Arsenal v. Bournemouth: Cherry Pie

Good Brioche takes time. Anyone can make an egg and butter enriched dough but to make something that pulls apart in cloud-like whisps of gluten laced with butter just takes time. Which is the exact same thing I can say about 7amkickoff’s PREDICTRON 3000. In other words, my season predictions are not quite ready.

After a long study of the Premier League what I found was a very powerful correlation between – drum roll – the players on a team and the team’s performance. Specifically, I use a player metric for the top five players on a team and then map that to points earned in a season and I get an r^2 fit of .88. That’s a pretty ridiculously close fit.

The most important factor, so far as I can tell, is who starts the game. Nope, I’m not going to divulge how I came up with this. Not even remotely. Just like I won’t tell you my Brioche recipe.

But rest assured that Arsenal should have the firepower to beat Bournemouth at home tomorrow.

This is going to sound incredibly obvious but using my formula I see that right now, Arsenal’s best players are Ox (traded), Alexis (unfit), Ramsey, Kolasinac, Lacazette, Özil, and Giroud. Bournemouth’s top five players are Begovic, Francis, King, Daniels, and Surman. That’s a pretty lopsided affair according to my model: Bournemouth has 3/5 defenders as their best players and Arsenal 1/5 (if you count Kola). Despite Arsenal’s woes this early season, and low ratings for their top five players, Arsenal hold a significant edge in this match and should easily pick up the three points.

King, however, is not to be trifled with and Arsenal’s defense will need to stay switched on for 90 minutes or he will score. Arsenal’s defense have the 6th highest 7xG against this season.

That said, if I’m a Bournemouth supporter, I’m worried about this match. Bournemouth have the 3rd highest 7xG against and the 2nd worst 7xG for. Arsenal’s Lacazette hasn’t gotten much service this season and if Özil can get him the ball, he could wreck the Cherries.

For Arsenal supporters look for the following: Mustafi and Bellerin – need to have some good games, Bellerin is currently Arsenal’s 2nd worst player, Wenger has been talking a lot about Nelson and we know that Bellerin was tapped up by Barcelona this summer, could Nelson start? For Bournemouth: Begovich could be the deciding factor – Bournemouth have allowed a League leading 14 shots in prime and Begovich has only saved 25% of them. He will probably face a ton of shots in tough areas tomorrow and he could have one of those “world beater” matches that keepers sometimes have against Arsenal.

Match kicks off at 7am PST and is available in the USA on NBCSN.


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