Arsenal welcome Manchester City to the Emirates on Sunday on what promises to be an explosive encounter.


The Gunners are in absolute free fall. They have lost four of their last five in the Premier League and currently sit sixth in the table, a full six points off the top four.


Manchester City meanwhile are fairing little better; they are currently third, although they are looking over their shoulders as Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal, who are all hunting them down in pursuit of a top four finish


Classic Encounter

Manchester City v Arsenal  - Premier League

In the reverse fixture in December, Manchester City stole a 2-1 win at the Etihad, thanks to second half goals from Sane and Sterling.


Arsenal started that match like a house on fire, and took the lead courtesy of a fifth minute goal from Theo Walcott. But the Gunners capitulated in the second half and surrendered all the points  following a disappointing collapse.


Key Battle


Yaya Toure vs Mesut Ozil

Manchester City v Arsenal  - Premier League

If Arsenal are to stand any chance of getting something from this weekend, then the much maligned Mesut Ozil must do what he has failed to do throughout his Arsenal career - produce a standout performance against a superior opponent. 


The German has all the tricks and skills needed, but his disappearances are all too frequent when it truly counts. But if he can produce a moment of magic, then the Gunners stand a real chance.


The man tasked with preventing this will be Yaya Toure. Welcomed back into the Manchester City flock in November after a dispute between his agent and Guardiola, the big Ivorian has rekindled some of the form that he displayed in the Citizens 2011/12 campaign. This weekend, he will seek to bully Ozil in an attempt to restrict him from influencing the game.


Team News

FBL-WC-2018-CHI-TRAINING

For the Gunners, the main concern lies with Alexis Sanchez. The Chilean talisman has been through a 7,000 mile round trip over the past two weeks, as he represented his country in their World Cup qualifiers. The extensive travel may make him unavailable. Elsewhere, Petr Cech is out wth a calf problem, as is Lucas Perez who has suffered a thigh strain.


For City, Kevin de Bruyne is the only recent injury woe that Guardiola must contend with. The Belgian playmaker picked up a groin injury during the break and is a doubt. Ilkay Gundogan and Gabriel Jesus are both long-term absentees, with both likely to miss the remainder of the campaign.


Prediction

Arsenal v Manchester City - Premier League

Their recent run of horrendous form means that Arsenal are in a do-or-die stage of their campaign. The Gunners often find a way to turn things around at this time of year, and in a now-or-never moment for Arsene Wenger, don't be surprised if they get something from this game


Arsenal 1-1 Manchester City