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Arsene Wenger described his team’s recent 5-1 defeat at Anfield as an “accident” and it will be interesting to see how he describes a reverse on Sunday should his team falter against the same opponents at the Emirates.
Arsenal are not in great nick coming into this match, failing to create many meaningful chances during Wednesday’s goalless draw against Manchester United, with Wenger admitting that his team produced a nervous performance against a side who were seemingly there for the taking.
Boylesports free bet offer 8/5 about a home win on Sunday and you might even get bigger odds as we approach kick-off, with Arsenal having a Champions League match against Bayern on Wednesday which could see several first-team players rested for this FA Cup encounter.
Olivier Giroud and Mesut Ozil could be among those players that take their place on the bench, while Jack Wilshere might also be rested as Wenger looks to keep his stars fresh for a clash against the champions of Germany and Europe.
Arsenal were comfortable 4-0 victors in the previous round against Coventry City and Lukas Podolski was the scorer of two goals in that match, with the German available at 8/1 to score the first of this encounter, while Nicklas Bendtner should also start and he’s the same price to break the deadlock.
However, it could be worth backing Liverpool nice and early for this encounter, with Stan James currently going 15/8 about the visitors and we can be pretty sure that Brendan Rodgers will name his best team for the visit to the Emirates.
Pool don’t have any European distractions to worry about and won’t play again for another week which means Daniel Sturridge will get a chance to score for the ninth match running, having helped his team beat Fulham 3-2 on Wednesday after finding the net before being brought down for a late Steven Gerrard penalty.
Sturridge is blossoming nicely at Anfield this term and can’t be overlooked at odds of 6/1 to score the first goal, while Luis Suarez is a 5/1 chance and will be looking to find the net for the first time in four games.
The only slight concern for Liverpool is in defence where Kolo Toure is making a habit of committing poor errors, although the central defender should be motivated against his former club and we shouldn’t forget he was part of a team that trounced Arsenal 5-1 recently.
While Wenger is aware of the supporters’ desire for silverware this term, he will surely be prepared to sacrifice the FA Cup in order to give the team the best possible chance of beating Bayern Munich next week and it could play into the hands of Liverpool.
A 2-0 win for the visitors can be backed with a degree of confidence at odds of 17/1, while a 2-1 victory for Liverpool is a 19/2 chance and should also be covered.
PREDICTION: Arsenal 1 Liverpool 2