Home / EPL / Match Preview: Arsenal vs Manchester City


Ah, what a difference a sending off can make. In the 5th minute of October’s clash between the two EPL title contenders at the Eastlands, the inexperienced Dedryck Boyata received a red card for taking away a goal scoring chance from Gunner striker Marouane Chamakh. From then on, it was all Arsenal, who cruised to a 3-0 win which arguably could have been worse had Cesc Fabregas been more clinical in his missed penalty. Arsenal held a 65-35 advantage in possession and City never really looked to threaten. I don’t see a red card plaguing this contest, luckily, and we should expect a high octane, entertaining match at the Emirates.

Arsenal come in off a rousing and surprisingly dominant effort away to Birmingham City in a 3-0 romp with some gorgeous open play while Manchester City are riding a 3-game winning streak and are coming off a 1-0 nail-biter versus the stubborn Ian Holloway-led Blackpool. Arsenal should be favored at home, however, as City have not won away to Arsenal in over three decades. Carlos Tevez will be looking to turn the tides around for City, as their talismanic, if not whiny leader, constantly guides the team on the field with a work-horse like attitude, despite his homesickness affecting him all campaign long. Roberto Mancini will rely on Tevez more than ever, with attacking options David Silva, Mario Balotelli, and even outcast Emmanuel Adebayor all sidelined for the fixture. The counter-attacking style of City and Arsenal’s home woes this season don’t necessarily bode well for Arsene Wenger and company, however. The two center backs, whoever they be (pray Arsenal fans, it’s not Squillaci), will be thoroughly tested by the clinical nature of Tevez. Expect to see Jo and either James Milner or Adam Johnson to be paired with Tevez up to cause nervous for the Gunner defense all game long.

In the end, this fixture means a lot for both teams. Roberto Mancini has been under immense pressure to deliver after spending an obscene transfer kitty during the summer window and for the most part has delivered to the Eastlands faithful. I think the difference in this game will be in the wide play of and incisiveness of the in-form Samir Nasri. He has been the catalyst for Arsenal’s free-flowing and creative movement throughout the season and I think he makes a difference in this tie, again. If Nasri can get past the deadliness of Nigel De Jong’s feet and avoid injury, expect the Gunners to edge out City. Nasri strikes first, Tevez bags one back quickly, and Robin Van Persie gets a second-half winner. More pressure arrives on Roberto Mancini to gain striking reinforcements for Tevez and the boys in the Manchester City jersey, such as Edin Dzeko

Arsenal win 2-1 over City.


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