The Premier League leaders will look to put another three points on the board at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday. We look ahead with our data-powered Arsenal vs Wolves prediction and preview.
Arsenal vs Wolves Stats: The Quick Hits
- The Opta supercomputer predicts a 57.1% chance of victory for Arsenal when they host Wolves (17.4%) at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.
- Arsenal have won just 50% of their Premier League games in December (86/172), only having a lower win rate in January (48.7%) and November (45.4%) between August and May in the competition.
- Gabriel Jesus has been involved in seven goals in his six Premier League starts against Wolves (six goals, one assist), scoring and assisting in Arsenal’s 5-0 win in this exact fixture last season.
Arsenal host Wolves at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday eyeing a win to consolidate their place at the Premier League summit.
Kai Havertz nodded in an 89th-minute winner away at Brentford last weekend to take advantage of the draw between Manchester City and Liverpool earlier in the day, moving Mikel Arteta’s men to the top of the league table.
It was a position they were in for the majority of last season, before a few stumbles late on combined with a storming run of form from Pep Guardiola’s Man City saw Arsenal pipped to the title.
Bukayo Saka provided the assist for Havertz’s winner against Brentford, taking the winger to a combined nine goals and assists in the Premier League season. Those goal involvements have been worth nine points to Arsenal, with only those of City’s Erling Haaland worth more to his team (10).
The defence has also been a major factor in Arsenal’s success to this point, keeping the most clean sheets (six) and conceding the fewest goals (10) of any Premier League side this season. Their 10 goals conceded is their fewest 13 games into a season since 2013-14 (also 10).
That Arsenal backline will be tested this weekend, though, with Wolves having now scored in each of their last 12 Premier League games since blanking against Manchester United on the opening matchday. It’s their second-longest scoring streak in Premier League history, following an 18-match run between August and December 2019.
Only Mohamed Salah (11) has scored or assisted a goal in more different Premier League games than Wolves’ Hwang Hee-chan (nine) this season. Hwang hasn’t scored or assisted more than once in any game so far, with no player having more goal involvements without doing so more than once in a game (nine, same as Saka).
Gary O’Neil’s side have already won a Premier League game against the league leaders this season, beating Man City 2-1 in September. However, they have lost all six of their away games against sides in first place in the competition, a statistic that will provide encouragement for Arsenal, although Wolves did beat Tottenham not long ago.
The Gunners’ recent record in December will also give them confidence for Saturday, winning their last six Premier League games in that month, as will their superb display against Lens in the Champions League in midweek, thumping the French side 6-0 to secure their safe passage through to the last 16 as group winners.
Arteta will have been relieved to see no additional injuries during that game, though Fábio Vieira, Thomas Partey and Emile Smith Rowe will all be unavailable for Saturday while Jurriën Timber remains sidelined after undergoing anterior cruciate ligament surgery in August.
For O’Neil, Craig Dawson’s return from a one-game suspension will be a big boost for Saturday, though the ongoing absence of Pedro Neto from the lineup with a thigh injury continues to be a blow. Rayan Aït Nouri went off injured after rolling his ankle in the defeat at Fulham on Monday and won’t be available this weekend, while midfielders Mario Lemina and João Gomes are suspended.
Arsenal vs Wolves Head-to-Head
Arsenal have won their last four Premier League games against Wolves, having won just two of their previous eight against them.
Wolves have never kept a clean sheet in their 18 previous Premier League games against Arsenal, losing this exact fixture 5-0 last season. In Premier League history, only West Bromwich Albion have faced an opponent more without ever recording a shutout (26, also against Arsenal).
That 5-0 scoreline came on the final day of last term, with goals from Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Jesus, Jakub Kiwior and a Granit Xhaka double ending Arsenal’s campaign with a flourish, finishing with 84 points, their most since the 2003-04 ‘Invincibles’ season.
Arsenal’s rampant 6-0 win over Lens on Wednesday was their fourth straight victory in all competitions. They have scored in all but one of their 20 games this season, going down 1-0 at St James’ Park against Newcastle United in early November.
Arsenal have scored in their last 31 meetings with Wolves in all competitions, since a 1-0 home loss in February 1979. If they score on Saturday, it will equal their longest scoring streak against an opponent in their history (current run of 32 against West Bromwich Albion).
Wolves have won just one of their last four matches, though they have been on the end of a number of controversial VAR decisions during that run, and Gary O’Neil will be hoping his team will be on the right end of the officiating this weekend.
Opta Power Rankings
The Opta Power Rankings are a global team ranking system that assigns an ability score to over 13,000 domestic football teams on a scale between zero and 100, where zero is the worst-ranked team in the world and 100 is the best team in the world.
Ahead of kick-off this weekend, here is the Opta Power Ranking for both sides
Arsenal vs Wolves Opta Player Ratings
Before kick-off in this match, here are the top five performing players from both teams in the 2023-24 Premier League according to the Opta Player Ratings:
Oleksandr Zinchenko: 81.2 (out of 100)
Declan Rice: 80.3
Ben White: 75.7
William Saliba: 73.5
Bukayo Saka: 72.4
Hwang Hee-Chan: 73.7 (out of 100)
Pedro Neto: 69.0
Craig Dawson: 67.5
Toti Gomes: 67.4
Maximilian Kilman: 65.9
These Opta Player Ratings also power our set of brand-new, free-to-play gaming experiences, which you can play on Opta Analyst all season long.
Arsenal vs Wolves Prediction
The Opta supercomputer is backing Arsenal as big favourites to pick up a sixth straight home win in all competitions on Saturday, taking the three points in 57.1% of the 10,000 simulations conducted ahead of the weekend.
Wolves are given a 17.4% chance of claiming a third away league win of the season, while the teams come away with a point each 25.5% of the time.
Despite Arsenal leading the Premier League through 13 games, the Opta supercomputer believes they will finish third, given a 9.33% chance of winning the title, compared to 79.3% and 10.15% for Manchester City and Liverpool respectively. Wolves, meanwhile, are expected to finish comfortably in mid-table, predicted to finish 13th and relegated in just 1.19% of simulations carried out ahead of Matchday 14.