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Goal-greedy Arsenal flyer boosted to industry best for opener

| 03.12.2014

Ladbrokes have stuck their necks on the block ahead of Arsenal’s Premier League clash against Southampton at the Emirates, with the bookies boosting red-hot Chilean poacher Alexis Sanchez from 4/1 to an industry best 5/1 for the first goal.

It’s no overstatement to say Alexis has carried the struggling Gunners at times this term, with 13 goals in his last 17 appearances and seven in as many matches since the end of October.

The 25-year-old has opened the scoring seven times during his current run of goal-grabbing, a stat that suggests he should be closer to a 5/2 shot rather than the price on offer.

None of Alexis’ immediate competitors to break the deadlock are in nearly as good form as the former Barcelona man.

Fellow Gunner Danny Welbeck’s opener at West Brom last time out was his first strike for seven games, and the northerner has only broken the deadlock twice for his new side in 14 all-competition appearances.

Southampton’s Graziano Pelle is on a five-game scoreless run and has managed less than half as many first goals since signing on at St Mary’s over the summer.

The pair look poor value at 5/1 and 7/1 respectively relative to the South American hitman, as does Olivier Giroud at a top-price 9/2 having made just one start in all competitions since August due to injury.

Giroud hasn’t bagged an opening goal in nine games for club and country since the World Cup group stage, so with first-scorer pedigree in short supply at the Emirates, Alexis at 5/1 is a wager to savour.

Arsenal are an industry-best 4/5 to continue their recent revival with a third victory on the bounce, having failed to win any of their previous three, with Southampton 19/5 and the draw 13/5.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Alex Fortune