Giants clash at Old Trafford

Last updated: December 4, 2018 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Wednesday, 20:00
Venue: Old Trafford
Coverage: Sky Sports
Home Form: WLDWD
Away Form: DDWWW
Last Meeting: Man United 2– 1 Arsenal
Competition: EPL

One of the highlights of the football calendar is the clash between two of the most successful teams in the modern era, Manchester United and Arsenal. Manchester United’s manager was quoted as saying his 7th placed team need a miracle to reach the top four while Arsenal are looking to continue their great form.

In recent history this has been a kind fixture for the home side. Manchester United are unbeaten in the last 11 Premier League matches against Arsenal at home dating back to the 1 – 0 loss back in September 2006. The Red Devils won both the home and away fixture in last season’s encounters and have a chance to make it three wins in a row for the first time since November 2012.

Manchester United will have the home advantage but that hasn’t been much of a bonus this year with some of the team’s best performances coming away from Old Trafford. The team has good attacking options but have not been lethal upfront, with Romelu Lukaku scoring his first goal after eleven games. Their best player and the team’s top scorer is Antony Martial who came off the bench in their last outing against Southampton. Attacking wise, the stage could be set for Marcus Rashford who used this fixture in the past to become a United mainstay with two goals in the 3 – 2 win against Arsenal in the Louis Van Gaal era.

Jose Mourinho has lots to worry about in his defensive line-up with captain Ashley Young suspended, which is likely to hand Diogo Dalot his full debut. Chris Smalling has an ankle injury while Eric Bailly has a back injury. Victor Lindeloef and Alexis Sanchez both have a thigh injury with Luke Shaw, Valencia, and Darmian suffering from knocks but who could still feature.

Arsenal are back to winning ways with three wins in a row. They will be hoping to extend their unbeaten run to thirteen. They come to this fixture on the back of an iconic comeback in the North London derby where they humiliated Tottenham 4 – 2 at their home ground. The win was vital, keeping Unai Emery’s team up in their favourite fourth spot, level on points with Spurs but ahead of them on goal difference. Even at this stage of the season a win at Old Trafford could be crucial if Arsenal have any realistic title aspirations. Despite the best football for a while from Arsenal, they are still eight points adrift from the leaders Manchester City.

The Gunners have been on their best form for years, inspired by the best attacking striking duo in Alexandra Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. They will be lacking the services of Granit Xhaka who is suspended, Nacho Monreal with a hamstring and Koscielny still out on a long-term injury. Captain Mesut Ozil who missed the derby over the weekend could feature as he recovers from a back injury. One to watch is the emergence of Torreira who has drawn comparisons with Ngolo Kante, with some suggesting he could become even be better than the Chelsea player.

Team News

Potential United central defenders Smalling, Bailly, and United’s Player of the Month Lindeloef, are all doubtful with only Jones available.

Man United have managed just one clean sheet and are on a three-match winless streak in the Premier League.

Ozil is still doubtful after missing the North London derby last weekend.

Aubameyang is the League top scorer with 10 goals while Aaron Ramsey leads the assist chart with six.

Expected Line-Ups:

Manchester United (4-3-3): De Gea, Dalot, McTominay, Jones, Shaw, Matic, Herrera, Mata, Pogba, Martial, Lukaku
Subs: Romero, Pereira, Young, Fred, Rojo, Fellaini, Dalot, Lingard
Injured: Lindeloef, Sanchez, Bailly
Doubtful: Smalling, Shaw
Not available: Young
Arsenal (3-4-2-1): Leno, Bellerini, Mustafi, Sokratis, Holding, Kolasnic, Torreira, Xhaka, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang, Lacazette
Subs: Cech, Lichtsteiner, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Welbeck, Iwobi, Maitland-Niles
Injured: Koscielny, Monreal, Welbeck
Doubtful: Ozil
Not available:

So Far This Season

. . .
Manchester United This Season Arsenal This Season
7th League Position 4th
6 (3) Wins (away) 9 (4)
2 – 0 v Burnley Biggest Win 5 – 1 v Fulham
3 (2) Draws (away) 3 (1)
0 – 3 Spurs Biggest Defeat 0 – 2 v Man City
Martial (6) Top Goal Scorer Aubameyang (10)
Y29, R2 Discipline Y24, R0
2 Failures to Score 1
14.3% Clean Sheets 14.3%
85.7% Both Teams to Score Games 85.7%
78.6% Over 2.5 Goals 64.3%
21.4% Under 2.5 Goals 35.7%
  • Aaron Ramsey is top of the assist charts (6) with Hector Bellerini following closely with four.
  • Arsenal have not won at Old Trafford for eleven straight games. They have a better chance to make up for the poor record that taints their performance in the derby.
  • United have a dominant record winning 24 matches of the 50 direct matches between the two sides to Arsenal’s 13 wins and 13 games ending as a draw.
  • Both teams have the potential to be lethal in front of goal and have poor defensive records with two clean sheets apiece in 14 matches each, this promises to be an entertaining match with plenty of goals.

Head to Head

Last 5 meetings between the two sides
Date Competition Game Result First Goal-scorer
29/04/2018 EPL Man United 2 – 1 Arsenal Pogba 16′
02/12/2017 EPL Arsenal 1 – 3 Man United Valencia 4′
07/05/2017 EPL Arsenal 2 – 0 Man United Xhaka 54′
19/11/2016 EPL Man United 1 – 1 Arsenal Mata 68’
28/02/2016 EPL Man United 3 – 2 Arsenal Rashford 29’

Conclusion & Betting Tips

Arsenal are in their best form under the revolution of Unai Emery while Man United are struggling in recent matches. This season under Jose, United have produced a stunning result and then gone on a poor run, no-one would be surprised to see that continue here.

That said, goals win games and when you compare Aubameyang and Lacazette to Martial and Lukaku it’s hard to see past an Arsenal win here. Find the best odds at Betway.