Arsene Wenger’s Gunners sit eight points behind Chelsea with 16 games remaining, and need Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool to do them a favour and beat Antonio Conte’s league leaders to open up the title race.
Wenger will be serving the second game of his four-match touchline ban against Watford, but with a trip to Stamford Bridge up next for the Gunners, Arsenal do not their coach on the sidelines to remind them that Tuesday’s encounter could be an important stepping stone to a potentially decisive title clash this weekend.
With Liverpool and Chelsea facing off on Tuesday night, Arsenal will be looking to capitalise on any potential slip-ups from their Premier League rivals as they welcome Watford at the Emirates Stadium with kick-off scheduled for 7:45pm GMT today, Tuesday, January 31.
Danny Welbeck is unlikely to be risked from the start, while Granit Xhaka is still suspended.
Goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon is out with a leg injury and Jose Holebas and Mauro Zarate are serving bans.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger on the strength of his squad: “I believe that number-wise and quality-wise, we have what is required to do well.
“It also shows that all the teams in England, especially the big teams, have big squads. That’s why not a lot happened.”
Watford head coach Walter Mazzarri on the weekend FA Cup exit compounding recent poor form: “We have to react immediately.
“Due to our situation, given injuries and that there are just two days until the next game, the manager makes the decision of putting the best possible team out in that moment.”
Prediction: Arsenal 3-1 Watford
Arsenal have won their last seven league matches against Watford, scoring 19 goals. However, Watford beat the Gunners 2-1 at the Emirates in last season’s FA Cup quarter-final tie.
The Gunners have won five successive home matches in the Premier League and are unbeaten in 10 at the Emirates Stadium since losing to Liverpool on the opening weekend of the season.
Watford are enduring a seven-game winless run in the Premier League (D3, L4). They failed to score in four of those games.
Heurelho Gomes has conceded 23 goals in eight Premier League games against Arsenal, nine more than any other team he has faced.