Manchester City have to win at the Emirates in order to keep Manchester United in their sights, yet their awful record away at Arsenal suggests Sir Alex Ferguson will be smiling come the final whistle in north London.
Despite their unimaginable wealth (in both a fiscal and a talent sense) City have not managed as much as a goal in the Gunners’ back yard since 2007 and have to go back a staggering 37 years for their last victory there. Their 6/4 favouritism then, may seem somewhat unjust.
It’s fair to say that Arsenal’s performances have fallen short of expectations this season but City haven’t exactly set the world alight either and, while they’ve won three on the spin, bagging 10 goals in the process, you need only look as far as their hapless Boxing Day showing at Sunderland for a reason to back the hosts at 17/10.
This Wearside setback represented the fourth away game in seven which Roberto Mancini’s men have failed to trouble the scorers and, although they managed to bag four at Norwich on their last road trip, they saw three fly in at the other end.
Should they set up with a similarly expansive style again the pace of a revitalised Theo Walcott will put them to the sword. He can backed at 6/1 to break the deadlock in this clash, while 50/1 is on offer for the former Southampton trainee to net a treble.
In spite of City’s apparent inability to find the net in N5, should they attack the Arsenal back line in numbers it’s very difficult to envisage how they cannot reap a reward or two.
Edin Dzeko netted twice inside the opening five minutes at Norwich and he possesses the sort of physicality that gives Gunners’ defenders nightmares. At 7/4, the in-form Bosnian looks a good shout to bag at any time and, akin to Walcott, is a 6/1 shot to open the scoring.
However, if you’re of the opinion that City’s dry spell at Arsenal will continue, you’ll be very tempted by the 6/5 that says only one or neither team will find the back of the net in this clash.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date