BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson has given his prediction on the sort of battle that Arsenal will face when they make their trip to Crystal Palace in the Premier League this weekend.
Arsenal’s last away fixture in the Premier League saw them settle for a draw away at Bournemouth in what was Mikel Arteta’s first game in charge of the team, after being chosen as the permanent replacement for Unai Emery in December.
The new Arsenal boss then watched his side lose in agonizing fashion to Chelsea at home, despite leading for much of the game.
The Gunners have enjoyed better luck ever since the loss to the Blues though, having defeated Manchester United and Leeds in the league and FA Cup respectively.
Arteta will now be hoping to lead the team to their first win on the road under his management, after receiving all of the plaudits for adding a refreshing sense of passion and dedication to the side.
Ahead of the trip to Selhurst Park, BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson is expecting the Gunners to face a more physical battle than they have in recent games, even though he has tipped them to win 2-0.
“I was very impressed by the way Leeds started against Arsenal in their FA Cup tie on Monday but the Gunners did well in the second half and ended up getting a good win.” Lawrenson said in his BBC program
“Mikel Arteta’s side also beat Manchester United on New Year’s Day, and are looking to put a little run of wins together. Although they clearly still have some issues at the back, I have a feeling they might just kick on.
“These two teams have had some real ding-dong battles in recent seasons so this will be a good yardstick to measure Arsenal’s progress under Arteta.
“It is this type of fixture which shows how competitive you are. I don’t mean playing well and winning, I am talking about how you react when you have to battle a bit.
“Palace will compete in every area of the pitch and, if Arsenal are going to win again, they will have to earn it.
“Lawro’s prediction: 0-2”