A dominant 3-0 win over Fulham on matchday one means Arsenal have now won their opening Premier League (PL) game in consecutive seasons for the first time since 2009/10, yet their record in their first home game of a new campaign from that season onwards leaves a lot to be desired (W5, D1, L5).
The ‘Gunners’ may have lost just three PL home games last term (W10, D6, L3), but their average of 1.26 goals conceded per fixture here put them firmly in the division’s bottom half for that metric. An early goal could be on the cards too if the last term is anything to go by, as the opener was netted by the 21st minute on average at the Emirates last season, the earliest such stadium average in the PL. In fact, only twice was the first match goal scored after HT here.
West Ham United started the season with a 2-0 defeat despite holding opponents Newcastle level at HT, giving them a division-record 14th PL season-opening defeat in their history! However, whilst they’re winless in their last four first away games of a new PL campaign (D1, L3), the last one they won happened to be at Arsenal back in 2015/16!
Since then, the visitors have lost five straight competitive away H2Hs, despite four being level at HT. There was a similar theme in West Ham’s PL away defeats last season too, with 50% witnessing a level HT scoreline.
Players to watch: Finally signing a new contract during the week, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s goal last time out made him the first Arsenal player since Robert Pires (2004/05) to score in consecutive PL season openers.
Michail Antonio scored six goals across West Ham’s final four PL matches of last season, four were netted before HT.
Hot streak: Arsenal is unbeaten in their last 25 competitive games played in the month of September (W20, D5).
Palace’s Jordan Ayew scored at Old Trafford last season, and two of his final three PL goals last season came in away fixtures.
Hot stat: Manchester United have won more PL penalties than any other side in each of the previous two seasons, averaging 13 each campaign.