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Arsenal vs Fulham Predictions: Gunners to survive toughest test yet
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Dan Sait
Gabriel Jesus has been a key player for Arsenal so far this season
Gabriel Jesus has been a key player for Arsenal so far this season

Both teams will be in high spirits as they line up at the Emirates Stadium, with Arsenal and Fulham each enjoying better results than many expected from their first three rounds of Premier League fixtures.

That Mikel Arteta’s table-topping Gunners have taken nine points from three games is less surprising than the results gained by Fulham, who have defied the doom-mongers to take five points from matches against Brentford, Wolves and Liverpool.

A winning run or unbeaten record must be broken on Saturday evening but while one of the two teams will have the shine taken off their early season start, current form suggests this London derby will be a keenly contested affair.

Team news

Arteta has a near-fully fit squad to choose from, with youngster Reiss Nelson the only Arsenal absentee.

While the likes of Emile Smith Rowe, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Kieran Tierney and new signing Fabio Vieira will all pushing for inclusion, Arteta is likely to stick with the same starting XI he has been able to name in all three matches this term.

Marco Silva fielded a second-string Fulham team in the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night but has made only two changes to his starting line-up during the nascent Premier League campaign. However, the Fulham manager heads to north London with problems in attack.

Harry Wilson and Manor Solomon both have knee injuries that are expected keep them out until October while replacement Neeskens Kebano had to drop out last weekend due to a groin injury and will be assessed ahead of the game this weekend.

That leaves Silva short of attacking options and it is likely that 19-year-old forward Jay Stansfield will make his second senior start after making his full debut against Brentford last weekend.

Summer signing Bernd Leno has, as expected, usurped Marek Rodak to add proven Premier League quality in goal and the German stopper will face his old club at the Emirates.

The stats

Fulham’s return of five points from three Premier League games is no less than they deserve — Liverpool may have been marginally the better side in their opening day trip to Craven Cottage but Cottagers fans will justifiably feel they deserved their 2-2 draw.

Silva’s men followed up by being the better team in a 0-0 draw at Wolves — missing a late penalty that would have clinched all three points — and just about deserved their last-gasp victory over Brentford, recording 1.9 expected goals to their visitors' 1.5.

With three goals in three games in 2022-23, Aleksandar Mitrovic has already matched his third-best Premier League tally. 

In previous top-flight seasons for Fulham, Mitrovic scored only three goals in 27 appearances in 2020-21 and 11 goals in 37 starts in 2018-19. At Newcastle he could only muster 10 top-flight goals in 40 appearances across two seasons.

History suggests the Serbia international will have to be at his best for Fulham to get anything from this match, however, as the Cottagers have never won away at Arsenal, losing 24 of 30 visits over the last 120 years and drawing the other six.

First they must survive an early salvo from the Gunners, who have taken quick leads in all three matches this term. Arteta’s men opened the scoring on 20 minutes in their opening day 2-0 win at Crystal Palace, were 2-0 up within 35 minutes of their 4-2 victory over Leicester and scored the first two of their three goals against Bournemouth inside 11 minutes.

Aleksandar Mitrovic is Fulham's main man in the final third
Aleksandar Mitrovic is Fulham's main man in the final third


While there is a suspicion that Arsenal’s impressive early season results hide a hint of defensive vulnerability, there can be no denying their quality up front.

Gabriel Jesus has slotted in perfectly since arriving from Manchester City, already providing two goals and three assists.

Behind him, captain Martin Odegaard is finishing off chances as well as creating them, new signing Oleksandr Zinchenko has slotted in seamlessly and William Saliba has been imperious in defence since returning from three seasons out on loan.

Fulham will offer the Gunners their toughest test yet, with Silva’s men likely to press harder than their previous opponents and Mitrovic a threat to any team in his current form.

However, Arsenal have the quality to overcome this tricky test and are likely to again find the breakthrough early on as Arteta pursues his fast-starting shock-and-awe approach.


Premier LeagueArsenalFulhamGabriel JesusAleksandar Mitrovic
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