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EPL Preview: QPR v Arsenal, Giroud looking to continue scoring form

QPR is a welcome distraction from next Monday’s FA Cup match and hopefully another chance to boost Arsenal's confidence ahead of what is increasingly looking like a tricky away fixture.

Giroud

The victory against Everton wasn’t as visually comfortable as many would have liked, but anxiety can play tricks on you. Where time allows I try to watch a game back in its entirety and free from nerves as I already know the result it is easier for me to see what went wrong and what went right.

If you get the time I implore you to watch the Everton match again and not only will you have a newly found appreciation for Özil (if you didn’t already) you’ll also see that Arsenal were in control for most of the match and the result was a matter of patience.

At the moment, during the match, it may look like Arsenal are under the cosh at times and struggling to pick up wins but when emotion is taken out of it Arsenal haven’t been as poor as some would suggest and overall their form is good.

Mesut Özil is racking up the assists, Giroud is scoring a plenty, Arsenal are defending well (Monaco aside), they are doing more with their chances than previously and statistically they are performing above the level we see during the 90 minutes. 

Gabriel impressed against Everton bar a few heart in mouth moments but overall I have enjoyed his movement and the way he attacks the ball. I have been impressed by how he isn’t drawn to the ball all the time and quickly drops back into his ‘area’.

His recovery pace is good and his reading of the game looks solid too. Language is still a barrier, you can see that on the pitch, but when it comes we will have a real player on our hands.

QPR is a welcome distraction from next Monday’s FA Cup match and hopefully another chance to boost our confidence ahead of what is increasingly looking like a tricky away fixture. We haven’t won there in over 8 years but worse than that United seem to be getting some of their old luck back.

Predicted Lineup for Arsenal

Ospina, Chambers, Gabriel, Koscielny, Monreal, Flamini, Özil, Cazorla, Welbeck, Chamberlain, Giroud

I expect to see substitute appearances from Rosicky, Bellerin and Walcott.

Match Quote

“We know that we can do better with the ball, but we were focused on just winning the game and I like that aspect of the team as well”  – Arsène Wenger

Last 3 meetings

  • Arsenal 2-1 QPR (26.12.2014)
  • QPR 0-1 Arsenal (04.05.2013)
  • Arsenal 1-0 QPR (27.10.2012)

Form Guide

Arsenal Last 5: WLWWW

QPR Last 5: LWLLL

Opposition Watch

By virtue of goals scored, QPR have edged Burnley into the relegation zone on goal difference. It’s hard to say much about QPR because under Chris Ramsey they have been and will be a relatively different beast than they were under ‘Arry. Chris Ramsey has a 50% win record at QPR and only Tim Sherwood has done better..

Charlie Austin is the danger man for QPR and Arsenal will have to be wary of an upset. QPR have a game in hand on their rivals and they’ll want to make it count.

Earlier in the season QPR’s home form looked key to keeping them up but they’ve only racked up 2 points from their last 4 games at Loftus Road.

Factfile

  • Arsenal have won three of their last five games against QPR 1-0
  • Mesut Özil has 3 goals and 4 assists in his last 8 games
  • Alexis hasn’t scored in 6 matches
  • Giroud has scored 9 goals in 13 matches

Prediction

2-0 to Arsenal with Welbeck and Giroud on the scoresheet.

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