On Saturday, Jose Mourinho will resume his fierce rivalry with Arsene Wenger, as his Manchester United side look to close a six-point gap between themselves in sixth and the fourth placed Gunners.
Given the inconsistency shown by United in recent weeks, and the fact that Arsenal remain unbeaten since losing at home to Liverpool on the opening day of the season, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the away side favoured by punters on Spiffx.
However, it was a different story just over a year ago, as Louis Van Gaal’s side attracted 35.71% of pre-play bets for the league match at the Emirates. The visitors arrived in North London on top of the Premier League, having taken 16 points from their first seven matches.
They were subsequently blown away by a rampant Alexis Sanchez, who scored twice in the first 20 minutes, either side of a well taken goal by Mesut Ozil. The Chilean forward was too strong for Matteo Darmian, who is likely to start again this weekend in place of the injured Antonio Valencia. Meanwhile, the in-form Sanchez has declared himself fit to start after overcoming a minor hamstring injury.
By contrast, Arsenal arrived at Old Trafford in February just two points behind league leaders Leicester City, and 10 points ahead of fifth placed United. The home side were only backed by 20% of punters on Spiffx, as they fielded a back four including Michael Carrick and Guillermo Varela.
United fans will be hoping that Saturday’s makeshift defence can produce a similarly valiant performance nine months on from that surprise 3-2 victory. Chris Smalling will be sidelined with a broken toe, while Eric Bailly is still out with the knee ligament injury he picked up at Chelsea.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s suspension should mean that Marcus Rashford gets an opportunity to start the match through the middle. The teenager made his Premier League debut in this fixture last season, scoring twice in the first half, before providing a second half assist for Ander Herrera.
This is the info for this week:
Arsenal v Manchester United – 4th October 2015
Result: 3 – 0
- Arsenal – 21.43%
- Draw – 42.86%
- Manchester United – 35.71%
Manchester United v Arsenal – 28th February 2016
Result: 3 – 2
- Manchester United – 20%
- Draw – 50%
- Arsenal – 30%