PREMIER LEAGUE

AUTHOR: William Kedjanyi

STAR FOOTBALL PREVIEW Sun: Manchester City v Arsenal

A title decider looms this Sunday afternoon as treble-hunting Manchester City host high-flying Arsenal with Mikel Arteta looking to continue the Gunners’ momentum in a push for the Premier League crown, writes JOSHUA STACEY.

Before the International break Arsenal fans had plenty to shout about, winning nine from their last ten in all competitions and scoring at will. Mikel Arteta’s men will be hoping their positive run continues and after a penalty shootout victory against Porto in the Champions League round of 16 second leg two weeks ago, the traveling Emirates’ faithful can be optimistic about lifting silverware this season.

Manchester City find themselves one point off Arsenal in the Premier League and with historic back-to-back trebles a possibility, the importance of another three points this weekend against a galvanised Gunners cannot be understated.

Pep Guardiola’s squad didn’t benefit from the International break, with Kyle Walker and John Stones suffering injuries in England’s fixtures against Brazil and Belgium – both have been ruled out of this clash. On a positive note, Manuel Akanji will be available for selection and Brazilian shot-stopper, Ederson, could also line-up between the sticks after a period on the sidelines.

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Manchester City v Arsenal
Premier League
Etihad Stadium, Manchester
16.30 Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Premier League

HEAD-TO-HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches – 10 years)
OCT 2023 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 1-0 Manchester City
AUG 2023 FA COMMUNITY SHIELD Arsenal 1-1 Manchester City (P)
APR 2023 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 4-1 Arsenal
FEB 2023 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 1-3 Manchester City
JAN 2023 FA CUP Manchester City 1-0 Arsenal
JAN 2022 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 1-2 Manchester City
AUG 2021 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 5-0 Arsenal
FEB 2021 PREMIER LEAGUE Arsenal 0-1 Manchester City
DEC 2020 LEAGUE CUP Arsenal 1-4 Manchester City
OCT 2020 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 1-0 Arsenal

This is a must-win game for Manchester City’s chances of defending a fourth consecutive Premier League title – currently ? with starsports.bet – and if Arsenal can’t cause an upset, the Cityzens will believe they’re in pole position to lift the trophy again.

Arsenal make the trip up north off the back of eight back-to-back wins in the League, scoring 33 goals in that time and averaging 4.1 goals per-game. With Kyle Walker and John Stones absent, a clean sheet appears unlikely for the hosts and returning Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson may play a vital role if his side have hopes of getting a result on Sunday.

Goals haven’t been as free-flowing at the Etihad, with City only finding the net on 15 occasions in the same amount of games. Despite sitting at the top of the goalscoring charts, star striker Erling Haaland – a ? chance to get on the scoresheet – hasn’t been as prolific compared to his freakish tally during the 22-23 season, netting in only 3 Premier League fixtures since November 26th.

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VERDICT

It’s now or never for Arsenal, sitting at the top of the table going into April, with goals flying in left, right, and centre. With Pep Guardiola’s men struggling with major defensive injuries over the International break, I can see goals in this for Arsenal.


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