Football Predictions

Vitoria vs Arsenal preview, predictions & confirmed team news

By Harry Edwards

Published: 14:50, 6 November 2019

Arsenal will be looking to take a big step towards qualification for the Europa League last-32 when they face Vitoria on this afternoon.

The Gunners are top of Group F having won their opening three games and sit six points clear of third-placed Standard Liege.

Vitoria, meanwhile, are fighting for their Europa League campaign, sitting bottom of the group without a point knowing only a win will keep their slim hopes of progression alive.

The game takes place on a Wednesday due to Uefa’s rules that state two teams from the same region cannot play at home on the same day, with Braga hosting Beşiktaş on Thursday and getting to keep their original date due to having a better coefficient than Vitoria.

Read on for Vitoria v Arsenal predictions, preview, team news and TV coverage information.

When is Vitoria vs Arsenal and where can I watch live?

Competition: Europa League

Venue: Estádio D. Afonso Henriques

Date: Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Kick-off: 3:50 PM (UK time)

TV coverage (UK): BT Sport 2

Recent form

Vitoria

02 November 2019: Moreirense 1-1 Vitoria (Primeira Liga)

30 October 2019: Vitoria 5-0 Belenenses (Primeira Liga)

27 October 2019: Sporting CP 3-1 Vitoria (Primeira Liga)

24 October 2019: Arsenal 3-2 Vitoria (Europa League)

20/10/19: Sintra 1-1 Vitoria (Taca de Portugal)

Goals scored: 10 Goals conceded: Form: DWLLD

Arsenal

02 November 2019: Arsenal 1-1 Wolves (Premier League)

30 October 2019: Liverpool 5-5 Arsenal (Carabao Cup)

27 October 2019: Arsenal 2-2 Crystal Palace (Premier League)

24 October 2019: Arsenal 3-2 Vitoria (Europa League)

21 October 2019: Sheffield United 1-0 Arsenal (Premier League)

Goals scored: 11 Goals conceded: 11 Form: DDDWL

Ones to watch

Vitoria: Davidson

As Vitoria proved in the previous meeting between these two sides, Arsenal’s defence can be got at. And although he was not one of the scorers in the 3-2 defeat at the Emirates Stadium, Davidson was a big problem for Arsenal.

The 28-year-old was a constant thorn in Hector Bellerin’s side on Vitoria’s left flank, joining in with attacks on numerous occasions. He had six shots in total, more than any other player, and hit the post in the build up to Vitoria’s second.

If Vitoria wish to spring a shock result on Wednesday, Davidson will be key.

Key stat: Davidson completed three take-ons in Vitoria’s 3-2 defeat to Arsenal; the joint-best total of any player.

Arsenal: Nicolas Pepe

Arsenal, and potentially Unai Emery, were saved by Nicolas Pepe’s wonderful free-kicks two weeks ago but the Ivorian will be hoping for a bigger role this time around.

The Ivorian started the 3-2 win on the bench and was an unused substitute against Wolves at the weekend, hinting that he is likely to feature on Wednesday. Although some may have expected more from the winger given his huge transfer fee, Pepe has shown glimpses of the class that had clubs fighting to sign him in the summer.

Key stat: Nicolas Pepe has scored two goals and recorded one assist in just 69 Europa League minutes this season.

Team news

Vitoria

Ivo Vieira has named a similar XI to the one that went so close to shocking the Emirates, with Bruno Duarte leading the line. Keep an eye out for former Spurs youngster Marcus Edwards, who scored in north London and was once compared to Lionel Messi by Mauricio Pochettino.

Predicted XI: Douglas; Venancio, Tapsoba, Soares, Pepe; Evangelista, Agu, Davidson; Edwards, Duarte, Victor Garcia.

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Arsenal

Granit Xhaka has not traveled with the Arsenal squad after his fallout with the Gunners fans. The Swiss midfielder joins David Luiz, Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in a large contingent of senior players not available for Unai Emery.

There is a start, however, for Pepe who sat out of Arsenal’s draw with Wolves at the weekend. The Ivorian winger joins Bukayo Saka on the flanks with Gabriel Martinelli in attack. Meanwhile Kieran Tierney starts at left wing-back with Emery going for a back five.

Predicted XI: Martinez; Maitland-Niles, Holding, Sokratis, Mustafi, Tierney; Saka, Willock, Ceballos, Pepe; Martinelli.

Squawka prediction

The previous meeting between these two sides was a barnstorming affair and neutrals will be hoping for a similarly fiery match on Wednesday.

Given Arsenal’s unpredictability in both attack and defence, it could be another treat. As shown in the 3-2 defeat, Vitoria should not be taken lightly but with Arsenal potentially just three points away from securing their last-32 spot, the Gunners will be keen to step up a gear.

However, once again, we expect to be close.

Scoreline prediction: Vitoria 2-3 Arsenal

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