Arsenal take on relegation-threatened Fulham on Sunday afternoon, both sides in desperate need of the points heading into the closing stages of the campaign.
Here’s all you need to now about that clash at the Emirates:
After a dismal showing in the defeat to Liverpool just over a week ago, the Gunners bounced back in perfect fashion at the weekend, claiming a relatively comfortable 3-0 win over an albeit doomed Sheffield United side.
A brace from Alexandre Lacazette and the first goal in 15 months from Gabriel Martinelli – on a rare start for the young Brazilian – gave the away side all three points, with the result all but confirming the Blades already inevitable drop back into the second tier.
While it may not have been against the toughest opposition, Arsenal’s triumph at Bramall Lane was a marker of what they can do when at their free-flowing best, Lacazette’s first goal a typically beautiful flowing team move from Arteta’s men.
Such an impressive performance has done little, however, to really alter the Gunners league position, with them currently in ninth and ten points off West Ham in fourth, in what’s been a hugely disappointing league campaign thus far.
That being said, they still remain in with a chance of securing Champions League football next season via a Europa League triumph, as they set up a meeting with Villarreal and former boss Unai Emery in the semi-final following a superb 4-0 second-leg win over Slavia Prague.
That quarter-final clash saw Emile Smith Rowe make an excellent return the side, although both Martin Odegaard and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang were notable absentees, the latter man revealing he is set for a spell on the sidelines after contracting Malaria while on international duty.
The Cottagers have hit a sticky patch at precisely the wrong moment in the season, Fulham currently on a four-game losing streak following their agonising last-minute loss to Wolves at the weekend.
A stoppage-time Adama Traore strike gave Nuno Espirito Santo’s side a deserved victory, the visitors having been denied a Willian Jose goal by the tightest of offside calls earlier on in the game.
— Jacqui Oatley (@JacquiOatley) April 9, 2021
That result means that Scott Parker’s men are now six points behind Newcastle United in 17th, and having played a game more than the Magpies, while their last win was against Liverpool at Anfield at the start of March.
That win had looked to be a real defining moment for last season’s Championship play-off final winners, yet they’ve simply just failed to kick on since then, with another instant relegation looking more likely with each passing week, particularly with West Bromwich Albion catching fire at present.
Although both sides still look destined for the drop, Sam Allardyce’s men are at least heading into the climax of the season in impressive form, while Fulham look on course to suffer the same fate as they did two years ago.
As for the trip to the Emirates, Parker will be hoping to have Ademola Lookman available after the former Everton man sat out last Friday’s defeat.
Fulham 0-3 Arsenal, 12 September 2020
The two sides last meeting came on the opening day of the season, with Scott Parker’s newly-promoted side given a harsh reminder of the difficulties of top-flight football.
The visitors took just eight minutes to go ahead, Alexandre Lacazette tapping home after summer signing Willian’s effort had initially been saved by Marek Rodak.
The Brazilian then continued his fine debut influence by teeing up the second, the former Chelsea man’s corner finding compatriot and fellow new addition Gabriel Magalhaes who duly headed home.
Mikel Arteta’s men then rounded off a fine return to action with a third on 57 minutes, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang with an excellent strike following another Willian assist.
Arsenal: Leno; Chambers, Holding, Mari, Xhaka; Partey, Saka, Ceballos; Martinelli, Pepe, Lacazette.
Fulham: Areola; Tete, Andersen, Tosin, Aina, Robinson; Reed, Lemina; De Cordova-Reid, Loftus-Cheek, Mitrovic.
Who is the referee?
What channel is it on?
UK and Irish readers can watch the match on Sky Sports Premier League.
What time is kick off?
Sunday 18 April, 13:30 BST
Arsenal – 8/11
Fulham – 17/4
Draw – 13/5