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Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Premier League Picks: Jesus Will Rise to Occasion

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Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Premier League Picks: Jesus Will Rise to Occasion
Arsenal's Brazilian forward Gabriel Jesus celebrates after scoring his team third goal during a club friendly against Sevilla. Photo by Justin Tallis via AFP.

The 2022-23 Premier League season kicks off with Arsenal’s visit to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace. Here are our Arsenal-Crystal Palace picks for the opening match of the new Premier League campaign.

Arsenal will be looking for revenge when they travel to South London, as it was Crystal Palace who kickstarted the Gunners’ tumble down the table in the latter stages of the 2021-22 season. The Eagles demolished Arsenal, 3-0, during Matchday 31 last season. Arsenal lost their next two matches, too, and eventually finished just outside the top four on 69 points to Spurs’ 71.

The Gunners responded to that heartbreaking finish with two significant signings – with a potential third of midfielder Youri Tielemans looming – and look poised to challenge for a Champions League spot once again. But first, they’ll have to get through Palace, who were impressively stout at home last season.

Here are my Premier League picks and predictions for Friday’s game between Arsenal and Crystal Palace (odds via DraftKings SportsbookFanDuel Sportsbook, and Bet365).

Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Game Info

Date: Friday, Aug. 5, 3 p.m. ET
TV: Sky Sports, NBC Sports, fuboTV
Location: Selhurst Park, London, England

Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Odds Analysis

The Gunners are the consensus Moneyline favorites, ranging from -120 at DraftKings to -134 at Bet365. For those looking to back the underdogs, you can get Palace at +350 at all of DraftKings, Fanduel, Bet365, and Pointsbet.

If you’re expecting goals in bunches, FanDuel is offering Over 2.5 at -104. Meanwhile, Bet365 offers the best number on the Under at -110.

Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Picks

Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Predictions

Arsenal (-120)

The Gunners used stifling defensive play at home to rack up 41 of their 69 points last season. They owned a disappointing minus-five goal differential in away matches – almost identical to their expected goal differential – compared to a brilliant plus-18 mark at home, the latter being fourth best in the Premier League.

Meanwhile, Crystal Palace were also much stronger at home than they were away from it. Something’s gotta give on the Premier League’s opening day, and it’ll be Arsenal’s newly acquired reinforcements who make the difference.

Gabriel Jesus joins Arsenal from Manchester City following six seasons as somewhat of a rotational piece in Pep Guardiola’s side. Now, he joins an Arsenal team desperate for a striker. Jesus fits the bill, and he’ll make his mark on Day 1.

Jesus tied for ninth in the league with Golden Boot winner Son Heung-min last season with 0.49 expected goals per 90 minutes. He’ll bring that efficiency to a young Gunners side packed with talented playmakers, including Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard, and Gabriel Martinelli. After scoring only as many away goals as newly promoted Brentford did in 2021-22, the Gunners will bring their shooting boots to Selhurst Park on Friday.

Arsenal may not have been the strongest away side last season, but they’ll start this campaign with three points before traveling back to the Emirates for their second match.

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Under 2.5 (-110)

Crystal Palace’s strong play at home last year was driven by a sound defensive record. They conceded the third-fewest home goals on the third-fewest expected goals against. However, their play going forward left something to be desired, and there won’t be a repeat of that Matchday 31 bloodbath this time around.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta should have his side functioning as a well-oiled machine following what was more or less a transitional year last season. No one expected Arsenal to compete for a Champions League spot with a host of young talent trying to gel, especially after they kicked off the campaign by taking just three points from four matches.

The combination of Arsenal’s continued growth at the back and Crystal Palace’s stout defensive play at home – mixed with relative scoring woes – should lead to limited chances at Selhurst Park on Friday.

Jesus to score (+185)

The Brazilian forward will finally get the minutes he’s so badly craved since joining the Premier League as a 19-year-old. Despite the aforementioned ninth-best xG per 90 minutes, that number actually represents just a fraction of how efficient Jesus was with City. In fact, 0.49 xG/90 was his second-lowest mark since entering the Premier League. He hovered around 0.80 during his first three campaigns with City, a rate that would have paced all players in the league this past season.

I expect Jesus to find that form once again now that he has consistent minutes. We should see the 25-year-old rejuvenated and ready to pounce on any goalscoring opportunity. For those interested, you can also take him as the match’s first goalscorer at a very tasty +500 with FanDuel.

Where to Bet on Arsenal vs. Crystal Palace Bets

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Arsenal-Crystal Palace picks made 8/4/2022 at 9 a.m. ET.