Arsenal are preparing for what could be their biggest game of the Premier League season, as they travel to Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium..
The Gunners currently lead their rivals by five points, despite having played two more games at this point in the season.
The head-to-head means that things remain in the hands of both teams, but the outcome of the clash could completely change the course of the title race. A win for City would reduce the gap to two points with two games remaining to leapfrog into first place, whereas a win for Arsenal would create an eight-point gap and a healthy margin heading into the final stretch..
When asked if confidence and psychology played a role in the game, Mikel Arteta said, “It plays a huge part.” “Clearly, the belief exists. When I look at how they trained, how they reacted afterwards, the atmosphere in the locker room, and how they’ve been defending each other at all times…
We really want it, and we’ll show it again tomorrow night. Then you must deliver at the right time, with the right performance, and it must be flawless because that is what this final level requires – absolute perfection in every single ball.”
A lot of attention has been focused on how Arsenal can counter Manchester City’s offensive pressure, especially given Erling Haaland’s goal scoring exploits this season. Arteta, on the other hand, may be armed with a secret weapon of his own.
Former Arsenal star Martin Keown believes that City defender Nathan Ake’s injury could play a significant role in the Gunners’ game, writing in the Daily Mail: “To understand how unpredictable Guardiola is as a tactician, look no further than the last time these teams met in a 3-1 Premier League win for City in February.”
“Bernardo Silva started at left back but ended up on the right wing!” That was a tall order for Silva, who had to deal with Arsenal’s two most dangerous players, Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard, while switching between defense and midfield. City improved after Guardiola made a mid-match switch, moving Nathan Ake to left back.
“Ake slapped Saka with handcuffs that day, just like he did in City’s FA Cup win a month earlier.” The fact that Ake is injured is a huge setback for City, but it’s good news for Saka.”
It could be the difference in the game if Saka is allowed to wreak havoc in the attacking phases.
It remains to be seen whether this will be enough for Arsenal in their huge clash at the Etihad.
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