Arsenal vs Man City Preview & Betting Tips: Saka Punch

Bukayo SakaArsenal’s assault on the top of the Premier League table continues on Sunday (4.30pm) in front of a home crowd, as they take on the Manchester City team that they want to usurp. Can they get the job done? Or will the visitors prove to be too strong? This AFC vs MCFC preview, with EPL game betting tips, answers those questions.

Things had been going rather well for Mikel Arteta’s men, who went into their Wednesday night Champions League fixture off the back of two solid wins, both of which came complete with clean sheets. However, such form paled into insignificance in the French city of Lens as the Gunners found themselves on the wrong end of a 2-1 scoreline, despite going in front thanks to an early Gabriel Jesus strike.

Domestically, AFC have been in solid form and they are yet to lose this season, winning five and drawing two. After seeing Manchester City lose to Wolves last weekend, they may fancy themselves to maintain that unbeaten run too.

As for the visitors, well, MCFC were stunned by a defiant Wolverhampton Wanderers team last time out in the Premier League, though we probably shouldn’t judge them too harshly for that result. They were down to ten men rather early, while they bounced back in rather typical fashion during the week, beating a very good RB Leipzig side away from home, scoring three goals in the process. Guardiola’s men remain the ones to beat in the Premier League, there’s no getting away from that fact.

AFC home comforts will help

This fixture being played at Emirates Stadium is likely to help the hosts, who really have been in impressive attacking form on their own patch this season. It bodes well ahead of a game where scoring goals will be hugely important.

In front of a home crowd, Arteta’s men have scored a healthy total of nine goals, netting two or more in four out of four in the Premier League. Last time out at this venue against the new and improved Spurs team, the Gunners made plenty of offensive headway, which is positive given that they are up against another top-four team here.

The only issue is that the hosts haven’t been too strong at the back, conceding at least once in four out of four. In conceding twice against Tottenham, they didn’t exactly put up a whole lot of resistance, which does not bode well ahead of a game against Man City.

Man City on top here

The Gunners have had little joy against Manchester City in recent times, especially since Guardiola took charge. Sunday’s visitors have won eight of the last nine renewals of this fixture, eight out of eight if you remove the most recent Community Shield. Sunday’s hosts haven’t always gone down without a fight during that time, scoring in four of the last five. Though since the start of 2021, AFC have lost to MCFC by two or more goals on three occasions, which isn’t great.

Home goals on the menu

In the betting, the visitors are obviously favourites, despite their slip-up last weekend, though their favouritism is marginal at present. In fact, anyone who fancies Man City to bounce back will likely hoover up early quotes of 7/5, as such a price on Guardiola’s team winning won’t be available on too many occasions this season. Similarly, anybody who feels that Arsenal have a substantial edge at home will probably be quite happy to take odds of 15/8 on the home win. Personally, neither team appeals as a bet to win this game.

Instead, ‘Arsenal to Score Over 1.5 Goals’ stands out at the odds of 6/4. We know how good Arsenal have been from an offensive point of view, while they have the players to really hurt a Man City team that will leave space in behind.

It is not just that Arsenal have scored plenty of goals at home, their underlying numbers have been great too. They average 2.02 expected goals per 90 minutes at home, which is right up there with the best in the EPL.

We also know that this Man City team is far from infallible in a defensive sense. They have not gone three games in all competitions without a clean sheet, while they have also recorded just one shutout in their last eight (in all competitions). Don’t be surprised if a very strong Arsenal attack makes plenty of headway in this game. At odds of 6/4, this AFC vs MCFC preview is backing them to do just that.

Saka to score

If Arsenal are to get some offensive joy in this fixture, which seems slightly more likely than early odds suggest, then their dynamic wide forward Bukayo Saka is likely to be heavily involved, as he has been all season long. The winger/forward has notched four times in the Premier League so far, often cutting in to devastating effect. He is also not averse to running in behind from a wide starting position, which could prove to be very effective against Manchester City’s high-line.

On top of his four goals, Saka is averaging 0.60 expected goals per 90 minutes, not to mention 2.35 shots. He also has spot-kick duties, which is never a bad thing in this sense, and when we consider that in conjunction with his numbers so far, odds of 3/1 start to look a little generous. So these are our preview’s betting tips for this Arsenal vs Man City EPL game preview: