TEAM NEWSWatford winger Andre Carrillo could be involved, despite playing in Peru’s World Cup qualifier against Colombia on Wednesday night.Isaac Success faces up to eight weeks out with a knee injury, while Sebastian Prodl (thigh) remains a doubt.Arsenal will assess Alexis Sanchez, who only arrived back in London on Thursday after World Cup duty with Chile.
Laurent Koscielny and Sead Kolasinac will have fitness tests, and Shkodran Mustafi is out with a thigh strain. However, Mesut Ozil and Danny Welbeck are available, having overcome knee and groin injuries respectively.MOTD COMMENTATOR’S NOTESJonathan Pearce: “How much have the World Cup qualifiers cost Arsenal? Alexis Sanchez travelled 15,000 miles with Chile only to be KO’d. He will be mentally and physically exhausted just when Arsenal need him to avoid their worst scoring start to an away campaign in 81 years.”Shkodran Mustafi was injured with Germany, leaving them horribly bare at the back. Sead Kolasinac had a nightmare with Bosnia.”On the other hand, Olivier Giroud scored and qualified with France. His height in both boxes could be crucial against a Watford side who are enjoying their best Premier League start but look fragile at home, where they haven’t won. “In comparison, few of their players have been away. That could be significant in a game Arsenal must win.”WHAT THE MANAGERS SAYWatford head coach Marco Silva: “After their defeat against Liverpool, Arsenal have responded in a very good way.”The last seven games they have won six and only drawn once, against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, and they were really close to winning that game.”They look like a more balanced team and with the ball they have a lot of quality. So, for us, it will be a tough game but that is what we expect against a good team.”Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on Watford: “They are a strong side. They have strong results, they’re a balanced team who are dangerous and play good football. They’re tough opponents for everybody.”He [Marco Silva] has impressed, because I think Watford play good football. He was at Hull, where he had a very good start as well, and overall I think he has done very well.”LAWRO’S PREDICTIONWatford have been one of the surprise packages of the season so far, but they are actually yet to win at home under Marco Silva and I don’t see that changing on Saturday.Prediction: 0-2Lawro’s full predictions v rapper Wretch 32Think you can do better than Lawro? Predict the score for this match and the rest of this round’s Premier League fixtures in our Predictor gameMATCH FACTSHead-to-headWatford earned their first league victory against Arsenal since April 1988 in the most recent meeting, at the Emirates Stadium in January. It ended their run of seven straight defeats in this fixture.The Hornets have failed to keep a clean sheet against Arsenal in 10 matches since that 1-0 away victory in 1988.Arsenal have won five successive matches away to Watford in all competitions, scoring 15 goals. WatfordWatford’s tally of 12 points from seven games is their best start to a Premier League season, and the club’s second highest total at this stage of a top-flight campaign. They had 15 points under Graham Taylor in 1982-83.However, they have only taken two points from their past five games at Vicarage Road. A sixth successive top-flight home match without a win would represent Watford’s worst run since October 1984.Richarlison has scored in the 90th minute in successive Premier League games – without those goals, Watford would be three points worse off.Troy Deeney has gone 13 league games without a goal, his longest drought for six years.Marco Silva won his first managerial meeting with Arsene Wenger, when Olympiacos were 3-2 victors at the Emirates Stadium in the 2015-16 Champions League group stage. However, Arsenal won the reverse fixture 3-0 and beat Silva’s Hull City 2-0 away in the Premier League last season.ArsenalThe Gunners could fail to score in their opening four away league games of a season for the first time since 1936. They last went four consecutive away league games without a goal during the same season in December 1992.Arsenal are vying to keep five successive Premier League clean sheets for the first time since January 2006.Petr Cech has not enjoyed a longer run of top-flight shut-outs since going six games without conceding between April and August 2010.Alexis Sanchez has provided three goals and three assists in his four Premier League games against Watford. However, Sanchez has failed to score in five league appearances for the first time since an 11-match barren spell between October 2015 and March 2016.SAM’s verdictMost probable score: 0-1Probability of draw: 22%Probability of home win: 17%Probability of away win: 61%SAM (Sports Analytics Machine) is a super-computer created by @ProfIanMcHale at the University of Liverpool that is used to predict the outcome of football matches.
Source: BBC Bucks