Mar 29, 2014 at 5.30pm UK at ​Emirates Stadium
Arsenal
1-1
Man CityManchester City
Flamini (53')
Rosicky (42')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Silva (18')
Toure (31'), Kompany (33'), Silva (45'), Garcia (89')

Preview: Arsenal vs. Manchester City

Sports Mole previews the Premier League clash between title-chasing Manchester City and Arsenal, whose ambitions are now likely limited to a top-four finish.

Arsenal and Manchester City meet at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday evening with recent results meaning that only one of them is considered to be genuine Premier League title contenders.

City's 3-0 victory over rivals Manchester United in midweek took them to within three points of table-topping Chelsea, and they still have two games in hand.

A second straight match without a win - a 2-2 draw at home to Swansea on Tuesday, has left the Gunners six points back and Arsene Wenger admitting that finishing in the top four is now their priority.

With next weekend's opponents Everton only six points behind them, having played a game fewer, Arsenal now have a fight on their hands to secure Champions League qualification.

Theo Walcott, Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Ozil remain key absentees for the visit of the Citizens, while a predicted two-week layoff for central defender Laurent Koscielny comes as a huge blow to Wenger.

Club captain Thomas Vermaelen will continue alongside Per Mertesacker at the back, with Bacary Sagna, who has been linked heavily with City this week, taking up his usual place at right-back.

Wenger may restore Lukas Podolski to the XI after the German scored and assisted as a substitute against Swansea. With Mathieu Flamini likely to start to give greater protection to Arsenal's defence, which has conceded 17 goals in five games against the top three, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain may be sacrificed.

Manuel Pellegrini has no new injury worries ahead of their trip to North London, where they put five past Tottenham Hotspur earlier in the season, but Sergio Aguero is still nursing a hamstring strain.

Reported Arsenal target Micah Richards and Matija Nastasic are also unavailable, so Pellegrini may name an unchanged lineup from the one that was victorious so convincingly at Old Trafford.

Edin Dzeko is expected to start in attack after scoring twice in the derby, with the City manager's only possible selection dilemma be between former Gunner Gael Clichy and Aleksander Kolarov at left-back.

Recent form

Arsenal: DLWDWL

City: WWWLLW

Possible starting lineups

Arsenal: Szczesny; Sagna, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Gibbs; Arteta, Flamini; Rosicky, Cazorla, Podolski; Giroud

City: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Demichelis, Clichy; Fernandinho, Toure; Navas, Silva, Nasri; Dzeko

Sports Mole says: 0-2

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger prior to kick-off against Crystal Palace on October 26, 2013
Read Next:
Preview: Chelsea vs. Arsenal
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City24212170185265
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd24165349163353
3Chelsea24155445162950
4Liverpool23138254282647
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal24126645311442
7Leicester CityLeicester249783632434
8Burnley249781921-234
9Everton2477102639-1328
10Watford2475123344-1126
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2468103042-1226
12Bournemouth2467112536-1125
13Crystal Palace2467112237-1525
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2466121941-2224
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2465132234-1223
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2458111733-1623
17Stoke CityStoke2465132550-2523
18Southampton2349102334-1121
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom24311101931-1220
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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