Triple Crown winner Supreme Soul return to Jamaica now imminent

By George Davis and Mariah Ramharrack February 04, 2020

In a surprising turn of events, Supreme Soul has been cleared of having tick virus marker after a recent test was administered.  The horse has been stranded in the United States since December.

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  • The hurtful 30: Liverpool's spectacular record against Arsenal under Klopp The hurtful 30: Liverpool's spectacular record against Arsenal under Klopp

    Liverpool made it five consecutive home league wins over Arsenal on Monday with a commanding 3-1 victory at Anfield.

    Alexandre Lacazette put the visitors ahead but goals from Sadio Mane, Andy Robertson and debutant Diogo Jota secured a fully deserved three points for the Premier League champions.

    Jota's goal was special not only because it made him the 13th Liverpool player to score on his Premier League debut; it also took the Reds' tally against the Gunners to 30 in top-flight meetings since Jurgen Klopp became manager in October 2015.

    In fact, since Klopp's first match in charge, Manchester City are the only team to score more goals against a single opponent (35 versus Watford) than Liverpool have against Arsenal.

    Mikel Arteta had hoped to be the first Arsenal manager to beat Liverpool away at the first attempt since Tom Whittaker in December 1947, but the odds were firmly against him, particularly if recent meetings are anything to go by...

    13/01/2016: Liverpool 3-3 Arsenal

    Arsenal were minutes from victory the first time Klopp faced them in the league.

    Roberto Firmino had twice put Liverpool ahead, but Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud's double had the Gunners on the brink of glory until Joe Allen levelled in the 90th minute.

     

    14/08/2016: Arsenal 3-4 Liverpool

    Another thriller in 2016 and it was Liverpool who came out on top on the opening day of the new season.

    Philippe Coutinho's double had helped the Reds move 4-1 ahead after Theo Walcott's opener, but they evidently felt inclined to make the latter stages interesting, allowing Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Calum Chambers to threaten a comeback.

     

    04/03/2017: Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal

    Arteta's first visit to Anfield as Arsenal boss mirrored one of the last under Arsene Wenger.

    Mane also scored that day, in between goals from Firmino and Georginio Wijnaldum, with Danny Welbeck getting the Gunners' consolation.

    27/08/2017: Liverpool 4-0 Arsenal

    Wenger's final trip to face Liverpool was decidedly more humbling.

    Firmino, Mane, Salah and Daniel Sturridge all scored and the Gunners were lucky not to concede more. It was Oxlade-Chamberlain's final game for the club before he switched to the Reds.

     

    22/12/2017: Arsenal 3-3 Liverpool

    Wenger accused Arsenal of being "paralysed" and "frozen" as they fell 2-0 down, but three goals in five minutes through Alexis Sanchez, Granit Xhaka and Mesut Ozil set them on course for a stunning comeback.

    However, Firmino struck to deny Wenger victory in his final league game in charge against Klopp's side.

     

    03/11/2018: Arsenal 1-1 Liverpool

    A surprisingly low-scoring affair between these two stretched Arsenal's unbeaten run under new boss Unai Emery to 13 games.

    James Milner put Liverpool ahead before Alexandre Lacazette levelled, leaving Klopp to accuse his players of making life "a bit too easy" for the Gunners.

     

    29/12/2018: Liverpool 5-1 Arsenal

    Less than two months later, order was restored for Klopp.

    Ainsley Maitland-Niles gave Arsenal the lead but a Firmino hat-trick, along with goals from Mane and Salah, made sure few remembered their sluggish start.

    #LIVARS pic.twitter.com/Ukv8J5IVrX

    — Arsenal (@Arsenal) December 29, 2018 24/08/2019: Liverpool 3-1 Arsenal

    Emery's last Anfield trip ended fractionally better.

    Joel Matip and a Salah double made sure Lucas Torreira's late goal counted for little.

     

    15/07/2020: Arsenal 2-1 Liverpool

    Arteta's first game against Liverpool in charge of the Gunners is the only one Klopp has lost in the Premier League.

    With the title secured, concentration levels seemed to dip as errors from Alisson and Virgil van Dijk allowed Lacazette and Reiss Nelson to overturn Mane's opener.

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  • Can Arteta's improved Arsenal finally end their Anfield hoodoo? Can Arteta's improved Arsenal finally end their Anfield hoodoo?

    3-1. 5-1. 4-0. 3-1. It is fair to say Liverpool have dominated Arsenal in their recent Premier League meetings at Anfield.

    It is eight years since the Gunners won away at Liverpool in the top flight, Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla scoring the goals that day when Jamie Carragher and Stewart Downing were in the home squad.

    However, ahead of Monday's visit to Merseyside, there is fresh optimism in unbeaten Arsenal's ranks given the north London club have beaten Liverpool twice - once at Emirates Stadium and once at Wembley in the Community Shield - in the past two months.

    Mikel Arteta has certainly improved Arsenal, but how? And how might that help them at Anfield? We take a look at the Opta data.

     

    Possession isn't everything

    Some of Arteta's formative years were spent at Barcelona and he earned his coaching stripes at Pep Guardiola's Manchester City, but his Arsenal are not the possession-obsessed unit like those at his former stops.

    Dating back to the start of the 2019-20 season, Arsenal's possession figure in Arteta's 22 games in charge (52.9 per cent) is lower than the 18 matches they played under Unai Emery and caretaker Freddie Ljungberg (55.4 per cent).

    The Gunners had just 31.1 per cent of the ball in their 2-1 win over Liverpool in July - their lowest figure dating back to the start of last term - while they had 40.3 per cent of the ball in the Community Shield, and it could be a similar figure this time around given the Reds' recent acquisition of midfield maestro Thiago Alcantara.

    Moreover, under Arteta, Arsenal have a lower ratio of passes in the final third (17.0 per cent compared to 20.4) and a lower ratio of passes in their opponents' half (55.6 per cent compared to 58.1).

     

    A clinical side

    So where have they improved? In front of goal.

    Their shot conversion rate with Arteta in charge is 17.3, way up on the 11.3 figure of the combined Emery and Ljungberg games.

    They have scored 13 more goals in four more fixtures, with their xG (expected goals) rising from 23.27 to 27.48. The difference between their goals and expected goals since Arteta took over is stark. Before it was just 0.73, now they are outperforming their xG by a whopping 9.52, in part because they are creating far better chances.

    Could Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's changing role be a reason for that?

     

    Aubameyang: Out of left field?

    One of the most remarkable stats to emerge from Arsenal's 5-1 thumping at Liverpool in December 2018 was how ineffectual Aubameyang was. The Gabon international had just 13 touches, six of which came from a kick-off, as the game completely bypassed him while he operated in a central-attacking berth.

    He ended that season with the Premier League Golden Boot - and matched his tally of 22 goals in 2019-20, too - so making sure he is heavily involved at Anfield is obviously paramount.

    Aubameyang's role has changed since Arteta came in, with the Spaniard preferring to deploy his prized asset almost exclusively on the left.

    In 2018-19, 18.07 per cent of Aubameyang's touches came on the left third of the final third, while 19.15 per cent came in the middle third of the final third.

    In 2019-20, the share of touches he has on the left third of the final third has risen to 28.53 per cent, while it has dropped to 13.1 per cent in the middle third.

    Aubameyang can therefore be expected to stay out on the left side of Arsenal's attack, which could cause Liverpool problems given it puts him in direct competition with the attack-minded Trent Alexander-Arnold.

    Aubameyang will certainly hope to have more of an impact than he did two years ago, and the signs are good, both for him and Arteta's Arsenal.

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