A trip to Newcastle for any Premier League team usually presents the prospect of three points. While the Toon Army are a loyal bunch, their team can at times be unpredictable, to say the least.
Arsenal should be heading into an away game like Saturday’s fancying three points. However, the Gunners recent away record suggests that an away win is not a foregone conclusion.
Terrible away record in the Premier League
The team from north London have won two of their last three games on their travels in the top-flight. However, they have also lost eight out of their last ten away games in the Premier League.
The fact that the two away wins were against Huddersfield and Cardiff illustrates that Arsenal seems to have a problem winning on their travels if the home side has any quality at all. The Gunners even came close to draw at Cardiff.
Arsenal have been soft touches away from home, something Newcastle themselves proved when these two teams met last at St James Park in April. The Magpies emerged with a 2-1 win.
The defeat was a part of a seven-game losing run for the Gunners away from home in the top-flight. The run was quite spectacularly bad for a team that had top-four ambitions.
Will there be a change under Unai Emery?
It is hard to guess if Arsenal can improve on their travels under new boss Unai Emery. Many of the same players occupy the Gunners starting line-up, as not many new players have been integrated into the team under the Spaniard.
It would be nice to think that Emery has brought different ideas and strategies into the club. Surely, he has to make a difference. If not then he is not the right man to take the team forward.
Newcastle had a tough start to the season
On paper, it looks like Newcastle have made a terrible start to the Premier League campaign. However, the north east side have faced Tottenham, Chelsea and Manchester City in their first four league games of the campaign.
The Magpies will have seen the vulnerabilities the Gunners have displayed this season and fancy their chances of picking up points. It is unclear of if Magpies boss Rafa Benitez will use the same spoiler tactics as he has against some of the other big teams.
Looking at the Gunners recent away record, the Spaniard may not feel the need. Arsenal needs to improve that terrible record, starting with the game against Newcastle.
Will Arsenal’s away record improve this season?