BBC Sport pundit gives his prediction for Arsenal v Newcastle

Mark Lawrenson looks ahead to Arsenal's home clash with Newcastle United on Monday night

Unai Emery
Arsenal manager Unai Emery (Photo: Screengrab)

Mark Lawrenson is backing Arsenal to claim a 2-0 win over Newcastle United at The Emirates on Monday night to maintain their push for a top-four finish.

The north London side are currently in fourth place in the Premier League table as they look to try and secure Champions League qualification for the first time in two years.

The Gunners have been in good form in recent weeks and their most recent Premier League outing was a triumphant 2-0 win over Manchester United at The Emirates before the international break.

Arsenal are just one point behind third-placed Tottenham, who travel to Liverpool FC on Sunday afternoon.

Should Spurs drop points at Anfield, the Gunners will have the chance to move up into third place in the table with victory over Newcastle United on Monday night.

And Lawrenson feels that the north London side will have too much for the Magpies in front of their home fans on Monday.

Writing in his column for BBC Sport, Lawrenson said: “Rafa Benitez has taken his Newcastle side on a great run, with only one defeat in their past six games.

“The Magpies are as good as safe now, and probably only need one more win to be sure of staying up, but I don’t think they will get it here.

“While Arsenal have struggled on the road, when they are at home they play with lots of confidence. I can see this almost being a kind of routine victory for them.

“It is a worry the Gunners are so different on their travels, though. What that basically says is that everything is good at home when they have loads of the ball and that is the strength of the team when they are going forward – like they should be on Monday.

“But, when they are away, and under the cosh more, they can’t seem to cope with that. They don’t seem to be able to pick up points on a regular basis, and their results in Europe have been disappointing too.

“Unai Emery has made plenty of changes after replacing Arsene Wenger as manager but in that regard, it is still ‘same old, same old Arsenal’.”

Arsenal finished in sixth place and without a trophy in Arsene Wenger’s final campaign in charge last term.

They will return to Europa League action next month with a quarter-final clash against Napoli.

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