Mark Lawrenson states his prediction for Fulham v Arsenal
The Liverpool FC legend is backing Fulham to secure a 1-1 draw with Arsenal at Craven Cottage on Sunday
Mark Lawrenson is predicting that Arsenal’s winning run will come to an end at Fulham in Sunday’s early kick-off.
The Gunners have made impressive progress under new manager Unai Emery following a difficult start to the Premier League season.
Indeed, Arsenal slumped to successive losses to defending Premier League champions Manchester City and bitter derby rivals Chelsea FC in their opening two games.
However, the north London side responded with five straight victories to hoist themselves up to fifth place in the Premier League table ahead of Manchester United.
Arsenal have eased to commanding victories over West Ham, Cardiff City, Everton, Watford and Newcastle United to build some momentum under Arsene Wenger’s replacement.
However, the Gunners will face a difficult encounter against promoted side Fulham at Craven Cottage on Sunday as the Cottagers look to win for the fourth time in their last 31 meetings with Arsenal.
Fulham have made a steady if unspectacular return to the English top flight following a return of five points from their opening seven fixtures in the Premier League.
In fact, the Cottagers’ only Premier League scalp so far was a 4-2 win over Burnley at Craven Cottage on Sunday 26 August.
Former Liverpool FC defender Lawrenson is tipping Fulham to pick up their sixth point of the Premier League campaign against their London rivals this Sunday lunchtime.
“Ryan Sessegnon clattered the bar for Fulham against Everton last week when the game was goalless,” Lawrenson told BBC Sport.
“I just felt if the Cottagers were going to get a positive result at Goodison Park, they had to score first.
“Unfortunately for them, they didn’t – and they ended up collapsing a little bit in the end.”
Lawrenson added: “I think they might get something out of this game, though. Arsenal are still on a very good run, but they played in Azerbaijan on Thursday while Fulham have had the week off.”
Arsenal have a good record at Craven Cottage, having won their last two fixtures in west London to provide Gunners supporters with encouragement ahead of this weekend’s clash.
Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud were on the score sheet in the north London side’s comfortable 3-0 win against Fulham in their last visit to Craven Cottage in 2013.
Fulham have managed to record one win in their last 11 meetings with Arsenal after Bobby Zamora’s late winner sealed a 2-1 comeback win in 2012.
Arsenal are still on a very good run, but they played in Azerbaijan on Thursday while Fulham have had the week off
Arsenal are looking to record six successive victories for the first time under Emery, which would be a feat last achieved by the Gunners between August and October 2016.
The Gunners have a 51.3 per cent win rate in London derbies, which is the best record in the Premier League.