Brentford might rank among the toughest of all Premier League road trips, but Arsenal possess the blueprint to claim another big win there on Saturday.
The Bees have suffered just three home losses since the start of 2022/23 and are a frightening proposition at their raucous Gtech abode, as we discovered on THAT infamous opening night two years ago.
However, Mikel Arteta has masterminded a 3-0 away victory since then and dumped Thomas Frank’s side out of the Carabao Cup in September, while our hosts’ patchy form provides hope for a similar result this weekend.
Brentford vs Arsenal: 3 key factors to help Gunners secure a priceless away win
Three points could send Arsenal back to the domestic summit, and here are the key factors that will help us secure them.
1. Bringing Martin Odegaard back into the fold
Following an uncharacteristic three-game absence, Martin Odegaard is now (finally) on course for his first-team return.
Our captain missed this fixture last year through injury and was superbly covered by Fabio Vieira. But a red card for Vieira against Burnley means Odegaard has a free run at the #8 slot here, and his skill set is ideal for unpicking the Brentford defence.
The Norwegian can draw them out via his deep positioning in the midfield pockets and boasts the technical security to emerge unscathed from their high press, even when receiving possession from the Arsenal backline.
Odegaard will also hurt Brentford’s build-up with his own aggressive press and boasts a penchant for long-range shooting, which could prove fruitful if they choose to give him space near the box (à la Vieira last season).
In any case, his assist in our February meeting shows he can produce special moments irrespective of staunch rearguard work.
His involvement may be limited due to our predominantly wide means of ball progression, but keen spatial awareness should still see Odegaard pop up in dangerous areas and make the crucial difference.
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