Arsenal vs Slavia Prague; Gunners Value to Score 2 against Prague on Thursday

Alexandre Lacazette Arsenal 2 Tottenham Hotspur 1

Updated: 28/02/2024

2020-21 UEFA Europa League quarter-final first-leg preview: Arsenal vs Slavia Prague – The Emirates stadium, London – Thursday, 8 April 2021 – 20:00 hrs. BST

Arsenal vs Slavia Prague Preview

Mikel Arteta's Arsenal will look to find their mojo back when they host Slavia Prague at the Emirates for the first leg game of a 2020-21 Europa League quarter final tie.

The Gunners reached the Round of 8 after scraping to a 3-2 aggregate win over Greek club Olympiacos while Prague managed to overcome Rangers to reach to the same stage.

As if the 1-0 second leg home defeat to Olympiacos was not humiliating enough, the Gunners were subjected to further ignominy by a 3-0 drubbing at the hands of  Liverpool in a Premier League clash last weekend.

Jindrich Trpisovsky's side, meanwhile, who are yet to taste defeat in 2021, dropped two points in a domestic Czech League outing during the weekend as Zbrojovka Brno held them to a 0-0 draw.

Nevertheless, that goalless draw represented Slavia Prague's fourth clean sheet in a row and what will give them confidence is their ouster of Leicester City in a Round of 32 clash on English soil a month ago.

Arsenal Europa League form: WWDWWL

Arsenal form across all competitions: DWWLDL

Slavia Prague Europa League form: WLDWDW

Slavia Prague across all competitions: WDWWWD

Team news

David Luiz is ruled out with a knee surgery coming up for the Arsenal defender while Kieran Tierney could be sidelined for weeks for an injury he sustained against Liverpool. Emile Smith Rowe and Bukayo Saka who failed fitness tests against Liverpool are expected to return for starts for Thursday’s Emirates game.

Granit Xhaka remains in doubt after missing out against Liverpool through illness. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who produced one more lackluster performance during the weekend could well be dropped if one or both of Smith Rowe and Saka were to return.

For Slavia Prague, 34-year-old center-back Ondrej Kudela who has been mired in a racism row, will not feature at the Emirates as he is down with a bout of illness, although a provisional one-match ban handed to him by UEFA would have ruled him out anyway.

Prague look short of options at the back with Simon Deli and David Hovorka also ruled out.

Talented winger Abdallah Sima who already has four Europa League goals to his credit will certainly look to start on Thursday night while eighteen-year-old goalkeeper Matyas Vagner will come in place of first-choice custodian Ondrej Kolar who remains doubtful with a sinus fracture.

Arsenal probable starting XI:

Leno (goal); Bellerin, Holding, Gabriel, Cedric; Partey, Elneny; Saka, Odegaard, Pepe; Lacazette

Slavia Prague probable starting XI:

Vagner (goal); Bah, Zima, Hromada, Boril; Holes, Sevcik; Sima, Stanciu, Olayinka; Kuchta

Despite a near unbeaten run and their giant-killing abilities, Slavia Prague's depleted defense and a rookie goalkeeper will be a major handicap going into the Emirates game. Arsenal will be fully aware of such weaknesses and hence the prediction is a 2-1 first leg win for the Gunners.

Betfred odds:

Betfred odds are subject to change and were correct as of 07/04/2021.

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  • Arsenal to win: 11/20
  • Slavia Prague to win: 5/1
  • Draw: 16/5

Correct score

Football betting odds for correct scores below plus our suggested bet

  • Arsenal 1-0: 6/1
  • Arsenal 2-0: 6/1
  • Arsenal 2-1: 15/2 (predicted score line)
  • Draw 1-1: 7/1
  • Arsenal 3-0: 10/1
  • Draw 0-0: 10/1
  • Arsenal 3-1: 12/1
  • Slavia Prague 1-0: 14/1
  • Draw 2-2: 18/1
  • Slavia Prague 2-1: 16/1
  • Arsenal 4-0: 20/1
  • Arsenal 4-1: 22/1
  • Arsenal 3-2: 25/1

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