Will Arsenal adopt a pragmatic approach against free-scoring Manchester City when the Gunners visit the Etihad Stadium on Sunday? Boss Arsene Wenger has suggested this may not be the case.
Arsenal have an excellent record against City recently and that hasn’t come from parking the bus.
Asked about his strategy against the league leaders this Sunday, Wenger implied that he will not set his team up in a particularly defensive manner.
“We’ll of course try to play our game. We’ll not hide,” the Frenchman told reporters at his press conference.
“When we go there, we’ll want to defend well. But we cannot go there and be focused on only defending. We want as well to play and have the ball and create dangerous situations. The best way to defend sometimes is to attack.”
City have won just once against Arsenal in eight fixtures since 2013 (excluding the Community Shield in 2014, also won by Arsenal) although will take encouragement in the fact that the sole win was last season’s equivalent of Sunday’s fixture, at the Etihad.
Arsenal have not come up against a City side as good as this in that time, but given City’s struggles against the Gunners, Wenger’s side have the potential to end City’s unbeaten run or at least come away with a draw.
Guardiola was wary of that at his pre-match presser on Friday afternoon, noting how Arsenal rested their main players in the Europa League on Thursday, one day after City had an intense, challenging game against Napoli in the Champions League.
“Against Arsenal, it is complicated. Hopefully, we will have recovered well from Napoli and will put in a performance for our fans,” Pep said today.
“We need our fans support on Sunday. We will lack a bit of energy, which is normal for the Champions League.”
Sergio Aguero became Manchester City’s all-time record goalscorer with his goal against Napoli.
The City Store has celebrated his achievement by releasing a new range! Check it out!