Michael Owen predicts Arsenal clash against Middlesbrough
By Russell Edge
Michael Owen believes that Arsenal will bounce back to winning ways when they visit a struggling Middlesbrough side on Monday evening.
The Gunners suffered a humiliating 3-0 defeat to Crystal Palace in their last fixture, but the former Liverpool man expects a positive reaction against a Middlesbrough side facing the threat of relegation.
Boro have only one once in their last 15 matches, and find themselves six points adrift of safety with seven games left to play.
Arsenal have fallen to seventh, ten points off the top four, although with a number of games in hand over the sides above them.
Speaking about the Gunners, Owen told BetVictor: “You have to go back to December 1984 for the last time Arsenal lost five successive away league games and they must bounce back after what was an embarrassing defeat at Palace on Monday.
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“I expect a positive reaction from the Gunners after the criticism they so richly deserved at Selhurst Park.”
Arsenal struggled to deal with the electrifying pace of Andros Townsend and Wilfried Zaha against Palace, although they should feel more comfortable against a Middlesbrough side who have struggled in front of goal this season, scoring a measly 22 goals.
However, Boro have the sixth best defensive record in the league, having conceded just 37 goals this season and having kept ten clean sheets, one more than the Gunners.
Owen sees this as a must win match for the North East club if they are to remain in the Premier League, but notes history is not on their side.
“Boro need to win to have any realistic chance of maintaining their PL status,” he told BetVictor.
“You have to go back to December 1984 for the last time Arsenal lost five successive away league games.”
In other Arsenal news, manager Arsene Wenger has issued a warning to this Arsenal player.