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Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest: Preview, Odds and Betting Tips - 12/08/2023 (Premier League)

Arsenal will be kicking off their 2023/24 season against Nottingham Forest who, in April 2023, beat the odds to earn a second straight Premier League season. 

The Gunners, on the other hand, are still licking their wounds from being unable to capture the Premier League title after a run that saw them hold on to the lead for more than 90 percent of the season. 

That statistic, when revealed, was shown to be the best record in a Premier League title challenge. Not even Manchester City, who have won the league with as high as 98 points, were able to hold on to the top for as long as Arsenal did last season. 

The outcome was a proper reflection of the team that Arsenal has become in recent years. It was also a reflection of the team that they could become. 

Nottingham Forest is the first team in their way this time as they work to prove that the 2022/23 season was not a fluke. 

While the match will be all about Arteta and his shiny new toys – Declan Rice, Jurrien Timber, Kai Havertz among others – Cooper will be hoping to go under the radar and secure a big win at the Emirates. For fuel, he will turn to their humiliation at the Emirates last season. They won the return leg in May but the five-nil thrashing at the Emirates will not be forgotten in a hurry. 

Both teams have prepared adequately for the new season. A look at both teams' form guides will help in making as accurate a prediction as possible.

All odds are via William Hill and all info valid as at the time of writing .

Odds could differ now.

Form Guide: Arsenal

Judging a team by their pre-season form can sometimes turn out to be a shot in the foot. 

Arsenal beat the MLS All-Stars and Barcelona in their pre-season games but needed the new time rules to be able to equalize against Manchester City in the Community Shield on 6 August. 

Against Nottingham Forest, however, they are unlikely to fight for that long for a result. Still, their most recent memory of the Tricky Trees will be their loss in May 2023 which also contributed to them losing the league title to Manchester City. 

The Community Shield win will be a spur for the North London side and they will be looking forward to starting the season as strongly as they did last time around. The odds are in Arsenal's favour but unlike last time, they are likely to concede against their visitors. 

This can be inferred from their last six games, they never kept a single clean sheet. They won four of those games but only two of those games were won in regulation time (no penalties). 

Again, you can choose to pay no mind to this statistic because the results are from pre-season matches.

Form Guide: Nottingham Forest

The curtain raiser of the 2023/24 season for Nottingham Forest is a game that they hoped would come later in the season. 

Nottingham Forest have not beaten Arsenal at home since 1989, That is 34 years of losses at Highbury and then Emirates every time they have met. It is unlikely that things will change on 12 August 2023 and the fans of the one-time European champions will hope that their poor form from pre-season will not continue against their hosts. 

As stated before, taking pre-season games as yardsticks for a team’s eventual performance in a league season can be likened to shooting oneself in the foot, especially for bettors. However, it is hard to ignore four losses from six games, especially when one of those losses is to Leeds United, who got relegated from the Premier League at their expense. 

The odds are greatly in Arsenal’s favour in this matchup. Steve Cooper will be ready for the new season, however, because Forest have a point to prove to those who believe their presence in the 2023/24 Premier League roster is a fluke. 

What to expect from the match

The inference from their form guides shows that this is most likely going to be a one-sided match. 34 years of history will take some effort to change. Going by how the Tricky Trees have played in the last few weeks, they still have more work to do. Arsenal will dominate all the stats including possession, shots, chances, passes and even fouls. Arsenal also showed improvement in their transition times during pre-season which shows that Mikel Arteta has been working. The results of their training are going to become apparent which will lead to Forest being put to the sword.

Betting predictions

Both teams to score

Arsenal have kept only one clean sheet in pre-season and in the Community Shield. 

Nottingham Forest, on the other hand, have only kept one clean sheet in all this time. However, they have a psychological upper hand over Arsenal which makes this game one of those in which both teams will score.

William Hill is offering 1.85 odds for this to happen.

Arsenal to score first

Early goals have become a staple of Mikel Arteta’s team – when they are not facing Manchester City, of course. This is not going to change any time soon, especially against an opponent like Nottingham Forest. The home-ground advantage will also come into play for the Gunners. It will be their first appearance since claiming the first title of the season and the supercharged atmosphere will spur them on to victory.

William Hill is offering 1.30 odds for the Gunners to find the net first.

Over 3.5 goals

The last iteration of this game at the Emirates ended in a 5-0 win for Arsenal. There is little to suggest that the total goals in the game will be less than this. 

Arsenal have a striker problem (Gabriel Jesus’ injury) at the moment but against Nottingham Forest, it will not pose a threat to their goalscoring chances. 

The Brazilian could also return before the game and feature in it, which will add to their goal threat.

A decent 1.70 odds is on the cards by William Hill for at least four goals to be scored in this fixture.


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