Manchester City host Arsenal in the Premier League on Saturday in a 5:30pm kick-off at the Etihad Stadium.
Here are Brett Curtis’s tips from the evening kickoff.
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The Citizens will be looking to get their league campaign up and running after the 5-2 home loss to Leicester City and 1-1 draw at Leeds United prior to the international break.
Pep Guardiola and his side will have full confidence in doing so having won their last six league meetings against the Gunners.
However, his former assistant manager Mikel Arteta has changed the culture in north London, making them a much tougher side to beat. This was exemplified by the 2-0 win against City in the FA Cup semi-final in July despite only having 29% possession, while they currently occupy fourth place in the table after three wins and a loss.
The bookmakers have made Man City odds-on favourites at 1/2 to make it seven league wins in a row against Arsenal. The draw is 7/2, with an Arsenal win 5/1.
Guardiola confirmed in his pre-match press conference that Kevin De Bruyne will miss the match having sustained an injury in Belgium’s defeat to England on Sunday, which is a massive boost for the visitors. Gabriel Jesus will also remain out, but Sergio Aguero is back in training and may even be fit to start.
Despite a rehabilitation progress picture being shared on social media over the international break, Gabriel Martinelli is unlikely to feature for Arsenal in 2020. Arteta may have Shkodran Mustafi available here after the Germany defender returned to full training, while Thomas Partey could be in line to make his debut for the club after completing his move from Atletico Madrid on deadline day.
England forward Raheem Sterling withdrew from international duty with a knock but should be fine to start this match. He’s 11/10 (Betfair) to score anytime having opened his league account in the draw at Leeds; with three goals in his last four league starts against Arsenal, you wouldn’t bet against him. Should Aguero be fit to start, he’s odds-on at 5/6 (Sky Bet) to return with a goal.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice in the aforementioned FA Cup win against City and is 37/20 (Unibet) to get back to goalscoring ways having blanked in Arsenal’s last three matches. Alexandre Lacazette is 5/2 (Unibet).
Chris Kavanagh officiates this one and the 35-year-old has shown each team one or more yellow card in 12 of his last 17 Premier League matches.
I’ll place Over 0 Cards for each team in my Bet Builder, then, while adding Over 1 Goals for Both Teams Combined, Over 4 Corners for Man City, and Over 0 Corners for Arsenal at odds of 4/5. I can see both teams scoring here but will play safe by backing two goals overall, while City usually rack up the corners at home and it’d be extremely unusual if Arsenal don’t earn themselves at least one despite usually sitting deep against the Big Six under Arteta.
Kavanagh has also shown two penalties in his three games so far this season, making 11/4 (bet365) on City to score a penalty look appealing. The Citizens became the first team in Premier League history to concede three penalties in a match in their last home game against Leicester City, so 6/1 (bet365) on Arsenal scoring one doesn’t look bad either.