Thursday, November 23, 2017

Prediction: Manchester City vs Arsenal

Verdict: Manchester City win

Best Odds: 4/9

Bookmaker: Bet365

The Premier League returns this weekend with the international break looming large. Every club will want to see this game week end in victory then, as the two weeks away from football is the perfect place for discontent to fester amongst fans. With this in mind, league leaders Manchester City host Arsenal on Sunday.

Manchester City

It has been an incredible season for Manchester City so far and they are showing no signs of slowing down. 10 games, nine wins and one draw displays their power, and they have looked comfortable in every single one of their games so far, dropping just two points this campaign. It has been a similar story in the Champions League too. A 4-2 win over Napoli, who are in a similar situation to City in Serie A, shows that the English side are currently on a different level to most of their potential opponents. Indeed, four wins from four games, a maximum of 12 points and a place in the next round of the Champions League already secured means that had City have beaten Everton all those weeks ago, it would have been a perfect start to the season. Pep Guardiola’s vision is clearly being realised with the club and their style of play is proving far too much for the opposition, with massive scorelines no longer a shock when the prospective champions play.

Team News

Manchester City have been enjoying a very successful campaign that has been aided by a lack of consistent or long-term injuries to multiple players. Of course, Benjamin Mendy (Knee) and Vincent Kompany (calf) remain out, but other than that, they have a full-strength squad to choose from.

Arsenal

It has been an odd season for Arsenal so far, but that isn’t really particularly surprising for the fans. They often begin well as they keep pace with the top sides in the opening weeks, only to lose games at vital times and fall off the pace. They currently find themselves in fifth-place in the league with 19 points, level with reigning champions Chelsea, and just a single point behind third-placed Tottenham, but nine short of Manchester City at the top. Arsene Wenger’s men have supplemented their decent league form by progressing to the knock-out stages of the Europe League despite a 0-0 draw with Red Star Belgrade on Thursday. Manchester United, Tottenham and Chelsea will all be hoping that Arsenal beat Manchester City on Sunday, thus allowing the teams to close the gap on Guardiola’s exceptional side. Arsene Wenger’s men will have to be at their very best if they are to win this one, and they will likely have to try to play City at their own game, as Guardiola’s men will want their opponents to sit deep so that they can dominate the Gunners.

Team News

Considering Arsenal are usually at the top of the injury league table, they have been rather fortunate this season. Santi Cazorla remains out with a long-term injury, while Shkodran Mustafi (thigh), Danny Welbeck and David Ospina (both groin) will potentially make their returns following the international break.

Key Factors

Manchester City have scored 35 goals in the league this season, averaging 3.5 goals per game.

City have the second best defensive record in the league, conceding just six times.

City have won their last 14 games in a row in all competitions.

Arsenal have won 10 of their last 12 in all competitions.

Arsene Wenger is the only manager to have bested Pep Guardiola while he has managed Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Manchester City.

Conclusion

Arsenal will be desperate to inflict City’s first defeat of the campaign on them, but Guardiola will know that his side are in the form of their lives, and they do not look like they will be stopped by anything short of a miracle. While Arsenal will likely go all out to win the game, we are backing the hosts to pick up yet another three points on Sunday.

Verdict: Manchester City win

Best Odds: 4/9

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Benjamin Darvill


Ben is an English and creative writing graduate that is now working his way up in the world of sports journalism. Having been writing for the last four years, Ben has written for a number of websites specialising in sport, with football a particular passion. He is a long-suffering England fan and eternal optimist when it comes to the Three Lions.

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