It might not be the last game of the Premier League season but Manchester City and Arsenal could play a part in who goes on to win the title at the end of the season.
The Cityzens host the Gunners on Wednesday at Etihad Stadium hoping they can close the gap between themselves and Mikel Arteta’s side.
Pep Guardiola’s men defeated Sheffield United 3-0 to advance to the FA Cup final over the weekend after Arsenal dropped points again in the title battle in a 3-3 draw with Southampton.
Man City, who are still fighting on three fronts as their end-of-season powerhouse crushes every rival in their path, may formally take control of the Premier League title race on Wednesday night when both clubs take to the Etihad Stadium with their fate in their own hands.
Unbeaten in 16 consecutive matches in all competitions – winning 13 of them – a ruthless Manchester City welcome Arsenal, who have strung together a six-game winning streak in the Premier League, while keeping just two clean sheets in their last ten top-flight games, offering their visitors a glimmer of hope.
Guardiola’s side, on the other hand, has played 12 games at the Etihad in 2023 and has won all of them, scoring at least two goals in every game except a 1-0 FA Cup win against Arsenal, who could not have picked a better time to end their long-running hoodoo against Arteta’s previous club.
Arsenal showed signs of weakness in 2-2 draws with West Ham United and Liverpool, allowing successive two-goal leads to slip for the first time in Premier League history, and present defensive worries added to the woes when Southampton visited the Emirates on Friday.
With Chelsea and Newcastle United—who just destroyed Tottenham Hotspur 6-1—coming up in the next few weeks, Arteta will have to work extra hard to find a solution to Arsenal’s woes. His team has gone six games without recording a clean sheet since a 3-0 victory at Fulham last month.
However, with 36 points from 16 games on the road and a joint-low 13 goals conceded, Arsenal are officially currently the Premier League’s best away team. They have also scored at least twice in each of their past eight games in the top tier, whether they are playing at home or away.
Manchester City win
Saliba is so important to Arsenal's defensive and offensive strategies that without him, things might quickly turn ugly for the Gunners on Wednesday night. A Man City team that just cannot stop scoring - or winning - at home should cruise to a comfortable victory to take a huge step towards dethroning their capital counterparts, but the return of Xhaka will at least mean that Arsenal's midfield should not get bypassed in the manner in which it did against Southampton.