Stoke vs Arsenal – Saturday 19th August 2017 – 17:30 - Sky Sports Football

Stoke are 3/1 with Peter Crouch at 17/2 to score first.

Stoke face Arsenal at the Bet365 Stadium on Saturday evening, in the second round of games in the Premier League.

The Potters come into this match on the back of a 1-0 defeat against Everton, a tough result for Mark Hughes' side.

Wayne Rooney scored the only goal of the game for Everton (45+1), a fairytale start for Rooney on his return to Everton.

Everton dominated possession with 61% compared to Stoke's 39%, but both sides registered the same shots (9).

The Toffees were far more clinical when converting them on target though, with four on target compared with Stoke's one.


Improvements Needed

Stoke had a poor campaign by their standards last season, finishing in 13th place.

The result against Everton will have disappointed Hughes, but their failure to regularly trouble the Everton goal will worry the Stoke manager.

They have completed the loan signing of former Real Madrid and PSG forward Jese, who will add some class and firepower to the Stoke front line.

Stoke have had trouble in front of goal for some time, with last seasons top scorer Peter Crouch scoring just seven goals.

Potters Underdogs

Mark Hughes's side come into this match as underdogs, with last season informing the bookies.

This will be a tough match for Stoke, with Arsenal looking like a very dominant attacking force.

Stoke will be looking for a first win in seven matches against Arsenal.

StokeNew Season

The Gunners come into this match in good form, after beating Leicester in a thrilling 4-3 win in the opening game of the new season.

It was an electric start to the match, with Arsenal debutant Alexandre Lacazette opening the scoring (2).

Shinji Okazaki ensured the lead didn't last long (5), with the Leicester forward exploiting some poor Gunners defending.

Jamie Vardy (29) gave Leicester the lead for the first time in the match, making it 2-1 with his first goal of the night.

Danny Welbeck equalised for Arsenal on the stroke of half-time (45+2), with the striker just beating the offside trap.

Jamie Vardy scored his second of the night to make it 3-2 to Leicester (56), before Aaron Ramsey equalised late in the game (83) to make it 3-3.

Arsenal completed an incredible comeback, when super-sub Olivier Giroud scored Arsenal's fourth just two minutes later (85).

Pressure On Wenger 

The Gunners will be delighted to start their season with a win, but the pressure is on Arsene Wenger now.

After their poor finish last season the Gunners will need to prioritise winning the Premier League.

This will be an enormous task given the quality of sides in the league, but Arsenal fans will be expecting nothing less.

Their defence also has huge question marks hanging over it, after conceding three goals at home.


Gunners Favourites

Arsenal come into this match as the favourites, with Arsenal's recent form informing the odds.

The Gunners will be looking to win this second fixture, with a league win their ultimate aim.

Arsenal did the double over Stoke last season, with the Gunners aiming for three straight wins.

Arsenal are 17/20 with Alexandre Lacazette at 100/30 to open the scoring.


Betting Tips

Tip 1 – Giroud to score first @ 7/2

Tip 2 – Stoke to win 2-1 @ 12/1

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