Pep Guardiola meets his protegee on Tuesday night knowing that a victory over Mikel Arteta would add yet more pressure on the Arsenal manager and former Manchester City assistant.
Arteta has lost five of his last seven games in the Premier League but those who support the beleaguered manager, including his Arsenal bosses, would point to his exceptional record in domestic cup competitions as evidence of what he can get out of this side on one-off occasions. The Spaniard still has not lost a domestic cup game with Arsenal, extend that run on Tuesday in the EFL Cup quarterfinals and he will ease the furore over his position at least for a while.
Here's how you can watch the match and what to know:
- Date: Tuesday, Dec. 22
- Time: 3 p.m. ET
- Location: Emirates Stadium -- London, United Kingdom
- TV: ESPN+
- Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
- Odds: Arsenal +375; Draw +333; Manchester City -163 (via William Hill Sportsbook)
Arsenal: Creativity has been the Gunners' greatest problem amid their worst start to the season in decades with little to link defence, midfield and attack as the likes of Willian and Dani Ceballos struggle to make an impact. Arsenal are 13th in the Premier League for expected goals per 90, 16th for chances created and 17th for actual goals per league game.
If veteran players aren't able to make those chances perhaps the burden should fall on young shoulders? Some of the few bright sparks of this campaign have been academy graduates Bukayo Saka, Reiss Nelson and Joe Willock, who could come in if Arteta rotates with an eye on the Premier League.
Manchester City: Their difficulties may not be as pronounced as Arsenal but much like Arteta's side, City appear to be having difficulties putting the ball into the net. Their tally of 19 goals is the 11th most in the Premier League and it should be noted that over a quarter of them came in a 5-0 win over Burnley last month.
Sergio Aguero's fitness requires careful monitoring whilst Gabriel Jesus has just three goals from 10 games in all competitions. Meanwhile the wide forwards who once carried a heavy scoring burden are not, Raheem Sterling and Ferran Torres aside, weighing in with quite the regularity they once did.
It would be a bold individual who predicted a string of goals in this game but it would be someone even bolder still who predicted Arsenal could end their winless streak against a side with better options in every position. PICK: Manchester City (-163)