Arsenal vs. Man City
Venue: Emirates Stadium
Kick off: 1:30PM
Manchester City will be looking to record their 11th Premier League victory in a row when they head to the Emirates Stadium this afternoon to take on Arsenal.
The Citizens are currently eight points clear of second-placed Chelsea at the top of the table, while Arsenal occupy fourth position, four points clear of fifth-placed West Ham United.
Arsenal faced plenty of criticism in the opening months of the 2021-22 campaign, but it has been a positive few weeks for the Gunners, who have won each of their last five matches in all competitions, including four straight Premier League victories over Southampton, West Ham, Leeds United and Norwich City.
Mikel Arteta’s side have actually scored 14 times in their last three matches, having thumped Sunderland 5-1 in the EFL Cup on December 21 before putting five goals past Norwich in the league on Boxing Day.
The Gunners had been due to take on Wolverhampton Wanderers in the league on December 28, but the match had to be postponed due to coronavirus issues in the Wolves camp.
Nevertheless, the North London club have still played 19 Premier League matches during the 2021-22 campaign.
A record of 11 wins, two draws and six defeats has brought them 35 points, which is enough for fourth position, four points clear of fifth-placed West Ham, but Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United will also both believe that they are firmly in the top-four race at this stage of the campaign.
There will be no Arteta on the touchline for this match, with the Spaniard testing positive for coronavirus, and there has allegedly been an outbreak among the staff at the club.
Man City, meanwhile, will enter this weekend’s contest off the back of a 1-0 win over Brentford on Wednesday night, with Phil Foden scoring the only goal of the contest against Thomas Frank’s side.
The Citizens have now been victorious in each of their last 10 league matches, which has seen them rise to the top of the table, collecting 50 points from their opening 20 matches of the 2021-22 campaign.
Pep Guardiola’s side are eight points clear of second-placed Chelsea and nine clear of third-placed Liverpool, and second will welcome third in the league on Sunday, so Man City could be even further clear at the summit heading into the next set of fixtures in England’s top flight.
The reigning English champions will take on Swindon Town in the FA Cup on January 7 before hosting Chelsea in the league on January 15, and there is a danger that they could start to run away at the summit.
Man City have won 11 of their last 12 matches against Arsenal in all competitions, including a 5-0 victory in the reverse match at the Etihad Stadium earlier this season, while they have not lost against the Gunners in the Premier League since December 2015.
Arsenal possible XI: Ramsdale, White, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney, Xhaka, Partey, Saka, Odegaard, Smith Rowe, Lacazette.
Man City possible XI: Ederson, Cancelo, Dias, Laporte, Ake, B Silva, Gundogan, De Bruyne, Mahrez, Foden, Sterling.