One of the most anticipated Premier League (PL) games of the season pits Mikel Arteta and Pep Guardiola against each other as table-topping Arsenal take on Manchester City. Because of Arsenal’s recent struggles, which have seen them lose consecutive Premier League games for the first time this season (D1, L1), City now has a chance to overtake them and take the lead if they win this match.
The Gunners’ 1-1 Premier League stalemate with Brentford on Saturday may have been unfortunate as Arteta claimed that officials were “changing the rules” after a questionable-looking Bees’ equalizer. Given that City has triumphed the past 10 times these clubs have met in this competition, the Spaniard might believe that they need a better chance against the only team he has failed to defeat in the Premier League (L5).
Given that City also defeated Arsenal 1-0 in the FA Cup match last month, there may be growing hope in the visiting crowd. That is Arsenal’s longest losing streak in the Premier League against one opponent. The high-flying Londoners will undoubtedly put a City team that has recently displayed some surprising weaknesses (W4, L3) to the test, despite the ease with which they defeated Aston Villa 3-1 last time out.
Guardiola, though, has won 184 of his 250 Premier League games, making him the manager with the most victories after that many games in charge. The actual task of ending a three-game losing streak on the road and recording his 185th victory at an electrifying Emirates may be made more difficult by the potential absence of prolific striker Erling Haaland, who suffered a “big knock” during their most recent victory and has supporters holding their breath ahead of this monumental matchup.
Players to keep an eye on: Eddie Nketiah, who has scored three goals in his previous four Premier League home games, might be crucial to Arsenal’s aspirations. But Riyad Mahrez of City, who recently scored and provided an assist, as well as having contributed to goals on his previous two trips to the Emirates Stadium, looms large (G1, A1).
Arsenal has lost their last eight Premier League games vs the defending champions.
Gabriel Jesus of Arsenal has made progress in his recovery from a knee injury, but the former Manchester City forward will still be out for a few weeks. Meanwhile, Mohamed Elneny, who had knee surgery last month, is expected to miss the remainder of the season.
Both Reiss Nelson and Emile Smith Rowe have been limited by injuries this season, and although both have participated in training, Arteta has said that none of them is “yet ready to contribute” to the first team.
It would be a club record in the top level if Arteta started the same lineup for a seventh straight league game, although Trossard will be vying to start ahead of Gabriel Martinelli on the left flank after scoring last weekend.
For Man City, the Premier League’s leading scorer Erling Braut Haaland has been listed as a doubt after leaving the game against Villa before halftime with a “huge knock.” John Stones is still out for the remainder of this month due to a hamstring injury.
Rico Lewis, Manuel Akanji, and Nathan Ake will all be looking to force their way back into the side after starting as replacements the previous time out. It is unknown whether Guardiola would again start only three natural defenders.
Gundogan or Bernardo Silva will probably join Kevin De Bruyne and Rodri in the center of the field, and Julian Alvarez may be chosen to start in attack alongside Mahrez and Jack Grealish if Haaland isn’t available.
Ramsdale, White, Saliba, Gabriel, Zinchenko, Xhaka, Partey, Saka, Odegaard, Martinelli, and Jesus are possible starters for Arsenal.
Ederson, Lewis, Dias, Laporte, Ake, De Bruyne, Rodri, Gundogan, Mahrez, Haaland, and Grealish might be Manchester City’s starting eleven.
We predict Arsenal 1-1 Manchester City.
There is still a long way to go in the title race, but an Arsenal victory over the reigning champions would put Arteta’s team in a strong position given that they could then go nine points ahead of the competition should they win their last match.
Both sides will consider Wednesday’s match as a game they absolutely must lose, especially so for Man City. As a result, an intense battle is anticipated at the Emirates, where the victory may be shared this time.