Chris Sutton explains his prediction for Southampton v Arsenal

Arsenal are poised to continue their fine start to the season by claiming a 2-0 victory at Southampton on Sunday afternoon, according to Chris Sutton.

The north Londoners have been in excellent form so far this term, having won all but one of their 10 Premier League games to secure their best start to a top-flight campaign for more than 100 years and leave them top of the table.

Arsenal were made to work hard for their 1-0 victory at Leeds United last time out and they also claimed a narrow 1-0 triumph over PSV Eindhoven at The Emirates in the Europa League in midweek thanks to Granit Xhaka’s winner.

Southampton – who were 1-0 winners over Arsenal in this fixture last season thanks to Jan Bednarek’s winner – started the weekend in 14th place in the table and head into this game on the back of their 1-0 win at Bournemouth in midweek.

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side have been in strong form away from The Emirates so far this term – with the Gunners having won four successive away games in all competitions for the first time since 2018.

Former Chelsea FC man Sutton feels that Arsenal’s quality in front of goal could prove to be the difference at St Mary’s on Sunday – and he is tipping the Gunners to claim a fifth straight win in the Premier League.

Writing in his column for BBC Sport, Sutton said: “Southampton helped to finish off Arsenal’s hopes of making the Champions League places last season when they beat them at St Mary’s in April.

“This is a very different Gunners side, though. They should have too much quality up front for Saints to deal with, and they also have more steel if things are not going well.

“Arsenal’s mindset in their last win, against Leeds, epitomised that. Yes, maybe they got a break or two, but they also have the belief now that they can get through games even when they don’t play well.”

Former Manchester United defender Patrice Evra is also expecting to see Arsenal claim a 2-0 win at St Mary’s this weekend.

Writing in his own column for Metro, Evra said: “Arsenal will win. They’ve built some good momentum and they know that they have to keep winning in the league. We’re only early into the season but they’ve started the right way and they need to keep doing it.”

Meanwhile, Arsenal midfielder Xhaka has been demonstrating his importance to the Gunners side in recent weeks, with the 30-year-old having scored three goals and made three assists in 14 games in all competitions.

The Switzerland international has been leading by example on the pitch for Arteta’s side and his sparkling form caps an impressive turnaround after he was jeered by the home fans at The Emirates and stripped of the club captaincy back in 2019.

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta believes that Xhaka is now reaping the rewards of his hard work behind the scenes and fully deserves the success he is currently enjoying.

“I think everybody at the club has been trying to give him support, trying to help him, trying to guide him, trying to encourage him, and sometimes calm him down,” Arteta said when asked about Xhaka at his pre-match news conference.

“He’s a player with a big character that is very passionate about everything that he does. At the same time, he’s a really honest and humble guy and I think he deserves what he’s getting.”

Arteta added: “I think he was [close to leaving Arsenal], at least he had some thoughts about that possibility in his head. We just tried to convince him to give himself and the club another opportunity.”

After Sunday’s game, Arsenal will turn their attentions towards their trip to PSV Eindhoven in the Europa League on Thursday night, before a home clash against Nottingham Forest next Sunday.