By Jonty Banks

31st Mar, 2023 | 8:10am

Chris Sutton predicts result of Leeds United clash v Arsenal in Premier League for BBC Sport

Chris Sutton believes Leeds United will not be a straightforward test for league-leaders Arsenal when the two sides square off at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday, 1 April.

Making his predictions for BBC Sport, Sutton admitted that although Javi Gracia’s side were impressive in their 4-2 win against Wolves before the international break, they would ultimately be undone by Mikel Arteta’s star-studded attack, predicting a 2-0 loss for the Whites.

Leeds, who currently sit two points clear of the Premier League relegation zone, have been rocked this week by injured trio Tyler Adams, Max Wober, and Willy Gnonto, who Gracia confirmed would all miss out on the trip to face the Gunners.

Predicting the result of the Premier League clash in the capital, Sutton wrote: “I have said many times this season that Leeds have got some talented players who have not put a 90-minute performance together, and they finally did that with their 4-2 win at Wolves before the international break.

“I certainly don’t see this as being straightforward for Arsenal but the Gunners are on this marvellous run of six successive league wins since they lost to Manchester City in February, and they always seem to find a way of getting the right result.

“Leeds will be lively and I really like Wilfried Gnonto when he gets on the ball but Arsenal have got Bukayo Saka, who is the best right-winger in the world at the moment. 

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“Gabriel Jesus will be closer to full fitness now too after getting some minutes under his belt in March so they have got some great options up front. Arsenal will create lots of chances and I don’t see Leeds keeping them out.”

Tough ask

If Gracia already didn’t have his back up against the wall, he certainly does now.

Whereas other relegation-threatened Premier League teams used the international break as an opportunity to nurse players back to full health and perfect tactical systems with the majority of their teams, Leeds have done the opposite.

The injuries picked up by Gnonto and Wober for their respective countries and the news that Adams could be out for the remainder of the season are three sucker punches to Leeds’ Premier League survival hopes this season.

Adams, in particular, has been a shining light in an otherwise underwhelming season for the West Yorkshire outfit, and his absence will be most evident in games such as the Arsenal clash this weekend.

Luckily Gracia has a host of options to call upon in the middle of the park, including Weston McKennie, Marc Roca and Sam Greenwood, so shuffling the pack here shouldn’t be a huge issue.

Due to the high number of injuries and Arsenal’s flying form in the league, the trip to the Emirates is somewhat of a free hit for Gracia.

In other Leeds United, the Whites are now in pole position to seal their first signing under Javi Gracia despite interest from a Premier League rival.

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