Match preview: Arsenal v United
Manchester United are back in Premier League action on Saturday as we visit Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.
The Reds will look to bounce back after the surprise defeat to Sheffield United in midweek and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have an impressive record on the road this Premier League campaign. In fact, we are unbeaten away from home in 17 league games and will set a new club record by avoiding defeat in N7.
As we search for another success away from Old Trafford, and face one of our historic top-flight rivals, here's all you need to know…
HOW CAN I FOLLOW THE GAME?
Kick-off in the capital is scheduled for 17:30 GMT on Saturday and the match will be broadcast live in the UK on Sky Sports. You can follow all the action on ManUtd.com and in our Official App, where you can also track in-game data via our Match Centre. MUTV will also provide build-up, live radio commentary and post-match reaction, as well as showing full reruns of the game the following day. The Match Day Live programme on MUTV starts at 16:25 GMT.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer confirmed Eric Bailly missed Wednesday's encounter with the Blades due to a knock but the Norwegian will hope the defender can be available for selection in London. Victor Lindelof was an unused substitute after playing at the weekend, as Ole continues to manage his recovery from a back problem. Brandon Williams is back training with the squad following his injury, but Phil Jones remains unavailable.
For the hosts, star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang missed Tuesday's 3-1 win over Southampton due to personal reasons, and Mikel Arteta could not confirm if the attacker would be back for the weekend when speaking to reporters on Thursday. Emile Smith Rowe, who has earned himself a starting spot lately, was substituted with what seemed to be an injury at St. Mary’s but should be fit to face United. Defender Pablo Mari and midfielder Dani Ceballos are doubts. We could see a fresh face in the Premier League on Saturday as Arsenal announced the loan signing of Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard earlier this week.
Before the shock result against the Blades, United had gone 13 games unbeaten in the Premier League. During this spell, the Reds found the net 29 times and climbed to the top of the table. Sunday’s fixture will be our last in January, and in the first month of the new year the Reds have won five, drawn one and lost two across all competitions.
The Gunners have found form in the league, following a tricky start to their campaign. After their 3-1 triumph against London rivals Chelsea on Boxing Day, the Gunners are unbeaten in six, winning five of those games. However, they did fall to a 1-0 defeat against the Saints in the FA Cup on 23 January.HEAD-TO-HEAD
Historically, this has been one of the great Premier League rivalries. We all remember Roy Keane and Patrick Vieira's bust-up in the tunnel at Highbury as well as some outstanding counter-attacking United goals at the Emirates. Saturday’s encounter will be the 234th meeting between the sides, with United having the best record looking at our 233 previous battles. The Reds have come out on top 97 times, with Arsenal winning 84 and 52 ending all-square.
The Gunners won at Old Trafford earlier this season, thanks to Aubameyang’s penalty, while our last win against the Gunners came in the cup, in January 2019. Former Arsenal man Alexis Sanchez opened the scoring for United, before Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial secured a thrilling 3-1 win.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Bukayo Saka has been in fine form for Arteta’s men of late. Against the Saints on Tuesday evening, the Gunners’ no. 7 showcased his talents with a goal and a precise assist for French frontman Alexandre Lacazette. Saka also scored in the 3-0 triumph over Newcastle in their previous Premier League fixture, a game where Aubameyang refound his goalscoring touch, with a brace. Lacazette has also started 2021 promisingly, registering three times in the top-flight since the turn of the year, and he is averaging 1.52 shots on target per 90 minutes this season.
Referee: Michael Oliver
Assistant referees: Stuart Burt, Simon Bennett
Fourth official: Robert Jones
VAR: Paul Tierney
Assistant VAR: Andy Halliday
WHO ELSE IS PLAYING?
It’s a full weekend of Premier League action, with plenty of interesting encounters. This is what the schedule looks like…
SATURDAY 30 JANUARY
Everton v Newcastle United (12:30 GMT)
Crystal Palace v Wolverhampton Wanderers (15:00 GMT)
Manchester City v Sheffield United (15:00 GMT)
West Bromwich v Fulham (15:00 GMT)
Arsenal v UNITED (17:30 GMT)
Southampton v Aston Villa (20:00 GMT)
SUNDAY 31 JANUARY
Chelsea v Burnley (12:00 GMT)
Leicester v Leeds United (14:00 GMT)
West Ham United v Liverpool (16:30 GMT)
Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur (19:15 GMT)