsequently taken a downward turn and they head into this match having won just one of their last twelve competitive games. They only just managed a last-gasp equaliser against League One side Wigan in the weekend FA Cup clash after going 2-0 down at one stage and one can’t help but feel that a battle against relegation is on the cards for Eddie Howe’s men this season.
Bournemouth have been conceding goals with reckless abandon with not a single clean sheet in eleven matches and Arsenal should in theory have a field-day against such a leaky home rearguard on Sunday afternoon. Nevertheless while the Gunners are far better at banging in goals than keeping them out and while the visitors should run out relatively comfortable winners, the hosts will play their part by grabbing a consolation goal at some point.
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