After a disastrous 3-match start to the 2017-18 Premier League season, Arsenal seemed to have got their act together and in the last couple of months beginning September, the Gunners have been bettered in just one of out of their 12 outings in all forms of competition. Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez, both of whom are staring at uncertain futures at the Emirates have seemed to suddenly found form and are combining brilliantly with the likes of Alexandre Lacazette and Bosnian wonder-boy Sead Kolasinac. Arsenal’s mediocre showing in away games have been a talking point, but the thumping 2-5 win at Goodison Park last forthnight seemed to have silenced critics for the moment. That was Arsenal playing like the old – magical football at its best. Something of that kind would be expected of coach Arsene Wenger’s boys at the Etihad Stadium on November 5 when they run into hot title contenders Manchester City.
Pep Guardiola’s City have shown no signs of letting up as far as goal-getting is concerned. Monday’s away win over Swansea City was their 8th on the trot taking their tally of goals scored in the ongoing Premier League season to a whopping 35 (12 more than 2nd placed Manchester United) from just 10 games. More and more players are joining the top slot for highest goal-scorer’s tag at the club, the latest entrant being 21-year old German forward Leroy Sane equalling Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus’s tally of eight goals apiece. The Arsenal back-line of Laurent Koscielny, Pert Mertesacker and Nacho Monreal will have their jobs cut out against an attack being touted as being among the best in the world in their current form.
Star Argentine striker Aguero was rested for the Swansea City clash, preserved for the all-important UEFA Champions League fixture on Wednesday away in Italy against Serie A leaders Napoli. But even with the Argentine around, the City attack of Sane, Jesus, Raheem Sterling back by the absolutely brilliant Kevin de Bruyne and David Silva on the wings could be a real handful. Even the best show from the Gunnerss may not suffice in holding a rampant City back and to assume that Pep Guardiola’s boys would be a little jaded from their hard trip back from Naples would be a seriuos mistake on Arsene Wenger’s part.
Arsenal host Red Star Belgrade in a comparatively less tougher continental outing in a Europa League Group clash at the Emirates on Thursday. A win in that game (that would keep them at the top in the cluster) would be a great morale-booster for the Gunnners going into the weekend Premier League clash at the Etihad.
Arsenal’s last trip to the Etihad stadium had ended in a 1-2 defeat, but quite amazingly that’s the only time the Gunners have lost in their previous nine encounters with City since 2014 of which four have been wins.
Bookmakers have ignored history and factored in the present forms of the teams in wagering for a Manchester City win in the November 5th clash. The odds suggest Pep Guardiola’s boys as clear favourites.
Recommended Tip: Man City to WIN, best odds 1.5 @ Ladbrokes
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