Draws for Manchester City, Tottenham and Arsenal and a comprehensive 4-0 win for Chelsea against Manchester United at Stamford Bridge last weekend left the top five in the Premier League separated by just a single point. However, Arsenal can steal a march on their rivals and return to the top of the table, at least temporarily, when they play Sunderland at the Stadium of Light in the early kick-off on Saturday.
The Black Cats have made their worst ever start to a Premier League season, with just six goals and two points from nine games since David Moyes took over from Sam Allardyce in the summer. Jermain Defoe has scored four of those six goals, but the 34-year-old was largely anonymous during the 1-0 defeat by West Ham at the London Stadium last Saturday, touching the ball just once inside the opposition penalty area.
Despite enjoying 75% possession against Middlesbrough at the Emirates Stadium last Saturday, Arsenal lacked conviction in front of goal and the 0-0 draw was the sixth time in seven Premier League meetings that they’d failed to beat the Teesiders. Nevertheless, the Gooners are unbeaten in the Premier League since a 4-3 defeat by Liverpool at the Emirates Stadium on the opening day of the season and have scored 19 goals in total, while conceding just nine. It’s frankly difficult to hold out much hope for rock-bottom Sunderland, so let’s try Arsenal -1 in the handicap betting market at 21/20 with Coral or Stan James.
Selection: Arsenal -1 (21/20 with Coral or Stan James)