Arsenal vs Bodo/Glimt predictions: Gunners face tricky Europa test
Arsenal have made a fine start to the season but they could be in for one of their sternest tests yet on Thursday when Bodo/Glimt travel to the Emirates Stadium for a Europa League Group A clash.
Bodo/Glimt lead Group A after following up a 1-1 draw against PSV EIndhoven with a narrow 2-1 victory over FC Zurich, leaving them one point clear of second-place Arsenal who have only played once in Europe this season.
The Gunners are top of the Premier League, ahead of Manchester City by just one point, but they could be in for a real battle on Thursday evening and will need to be at their best to maintain their perfect Europa League record.
With Arsenal taking on Liverpool at the Emirates on Sunday in the Premier League, Mikel Arteta is expected to rotate his side for Bodo’s visit and the likes of Fabio Vieira, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Marquinhos are all in line to start.
Thomas Partey, Martin Odegaard and Oleksandr Zinchenko are all likely to be rested for the encounter, while Mohamed Elneny and Emile Smith Rowe are both long-term absentees due to hamstring and groin injuries respectively.
Barring midfielder Sondre Fet, who is still recovering from a knee issue, Bodo have an otherwise fully-fit squad to choose from and boss Kjetil Knutsen may decide to field the same side that beat Lillestrom 4-1 last time out.
Arsenal have only tasted defeat once from nine matches across all competitions this season — claiming the spoils in the other eight fixtures — and they are on a seven-game winning streak at home in competitive games.
The Gunners have been impressive in attack, scoring 20 times in the league and twice in the Europa League, while they have the joint-second best defensive record in England’s top flight, having conceded just eight goals.
However, Arteta’s men have only kept one clean sheet in their last six outings and they may struggle to shut out Bodo, who have only failed to score in two of their 24 Eliteserien games this season.
Knutsen’s troops warmed up for this trip to North London by sticking four past Lillestrom and it promises to be an entertaining affair at the Emirates between two free-flowing sides.
While Arsenal are expected to get the victory, several changes to the line-up from the 3-1 victory over Tottenham last time out could disrupt their rhythm and there is just a slight feeling Bodo could get something from this encounter.
Taking that into account, it may prove more prudent to look in the goals department, specifically over 3.5 goals, as both of these sides have had no issues finding the back of the net this season.
Arsenal have only failed to score two or more goals in one of their nine matches this term, while there has been more than three goals in two of their four matches at home.
As for Bodo, there has been over 3.5 goals in four of their last six away games across all competitions and it would be no surprise to again see more than three goals, which is priced at 21/10 via LiveScore Bet, on Thursday.