With the business end of the calendar year approaching rapidly, we take another quick look at the most exciting match-ups to watch out for on Saturday.
Premier League – Leeds United vs Arsenal
Saturday’s Premier League action concludes at Elland Road as Leeds United and Arsenal lock horns in an enthralling showdown.
Following a respectable mid-table finish last season, the Whites look to be sinking without a trace this term after winning just 17.65% of their league matches and scoring an average of one goal per game.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side suffered an embarrassing 7-0 defeat away to reigning English champions Manchester City in midweek, summing up their underwhelming Premier League campaign in a nutshell.
On the bright side, though, after losing back-to-back home league fixtures in September, Leeds have gone unbeaten in their last five such contests in a row (W2, D3).
However, their encouraging home form will be on the line against an Arsenal side they’ve failed to beat across their last ten H2H meetings in all competitions (D2, L8).
Meanwhile, the Gunners eased past a 10-man West Ham side 2-0 in midweek Premier League action, building on another eye-catching 3-0 win over Southampton last weekend.
Though they head into proceedings occupying the last Champions League spot, Mikel Arteta’s team will have to defy their disastrous away form to remain on the upwards trajectory.
Arsenal have lost their last three Premier League away games and could make it four consecutive road defeats in the competition for the first time since May 2018, under Arsene Wenger’s tenure.
Bundesliga – Hertha BSC vs Borussia Dortmund
Saturday’s Bundesliga action closes out with an exciting showdown between bottom-half Hertha BSC and second-placed Borussia Dortmund.
Though there’s a sizeable gulf in points between the sides, Dortmund’s lackluster away league form could level the odds.
Marco Rose’s men have registered a clear minority (29%) of their total Bundesliga points this season away from home (10/34), picking up just three wins from seven league travels to date (D1, L3).
Against this backdrop, Die Borussen have won their last three top-flight visits to Hertha, notably bagging 2+ goals on each occasion, at an average of 3.33 per game.
As for Die Alte Dame, a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Mainz last time out flushed their three-game unbeaten Bundesliga streak down the toilet (W1, D2).
Having won just one of their last seven league fixtures (D3, L3), Tayfun Korkut’s side languish a mere one point clear of relegation-threatened Augsburg.
Hertha can draw some confidence from an inspiring four-game undefeated streak in home Bundesliga matches (W2, D2), all of which featured under 2.5 overall goals.
Serie A – Atalanta vs Roma
Saturday’s Serie A action kicks off at Gewiss Stadium as third-placed Atalanta and sixth-placed Roma go head-to-head in a mammoth fixture.
La Dea extended their winning Serie A run to six matches last weekend after coming from a 1-0 deficit to beat Hellas Verona 2-1 away from home.
Now unbeaten in their last ten league outings on the trot (W7, D3), Gian Piero Gasperini’s players are only six points adrift of pacesetters Inter Milan.
Considering they have a game in hand over the reigning Serie A holders, a third consecutive top-flight home victory over Roma would keep Atalanta’s title dreams alive.
As they’ve lost just one of their last six Serie A H2Hs on home turf (W3, D2), that prospect is very much within the realm of possibility.
On the other hand, Roma secured a comfortable 2-0 win over a 10-man Spezia last time out, halting a run of successive league defeats ‘to nil.’
A lack of consistency on hostile turf has seen Roma alternate between winning and losing across their last five Serie A away games (W2, L3), four of which yielded a narrow one-goal margin.
Worryingly, Jose Mourinho’s men have won none of their last 12 top-flight meetings with sides starting the day inside the top-five positions in the standings (D6, L6).