arsenal vs nottingham forest 12 08 2023 sport preview

Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest – 12/08/2023 Football Tips

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Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest tips: Gunners can kick off title bid with Emirates victory

Arsenal welcome Nottingham Forest to the Emirates Stadium in what should be a lively Premier League affair.

Date, KO time and TV coverage

Premier League, Saturday, August 12, Kick-off 12:30pm BST, live on TNT Sports 1

Predicted score

Arsenal 3-2 Nottingham Forest

Team news

A knee injury will keep Gabriel Jesus out of action for Arsenal’s first game while Oleksandr Zinchenko continues to struggle with a calf problem. Just those two absentees alone could limit the team tactically. 

The injury list at Nottingham Forest is longer with Albert Sambi Lokonga, Reiss Nelson and Jorginho face a race against time.

Omar Richards, Felipe, Wayne Hennessey and Moussa Niakhate are also unavailable for Steve Cooper, though target man Taiwo Awoniyi could play a part.

Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest Verdict

Arsenal kick off their latest title challenge with a home clash against Nottingham Forest. 

While the Gunners are clear favourites on paper, the match will not be that straightforward for Mikel Arteta and his men. 

Arsenal were less than convincing during pre-season, whatever that’s worth, and have a habit of making a slow start to the season.

Then again, Nottingham struggled away from home in the early stages of last season before eventually finding their stride away from the comforts of the City Ground. 

Saturday’s match is essentially a free hit for Forest, while the expectations on Arsenal are sky high ahead of a potential title bid. 

The Gunners have started the last four seasons on their travels but it’s their first home match that seems to present as a major stumbling block.

Since the 2012/13 season, Arsenal have endured defeats to Aston Villa, West Ham, Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea. 

In addition, four goals in the final five minutes of games have spared their blushes against the likes of Burnley, Leicester and West Ham United.

Their history on opening day, and the more dramatic victories at home last season, paint the picture of a team that doesn’t do it the easy way.

To make matters worse for Arteta, the Spaniard will be without the services of Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko. 

Nottingham Forest’s only away win of the 2022/23 season came against relegated Southampton, 1-0, so it’s still a stretch to suggest an upset here.

It does however stand to reason that if a recently promoted team are going to catch a title contender cold, it’s likely to be early on in the season and with key players missing.

Much of the visitor’s struggles can be attributed to their gargantuan squad and Cooper trying to find the right formula and balance.

Morgan Gibbs-White, Brennan Johnson and Taiwo Awoniyi certainly gave the side a platform to threaten on the break as the season went on. 

There’s no reason they can’t carry that newfound stability into the new season and it’s worth noting they have opened the scoring in eight of their last 13 in 2023.

Last term, Arsenal averaged 2.80 goals per game at home, but they also managed to fall behind in 37% of their Premier League matches.

It’s never easy to predict when a shock of this size could happen, and as likely as the Gunners are to win, we want to be realistic about the visitor’s chances of making things awkward.

Cooper’s men will be expected to strike on the break and play their part in a high-scoring game. Over 3.5 goals and both teams to score look like worthwhile bets.

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