Arsenal forward Theo Walcott will be hoping he starts in today’s FA Cup semi-final match against Manchester City given his impressive record in past meetings, let alone this competition this season. The English international has been a thorn in the City side previously due to his excessive pace on the counter to catch the Sky Blues’ defence cold, and he could well strike again given how ruthless he’s been in the FA Cup so far.
Arsenal travel to Wembley to face Manchester City in the FA Cup semi-final this afternoon, and are hoping they can continue their fine head-to-head record to seal their place in the competition’s final for the third season out of four. The Gunners have recently ended their poor run of form in the Premier League and are desperate for silverware which could see them get a result.
Monday’s win over Middlesbrough sees Arsenal with some momentum going into today’s encounter, although City boast consecutive victories ahead of the meeting. However, the Sky Blues have failed to win three of their last four games away from the Etihad Stadium so Arsenal aren’t major underdogs by any means.
Arsenal may be 90 minutes away from reaching their third FA Cup final in four seasons with a semi-final clash to come against Manchester City, but the Gunners are still keeping an eye on the Premier League top-four and will be hoping Burnley and Crystal Palace can do them a favour in their respective games against Manchester United (5th) and Liverpool (3rd), to give them hope of gaining ground.
This afternoon’s FA Cup semi-final clash against Manchester City will be the 10th time Arsenal and the Citizens have met in a competitive fixture since 2013, but how have the last nine meetings gone between the two sides?
Previous nine head-to-heads between Arsenal and Manchester City
in all competitions
(2/4/17) Premier League: Arsenal 2-2 Manchester City
(18/12/16) Premier League: Manchester City 2-1 Arsenal
(8/5/16) Premier League: Manchester City 2-2 Arsenal
(21/12/15) Premier League: Arsenal 2-1 Manchester City
(18/1/15) Premier League: Manchester City 0-2 Arsenal
(13/9/14) Premier League: Arsenal 2-2 Manchester City
(10/8/14) Community Shield: Arsenal 3-0 Manchester City
(29/3/14) Premier League: Arsenal 1-1 Manchester City
(14/12/13) Premier League: Manchester City 6-3 Arsenal
Having made six appearances in all competitions for Arsenal in the last seven weeks, midfielder Aaron Ramsey has become an important player for manager Arsene Wenger and is likely to keep his place in the engine room for this afternoon’s FA Cup semi-final clash with Manchester City as a result.
The Welsh international has endured a stop-start season due to injury and inconsistent form, but made his first Premier League start for a month in Monday’s 2-1 win over Middlesbrough and was singled out for praise by Wenger in the build-up to this weekend’s match at Wembley.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger revealed he could stick with a 3-5-2 formation ahead of this afternoon’s FA Cup semi-final clash with Manchester City, after the side stopped the rot in the Premier League with a win against Middlesbrough while adopting a three-man defence in the process.
“It is an option, yes. But what will I do? You will understand that I won’t tell you now. It was more destined to give us a bit more defensive solidity because recently away from home we conceded too many goals. I think the definition of a good football player is that he is adaptable to any situation,” said Wenger.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger gave an injury update on his six first-team players currently sidelined. Colombian goalkeeper David Ospina remains sidelined with a back injury. “Ospina is out. It is a longer-term injury. Ospina could be back in 10 days,” said the Gunners boss.
In defence, World Cup winner and £32M summer-signing Shkodran Mustafi has been ruled out with a thigh injury. As for the midfield, Santi Cazorla is out for the season with his ongoing issue with an achilles injury, while Jeff Reine- Adelaide is expected to miss the remainder of the campaign with an ankle injury.
On Sunday afternoon Arsenal and Manchester City go head-to-head at Wembley in the FA Cup semi-final.
Neither side heads into this clash in great form, but both head into the game on the back of wins in their last outings. Arsenal recorded a hard-fought 2-1 win at Middlesbrough in their last Premier league game, while City won 3-0 at Southampton.
Prior those wins neither side had found any consistency, City had won one of their previous five games in all competitions, while Arsenal had lost four of their last seven games prior to the win at Boro.
According to bookmakers William Hill via the Daily Mirror, they have received massive bets on the possibility of Chelsea captain John Terry joining Arsenal this summer. The bets have all supposedly come from the Reading area, but the bookmakers do not really consider the move a realistic one.
However, it begs the question is it really complete out of the realms of reality that Terry could join the Gunners in the summer?
Available on a free transfer
Is Wilshere’s Arsenal career coming to an end?
Jack Wilshere’s Premier League season is over as Bournemouth midfielder sustained a broken leg against Tottenham.
On loan from Arsenal, the England international has been doing rather well in an injury-free spell at Bournemouth over the course of the season, making 27 appearances for the Cherries, but his stay at Dean Court has been cut short as Wilshere is now expected to return to Arsenal to begin his rehabilitation process.
The 25-year-old midfielder is set for another lengthy lay-off for a similar injury he sustained just before the 2015/16 season, when a broken leg kept his out for the majority of the campaign.