On Thursday night, Arsenal host Napoli at the Emirates Stadium in the Europa League quarter-final first leg.
Arsenal head into this game on the back of a disappointing 1-0 win at Everton in the Premier League. The defeat ended a three-game winning run for the Gunners in all competitions, with all three victories coming at the Emirates Stadium.
A return to the home soil on Thursday will be a welcome one for Gunners, who have a strong home record of late. Unai Emery’s team has won ten of their last 11 home games in all competitions, including their last seven matches at the Emirates.
The team from north London are unbeaten in eight home matches in the Europa League, having recorded six wins and two draws. A major plus for the Gunners of late in Europe has been the fact they have kept clean sheets in their last four home matches in the competition.
Napoli are in their seemingly perennial position of second in Serie A. However, with Juventus runaway leaders in the Italian top-flight, the Europa League is the visitors best hope of success this season.
The visitors have won four of their last five games in Europe, and four of their six games in the competition since dropping out of the Champions League in February. The Italian team have been prolific of late in the Europa League, scoring at least twice in four of their last five matches in the competition.
Napoli have won six of their last nine away games in the Europa League. However, Carlo Ancelotti’s team suffered a 3-1 defeat at Salzburg. Their recent away games in Europe have been low-scoring, with five of their last eight matches on their travels producing under 2.5 goals.
Arsenal will once again be without Danny Welbeck, Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin through injury. Granit Xhaka and Laurent Koscielny are both still doubts. Aaron Ramsey and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang should return to the starting line-up after coming off the bench at Everton last time out.
Napoli are set to be without Raul Albiol and Amadou Diawara due to injury. Former Gunners goalkeeper David Ospina is still a fitness doubt after sustaining a head injury last month. Kalidou Koulibaly and Nikola Maksimovic missed the visitors last Europa League game through suspension but should return for this clash.
Arsenal are the favourites to win this clash at odds of 29/20, while Napoli are odds of 2/ 1 to record a victory and the draw is odds of 5/2.
This is no doubt a tough tie for the Gunners and they are likely going to need a good first leg win to progress into the last four of the competition.
Will Arsenal beat Napoli on Thursday night?