rsenal welcome Manchester City to the Emirates Stadium on Sunday looking to avoid a 14th consecutive league defeat against the champions.
It’s a remarkable run of dominance for City against who many still believe is their closest challenger to the top-flight crown.
Mikel Arteta has happy with his team’s performance in the same fixture last season, despite losing 3-1 at home, insisting they matched Pep Guardiola’s charges.
But Arsenal need more than that this weekend. Here is where we think the game will be won and lost.
Saliba and Gabriel vs Haaland
Haaland was dominant in the League meetings with Arsenal last season, scoring in both matches.
Pep Guardiola bypassed Arsenal’s press by going direct to the Norwegian in the game at the Etihad to devastating effect, with the Gunners simply unable to handle his physicality. It will be up to centre-backs William Saliba and Gabriel to be wise to the approach on Sunday and stop Haaland from bullying Arsenal again.
Rice vs Man City’s midfield
With Rodri suspended, Kevin De Bruyne injured and Ilkay Gundogan gone, City will have an entirely changed midfield from the last League meeting.
Whoever Guardiola plays in the middle, Declan Rice should be confident of asserting himself on his opposite numbers and running the game. He joined Arsenal to prove himself one as one of the best midfielders in the world. Now is his chance.
Foden vs Zinchenko
Oleksandr Zinchenko is arguably Arsenal’s weak link defensively and he is likely to be up against former team-mate Phil Foden, who has been on dazzling form this season.
What Zinchenko lacks in defensive quality, he more than makes up for in technical quality and his ability to invert into midfield is vital to Arsenal; but on Sunday he will be tasked with preventing Foden from pulling the strings in the final third.