Premier League returns – Manchester City v Arsenal

Live Premier League action should finally return on Wednesday, June 17, as governing bodies have given the green light for a resumption to the 2019/20 season. All games will be played behind closed doors, although some matches will be shown on terrestrial TV for the first time in decades.

A ball has not been kicked in the EPL since March 9 due to the lockdown restrictions imposed across the UK, but on the first evening of football’s return there is a mouth-watering game taking place at the Etihad Stadium, as defending champions Manchester City welcome Arsenal.

The hosts will be strong favourites to win and are currently priced at 1/3 with Betfair, while Arsenal are a 13/2 chance to take the points.

City resume their title pursuit – but hopes had been fading

Man CityManchester City will resume the defence of their title 25 points behind Liverpool, but can close that gap to 22 with a win over the Gunners.

City were beaten 2-0 by neighbours Manchester United when they last appeared in the Premier League, their seventh league defeat of the season, but were 2-0 winners over West Ham when they last played at home.

Their form at the Etihad had been good, winning nine of their 13 league games – losing just twice. This means they have the third best home record in the EPL. However, it is away from home where their title challenge has stalled. Despite having the second-best away record in the league, they have lost five times on the road so will be glad to resume their season on home soil.

Arsenal in transition under Arteta

arsenal fcArsenal said goodbye to Unai Emery at the turn of the year, appointing Mikel Arteta to his first ever head coach role.

The Gunners’ style has certainly changed under the Spaniard and when the season was abruptly brought to a halt, they were enjoying an unbeaten run of form that had seen them win their last three games.

They currently sit down in ninth place, five points off a Europa League place, and eight points off the top four. They have very little room for error if they are to reach the European qualification places, so a visit to the Etihad Stadium to restart their season could not have been much more of a tougher task.

The Gunners have picked up just 14 points on their travels this season and only won twice, but they are unbeaten on the road since November and have drawn their last five games away from the Emirates Stadium.

Head to head record

When the sides met earlier in the season, Manchester City ran out comfortable 3-0 winners in London thanks to goals from Raheem Sterling and a Kevin De Bruyne brace. The last meeting at the Etihad Stadium was in February 2019. Again, City took all three points in a 3-1 victory, with Sergio Aguero grabbing a hattrick for the hosts.

In fact, Arsenal’s last competitive victory over City came back in December 2015, the same year they also recorded their last win at the Etihad Stadium, as Santi Cazorla and Olivier Giroud secured the Gunners a 2-0 win.

Last five game Premier League form

Manchester City​ – LWWLW​
Arsenal ​​- WWWDD