Published: Sun, August 12, 2018
Culture&Arts | By Dora Pope

Same old City too strong for new look Arsenal

Same old City too strong for new look Arsenal

The Argentine came up against the Gunners on three occasions last season and directly contributed to a goal in each of those, registering one assist and scoring twice himself - including once in the EFL Cup final.

Emery has had plenty of work to be getting on with. Arsenal were given a hiding in this fixture a few months back, losing 3-0 on an absolutely freezing night in front of a paltry crowd that pretty much summed up where they were back then. John Stones and Kyle Walker lines-up in defence along with Benjamin Mendy.

That coupled with their exceptional midfield and options in forward areas mean they'll be favourites again this season.

Pep Guardiola snapped up Riyad Mahrez from Leicester City in the summer and he will start out wide.

The France worldwide skippered the Gunners last term in the prolonged absence of Per Mertesacker, who has since retired from playing and taking up a coaching position. "Now, when I say something to them, they know exactly what we have to do", Guardiola's words were refreshing, the Spaniard once again demonstrating why his unique outlook towards the game plays such a prominent role in him being a serial victor.

City have great depth, though, and the Gunners could be in for a hard afternoon as they try to welcome their new era in with a win on Sunday.

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Another starter who might not make the XI is Aaron Ramsey who suffered a calf injury in pre-season.

He has returned to training this week but it's unclear as to whether he'll start the match or be among the substitutes.

Things got worse for Emery when Ainsley Maitland-Niles - only starting at left-back due to injuries to Nacho Monreal and Sead Kolasinac - limped off to be replaced by another newcomer in Stephan Lichtsteiner. He was brilliant for BVB in Germany and with him the absence of Laurent Koscielny, who is a long-term absentee with an Achilles trouble.

Sokratis Papastathopoulos is an upgrade on the team's previous defenders but Shkodran Mustafi remains a concern.

Playmaker Kevin de Bruyne and striker Gabriel Jesus were also on the bench following their World Cup exploits with Belgium and Brazil respectively, an ominous warning to the rest of the division of the depth of superstars vying for a place in City's record-breaking squad.

Manchester City played with the same level of control and authority as last season, dominating possession throughout the game, pressing well and involving their forwards regularly.

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