The game of the weekend sees a rivalry renewed as Arsenal welcome old-time foes Manchester United to the Emirates Stadium on Sunday (16.30).
Neither side have had an ideal start to the season, but the Gunners are unbeaten, and will be eager to bounce back from a disappointing draw with Fulham last weekend.
United’s performances have attracted criticism, and they come into this match with serious personnel issues with defenders Tyrell Malacia, Luke Shaw and Raphael Varane all out injured and Mason Mount also set to miss the trip to the Emirates.
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Arsenal to win
I think Arsenal should be confident of picking up a vital three points here.
Mikel Arteta’s side have won seven of their previous 11 home league games and are also unbeaten in the past four meetings between the sides at the Emirates, winning three of them including an impressive an 3-2 triumph last season.
United overcame a slow start against Nottingham Forest last time out – conceding two goals in under five minutes – but looked far from convincing, and I can see them being all over the place at the back here, particularly with the injuries to Raphael Varane and Luke Shaw. I’d expect Arsenal to take advantage of that.
Both teams to score
That being said, I think United have enough quality to trouble Arsenal’s defence here.
The Gunners have looked far from confident at the back themselves, conceding early and late goals in a 2-2 draw against Fulham.
Marcus Rashford was instrumental in United’s comeback against Forest after playing in his preferred position out wide, and if he is able to again here, I can see him causing Arsenal some problems. The England international scored a brilliant goal in this fixture last season, and he has the quality to produce something similar again.
Both Arsenal and Manchester United have seen both teams score in two of their three matches so far, and United have actually created the joint-most amount of big chances so far this season.
Diogo Dalot to be carded
With United’s injury list mounting, Dalot may be asked to fill in at left-back as he did against Forest last week.
The 24-year-old committed three fouls against Forest as he came up against Brennan Johnson. While Johnson is a bright talent, Bukayo Saka is another step up for Dalot, and I can see him struggling to contain the England international.
Even in his natural position of right-back, Dalot was shown six yellow cards in 24 Premier League games last term so it would be no surprise to see him booked against Arsenal as he comes up against one of the brightest wingers in Europe.