Arsenal at home, and Arsenal at home to Olympiakos

by Bulldog Drummond

It really begins to look as the dreadful run of results in home matches is well and truly over and tonight’s game gives the club a chance to take another step towards recovering our credibility at the Arsenal stadium.

Home games only…

Date Game Res Score Competition
27 Oct 2019 Arsenal v Crystal Palace D 2-2 Premier League
02 Nov 2019 Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers D 1-1 Premier League
23 Nov 2019 Arsenal v Southampton D 2-2 Premier League
28 Nov 2019 Arsenal v Eintracht Frankfurt L 1-2 Europa League
05 Dec 2019 Arsenal v Brighton and Hove Albion L 1-2 Premier League
15 Dec 2019 Arsenal v Manchester City L 0-3 Premier League
29 Dec 2019 Arsenal v Chelsea L 1-2 Premier League
01 Jan 2020 Arsenal v Manchester United W 2-0 Premier League
06 Jan 2020 Arsenal v Leeds United W 1-0 FA Cup
18 Jan 2020 Arsenal v Sheffield United D 1-1 Premier League
16 Feb 2020 Arsenal v Newcastle United W 4-0 Premier League
23 Feb 2020 Arsenal v Everton W 3-2 Premier League

After four home defeats we have had four wins and a draw at home.

What’s more, normally in the Europa League we are however fairly solid at home, and last season in reaching the final we won all our home games except for a goalless home draw with Sporting.

This suggests to me we are over the worst of the bad run and normal service of a solid set of performances at home can be resumed – even against a team that is yet to be beaten this season.

And although historic results against Olympiakos are not always encouraging there is only the 2015 group stage defeat at home – which itself was turned around by a brilliant 3-0 away win just over two months later.

Date Match Result Score Competition
29 Sep 2009 Arsenal v Olympiakos W 2-0 Champions League
09 Dec 2009 Olympiakos v Arsenal L 1-0 Champions League
28 Sep 2011 Arsenal v Olympiakos W 2-1 Champions League
06 Dec 2011 Olympiakos v Arsenal L 3-1 Champions League
03 Oct 2012 Arsenal v Olympiakos W 3-1 Champions League
04 Dec 2012 Olympiakos v Arsenal L 2-1 Champions League
29 Sep 2015 Arsenal v Olympiakos L 2-3 Champions League
09 Dec 2015 Olympiakos v Arsenal W 0-3 Champions League
20 Feb 2020 Olympiakos v Arsenal W 0-1 Europa League

And there is the fact that Olympiakos have won just one of their past 12 matches in the knockout stage of major European competition, at least according to the BBC.  I haven’t checked that one.

So the opposition are certainly not a walkover and the 2015 results show we can’t assume a simple victory despite winning at their place on 20 February.  But they traditionally don’t do very well at this stage of an out-of-Greece experience.

The update on Kolasinac is that his injury was “significant” shoulder injury during Sunday’s 3-2 win against Everton, and Arteta has said the signs are “not very positive”, meaning that surgery could be needed and Kolasinac will then be out for the rest of the season.  But fortunately, we have one very good replacement in Bukayo Saka, as we have seen, and eventually, Tierney will return as well.

Mr Arteta has been talking about routes into Europe for next season, of which winning the Europa is obviously one.  (Winning the FA Cup and finishing seventh in the League are the other two).  So it is positive all round.

Let’s hope so.