Arsenal V Manchester City
Sunday 23rd April 2017
16:00 Kick Off Live on BT Sport 1
Arsenal have met Man City no fewer than 190 previous times, as you would expect it is the Gunners who have an impressive record winning 95 times, Man City have managed 50 wins and they have drawn 45 times.
They have met twice already this season, in December it was a 2-1 win to City at the Etihad and more recently earlier this month it was a much closer affair. Leroy Sane put City ahead after just 5 minutes but Theo Walcott grabbed an equaliser on the 40th minute only for Aguero to restore City’s lead just a minute later. In the 2nd half Shkodran Mustafi grabbed Arsenal’s second equaliser and the match ended honours even at 2-2.
“It’s an opportunity to win a trophy this season. What I expect when we go into a semi final is to reach the final.” Arsene Wenger
Arsenal have not been in the greatest form of late winning 3 drawing 1 and losing 2. Last time out they did manage a 2-1 away win at the Riverside Stadium against a solid Middlesbrough side.
Man City have been in even worse form than Arsenal, they have won 2, drawn 2 and lost 2 of their last 6. They have won their last 2 in a row including a big 3-0 away win at St Mary’s against Southampton.
This semi final will be a welcome distraction for City following there recent push for a top 4 finish. For Arsenal it is a chance for fans to have something to finally cheer following their terrible form in the league.
Arsenal are missing a lot of first team players going into this, they are expected to be without Shkodran Mustafi, Danny Welbeck, Lucas Perez, David Ospina and Santi Cazorla.
John Stones is out with a muscle problem and City are still without Ilkay Gundogan but surprisingly Gabriel Jesus may make the squad having returned to training only 10 weeks after breaking his foot.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger said “It’s an opportunity to win a trophy this season. What I expect when we go into a semi final is to reach the final. It is a special experience and, for us, I think we are focused and highly motivated”.
City boss Pep Guardiola used his press conference to speak about the miraculous recovery by striker Gabriel Jesus: “He is really much better. Today he will take part in the training with us and he is coming back happy, we are so happy to have him back”.
Arsenal have the opportunity to equal a record in this game, if they keep a clean sheet it would be their 4th consecutive in the FA Cup which would equal that record.
Sergio Aguero has scored 13 goals in 14 appearances in the FA Cup, 4 of which have come this season.
The Bookies have City as favourites and you can back them @ 10/11 with a few companies including Ladbrokes. The draw is @ 3/1 and Arsenal are @ 10/3 with Marathon Bet.
I think both sides are very even at the moment so there is value in the 10/3 for Arsenal, plus I would love to see a North London derby in the final.