This week’s standout Premier League fixture comes from the Etihad as giants Manchester City and Arsenal collide in this mouth-watering Super Sunday showdown.
Both teams will be eager to fire a warning shot to their rivals with an important victory here and that should make for a passion-fuelled contest.
Prepare yourselves for a classic.
Manuel Pellegrini will be thrilled to have star man Sergio Aguero back in the action and the Citizens will be looking to their top scorer to inspire a crucial triumph against the Gunners, especially as midfielder Yaya Toure is away at the African Cup of Nations.
The Citizens have actually coped OK during Aguero’s absence, scoring plenty of goals, but his return will provide a huge lift around the club. That extra excitement will additionally be palpable in the stands and that should make for a cracking atmosphere.
In addition to Aguero, the champions also welcome back club captain Vincent Kompany to their defence and that will be a huge relief as they look to nullify the danger of Alexis Sanchez and co. The hosts have failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their past five matches and Joe Hart will be hoping that his skipper can inspire a far more assured defensive display.
City won last year’s corresponding fixture via a 6-3 scoreline; we could be in for another thriller here.
Arsenal Gunning To Give Champions League Hopes A Boost
While the Gunners will be eager to make the most of City’s vulnerability, it is worth noting that Arsene Wenger will have to contend with a long list of injuries ahead of the trip to Manchester.
Jack Wilshere, Danny Welbeck and Mathieu Debucy are just three of the names currently on Arsneal’s list of crocked stars and that could be hugely detrimental to their chances. However, the Gunners will be hopeful that star man Sanchez can drag the visitors to a famous victory.
Arsenal will take confidence from their performance in the 2-2 home draw earlier this season but the Etihad hasn’t been the happiest hunting ground for the north Londoners in recent years and will naturally enter this clash as the overwhelming underdogs. They do boast the tools needed to hurt the hosts, but home advantage should give City the impetus.
Three points could have a huge impact on Arsenal’s bid to secure Champions League football next term but Wenger would probably settle for a point.
Manchester City V Arsenal Betting
Unsurprisingly, the champions enter Sunday’s showdown as the odds on favourites with Bet365 pricing the hosts at 4/5. Meanwhile, the visitors can be backed at 10/3, while the draw is available at 11/4.
Arsenal are in great form at the Emirates but have slipped up on the road far too often this season and could be in for another tough afternoon at the Etihad.
However, Wenger’s men do tend to score and will be eager to cause problems for a potentially vulnerable home defence. We’re backing the Gunners to score but don’t think they’ll secure any points.
BTTS & Manchester City to win @ 11/5 with William Hill
The Citizens have netted 10 goals over the course of their past four home games and the return of Aguero could be significant in firing them to further success here.
City’s top scorer has hit 14 goals already this season and should link up well with the likes of Samir Nasri and James Milner as the hosts look to thrive. The champions have often notched plenty of goals in big Premier League home games and that could be the case again here.
Manchester City to score over 2.5 goals @ 9/4 with Coral