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Transfer Rater: M'Baye Niang to Arsenal

 By Tom Adams

Despite Giroud's hot streak, Arsenal better off with him on the bench

Olivier Giroud says he and his Arsenal teammates are hopeful that manager Arsene Wenger will resign with the club.
English Premier League: Olivier Giroud (37') Swansea City 0-1 Arsenal
Olivier Giroud celebrates with a tribute to his scorpion-kick goal, plus relive Messi's double nutmeg in The Sweeper!

It would be an act of football heresy. Dropping a player who has scored in five consecutive games would be seen as treachery of the highest order, going against all the natural laws of sport. But even so, there is an argument that is exactly what Arsenal should do with Olivier Giroud this weekend in their home match against Burnley.

In America they call it the hot-hand phenomenon: the belief, whether true or not, that because you have done something repeatedly with success recently, you are...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Trending: Diego Costa back for Chelsea, Memphis Depay leaves United

FC's Stewart Robson and Paul Mariner have differing opinions on how Diego Costa's teammates will view him after his absence.
Alison Bender and Gab Marcotti discuss whether moving to the Chinese Super League would be the right move for Diego Costa.
Ian Darke thinks it's probable that Chelsea will relieve tensions with Diego Costa and continue unscathed.

Here are the latest stories for Friday.

CHELSEA: Antonio Conte has confirmed Diego Costa will be available for Chelsea's Premier League game against Hull City on Sunday.

MAN UNITEDLyon have signed Memphis Depay from Manchester United and presented the Netherlands international on Friday after he signed a four-and-a-half-year contract, the club confirmed in a statement.

- Jose Mourinho hopes Depay performs so well at Lyon that the outgoing United winger one day returns to Old...

Welbeck's return gives Wenger hard decisions to make in Arsenal's attack

Olivier Giroud says he and his Arsenal teammates are hopeful that manager Arsene Wenger will resign with the club.

For the second year in a row, Danny Welbeck's return from a long-term knee injury should give Arsenal's attack a big boost. However, it will also create some "luxury" problems for Arsene Wenger, who suddenly finds himself with more attacking talent than he may know what to do with.

There was already a debate raging over whether Alexis Sanchez or Olivier Giroud should be Wenger's main centre-forward. Now, though, the return of Welbeck, as well as increasingly impressive cameo appearances by Lucas...

 By Jamie Smith

Tarkowski providing Sean Dyche with a dilemma ahead of Arsenal clash

Young James Tarkowski has been impressive of late and is knocking on the door of a starting spot for Burnley.

Sean Dyche does not like changing his defence unless he is forced into a switch, but James Tarkowski is doing everything he can to get into the Burnley starting backline.

Tarkowski was virtually faultless in two FA Cup games against Sunderland, in which the team picked up a pair of clean sheets, with young goalkeeper Nick Pope protected so well he hardly got his gloves dirty.

It is more than a year since Dyche made any unforced changes to his regular back four and goalkeeper, with a 3-0 Boxing...

Don't dismiss Arsenal from title race just yet with crunch clashes looming

Paul Mariner and Ross Dyer make their predictions for which teams will grab the top four spots in the Premier League.
A stoppage time winner from Laurent Koscielny sealed a dramatic 1-0 win over Burnley in their last meeting.
Arsene Wenger has confirmed Per Mertesacker has signed a one-year contract extension with Arsenal.
Stewart Robson joins the FC boys to discuss Alexis Sanchez's mood swings at Arsenal and why he'll be leaving the Gunners.

The idea that, for some, Arsenal are not in the title race is a strange one when you look at the league table. The gap to Chelsea is obvious, and with a crunch game coming up against the leaders in February, there's a chance to close the difference.

In the meantime, though, pundits have written this season off as more of the same from Arsene Wenger's team, which is slightly unfair at this stage.

Firstly, nobody expected Chelsea to go on a 13-game win streak after losing 3-0 to the Gunners back in...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Man City and Spurs to draw, Chelsea to ease past Hull, Stoke upset United?

Steve Nicol and Alexis Nunes pick the winners of the best Premier League match ups this weekend.
The Exploding Heads preview the huge game between Man City and Tottenham, and the Dembele-go-around.

Another weekend of top Premier League action is upon us, and it's a big one for Pep Guardiola as his Manchester City side take on Tottenham. City have struggled in recent months, while Tottenham are on the rise, but who will come out on top at the Etihad?

Meanwhile, Chelsea have Diego Costa back in the squad but don't seem to need him that much as they take on lowly Hull City seven points clear at the top of the table.

Liverpool host Swansea, while Manchester United travel to Stoke and Arsenal will...