Arsenal vs Vitoria GuimaraesUEFA Europa League, KO: 20:00 Oct 24, 2019, Emirates Stadium
ARSENAL'S revival came shuddering to a halt in Sheffield on Monday but there's little time to wallow in pity as Vitoria Guimaraes come calling on Europa League duty.
I fancied the Gunners to edge a tight game against a Sheffield United side that had failed to find the net in their last three games. But instead it was Unai Emery's men who drew a blank as Lys Mousset grabbed the only goal to end Arsenal's eight-game unbeaten run in all competitions.
Set-piece frailty cost the Gunners again and they have now conceded 22 times from dead-ball situations in the Premier League since Emery replaced Arsene Wenger at the helm.
While Arsenal have been maddeningly inconsistent in the league under the Spaniard, they have been mightily impressive in the Europa League, reaching last season's final before losing to Chelsea in Baku.
Emery has used the European games to give fringe players a run-out and bring key men back into the side after long-term injuries.
Full-backs Kieran Tierney and Hector Bellerin stepped up their comebacks by starring against Standard Liege last time and both should start again here after missing out in Sheffield.
But it was young Brazilian forward Gabriel Martinelli who dazzled the brightest against the Belgians, grabbing a double in an impressive display. That was a profitable night for me as I tipped Martinelli to score in a game with over 3.5 goals and I'm tempted to place the same bets again.
Unfortunately, the bookies have the wonderkid at a lower price for this one and he's a best 13/8 with Unibet to score at anytime. Over 3.5 goals is 29/20 with Betfair this time but I'm a bit wary of backing that as Guimaraes' two group games have only seen a total of three goals.
That suggests they will try to sit in at the Emirates and frustrate Emery's side, a tactic that worked superbly for Sheffield United on Monday night.
If the Gunners fail to get an early goal it could be a long night so under 3.5 goals could be the shout here, although the odds are poor at a best 13/20 with Marathonbet.
With Arsenal yet to concede in the group and Vitoria Guimaraes still waiting on their first goal, the stats point to a Gunners win with a clean sheet which is 11/10 with BetVictor.
Former Celtic star Tierney set up Martinelli's opener in the last Euro game and delivered some terrific crosses from the left. That makes him good value for an assist here, although the bookies have yet to price that up. I'll keep my eyes peeled and request some prices.
Bet365 do have a book open on cards and I like the look of Edmond Tapsoba at 3/1. The Guimaraes defender has picked up one red and two yellows so far this season and seems a little overpriced for a card here.
This UEFA Europa League match between Arsenal and Vitoria Guimaraes will be played on Oct 24, 2019 and kick off at 20:00