The Emirates stadium hosts a Champions League tie for the first time since 2017 on Wednesday as Arsenal face PSV, a side that they competed against in the Europa League last season. Both sides won at home last year in two tight contests and although the Gunners are the favourites, PSV will put up a fight.
Mikel Arteta has brought Champions League football back to Arsenal and they will go into the competition with confidence that they can beat any opposition, which is the mentality they have applied to the Premier League last season and the beginning of this campaign. The Gunners are undefeated in the league so far, having won four out of five games. They have displayed dominance in each game and regardless of the game state, Arteta’s side always seem to find a way to perform.
The addition of Declan Rice this summer seems to have taken Arsenal to another level and his influence all over the field is admirable. He is already one of Arteta’s most important players and the intelligence he displays in and out of possession is simply unbelievable. If Rice plays well, the team performs and he will have to be at his best against PSV this week.
Peter Bosz’s PSV have been scoring for fun of late and will not be phased by the difficult task this week. The current Eredivisie leaders have netted 13 times in four games and have only conceded once, clearly highlighting that they excel at both ends of the field. Furthermore, they destroyed Rangers in the qualification process 7-3 on aggregate and the morale is high in the PSV camp, they are in a great position to face Arsenal.
The Rood-witten have an abundance of young, fearless, attackers who are full of flair and creativity. Johan Bakayoko is one of the standout stars in the side at just 20-years-old and the Belgian works in tandem with 22-year-old Ismael Saibari to supply experienced striker, Luuk de Jong. Joey Veerman has been PSV’s best player since the departure of Cody Gakpo and he will have the enormous task of disrupting the Arsenal midfield and setting the tempo for his side when in possession.
Arsenal are yet to keep a clean sheet at home this season and when you combine that with PSV’s frightening strike force, both teams should score. Arsenal will be desperate to win the game and I believe they will edge it.
The final prediction is Arsenal 2-1 PSV.