Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Prediction: Arsenal vs Manchester United

Verdict: Manchester United win

Best Odds: 2/1

Bookmaker: Bet365

In a real battle for a top-four finish, Arsenal will host a high-flying Manchester United side at the Emirates on Sunday afternoon.

Arsenal

Starting with the hosts, slumping to a very lackluster display in their 3-1 defeat at Ligue 1 midtable outfit Rennes on Thursday night, Arsenal have continued on a season that can be best described as inconsistent. Although Unai Emery may have seen his side come crashing out of the FA Cup thanks to a 3-1 loss against Manchester United at the Emirates back in January, it has been the Gunners’ success in North London really spearheading their top-four charge. With the chance to leapfrog Sunday’s visitors and move within a point of bitter-rivals Tottenham, Arsenal are unbeaten in their last 14 home league games, winning 12 of those contests. If Emery’s side are to continue their push for a Champions League return, the former Sevilla boss will be looking for the in-form Alexandre Lacazette to carry on his recent success in the final third. The France international has now scored in each of his last five Premier League outings in North London and a sixth consecutive goal on Sunday would see him become the second Arsenal player to score in six home games on the bounce.

Team News

Arsenal’s Lucas Torreira begins a three-game ban after losing an appeal against his dismissal versus Tottenham.

Striker Alexandre Lacazette returns after missing Thursday’s Europa League defeat in Rennes through suspension.

Manchester United

As for the visitors, it would be an understatement to say that the mood in Manchester United’s camp isn’t at a season-high. Turning around their two-goal deficit against PSG in midweek and booking their spot in the quarterfinals of this year’s Champions League, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has transformed the Reds into arguably the most in-form side in Europe. Yet to be beaten domestically since the Norweigan icons arrival back in December, it has been their form away from Old Trafford most catching the eye. Now sat in the top-four and with the chance to move level with Spurs, United have won their last nine matches on the road, a run that has seen them pick up victories over Arenal, Tottenham, Chelsea and PSG. While Arsenal have one man enjoy a purple patch, Manchester United have their own red-hot attacking option. Bagging a brace in Paris on Wednesday and continuing his very eye-catching run of form, Belgian international Romelu Lukaku has now scored six goals in his last three matches across all competitions.

Team News

Anthony Martial is available after a groin injury for Manchester United, who were without 10 players against Paris St-Germain in midweek.

Eric Bailly has recovered from a heavy challenge in that game, while Nemanja Matic and Ander Herrera could be fit.

Paul Pogba is available after serving a European suspension.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Manchester United’s last two visits to the Emirates Stadium in league and cup have ended in 3-1 victories.
  • They last won three consecutive away games against the Gunners between 1983 and 1985.
  • Arsenal have earned 38 Premier League points at home this season, a tally exceeded only by Manchester City’s 42.
  • Romelu Lukaku has six goals in his last three games.
  • United are chasing a seventh consecutive away league win, a feat they last achieved in 1993.

Conclusion

Although Arsenal have saved their best performances for North London, it is almost impossible to bet against a resurgent Manchester United. Doing the impossible and picking up a 3-1 win in Paris last time out, coupled with their 3-1 win at the Emirates back in January, we’re backing an away victory on Sunday.

Verdict: Manchester United win

Best Odds: 2/1

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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