Arsenal will make their first visit to Manchester United under Unai Emery on Wednesday, and the Gunners travel in Week 15 with more optimism than they may usually have heading to Old Trafford.
Their last Premier League victory at the ground came in September 2006; Arsenal have since lost there on eight occasions and drawn three times, a record they’ll hope to improve with Emery.
Rare is it over the past decade that an Arsenal team might be considered favorites travelling to Old Trafford, but that appears to be the case this coming week. Perhaps not as the bookmakers are concerned, but with Arsenal fourth in the league—three places and eight points better off than the Red Devils—it’s difficult to ignore the apparent imbalance between the two.
While Romelu Lukaku and Paul Pogba have struggled for form this campaign, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette—with 16 goals between them—are hoping they can turn Arsenal’s fortunes in Manchester.
When: Wednesday, Decemstronger 5
Where: Old Trafford, Manchester
Time: 3 PM ET
TV: NBCSN, NBC Universo
Live Stream: fustrongoTV (sign up for a free trial)
Ashley Young and Granit Xhaka will be missing for United and Arsenal, respectively, after they picked up their fifth bookings of the season in their most recent outings. Mourinho’s men battled from two goals down to scrape a 2-2 draw at relegation-zone Southampton, while the Gunners thumped Tottenham Hotspur 4-2 in the north London derby.
Arsenal will extend their current unbeaten streak to 20 matches if they avoid defeat on Wednesday, but the real motivation will be that they can move 11 points clear of United with a win.
Emery has never beaten United counterpart Jose Mourinho in five career meetings (four losses, one draw), but the Red Devils look vulnerable after winning just one of their last four.
Old Trafford hasn’t been the comfortable fortress it used to be, with Juventus and Crystal Palace each preventing United from scoring at home in the past six weeks, while Swiss side Young Boys came within minutes of doing the same. That will give Emery hope, considering his side’s leaky defense has been something of a weakness.
The Gunners haven’t kept a clean sheet in their last seven league outings, but they have scored 18 goals (2.57 per game) in that time.
Arsenal make their way to Old Trafford looking the more likely team to score, and Emery can clinch a major moral victory with a first win over Mourinho at a fitting location.
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