We are in for a fascinating evenings entertainment from Old Trafford, as Arsenal’s nemesis Jose Mourinho tries to stop Unai Emery’s incredible unbeaten run since the opening two games of the season. The Red Devils extensive injury problems will give us extra confidence but with the resilience that Arsenal have showed over the last few months we know that they will fight to the death or at least for 90 plus minutes!
So this latest View From the Enemy comes direct from the Man United website and it is full of interesting info about the game.
Read on and enjoy…..
Manchester United’s busy December schedule continues with a significant game on Wednesday night, when another side with top-four aspirations, Arsenal, comes to Old Trafford.
The match comes just four days after our clash with Southampton and after the disappointment of drawing 2-2 at St Mary’s, Jose Mourinho will be hoping to make home advantage count and continue his impressive record against the Gunners.
Here’s everything you need to know ahead of the game…
Jose has a number of defensive injury concerns heading into the game, with doubts surrounding Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Eric Bailly and Luke Shaw, while Victor Lindelof will definitely miss the game, as will Ashley Young, who is suspended after picked up his fifth yellow card of the season against Southampton. It means Diogo Dalot could be in line to register his first Premier League start for the Reds, after making his competition bow as a substitute on Saturday, although Matteo Darmian is another option. Marcos Rojo is still awaiting his first senior appearance of the season following a knee injury.
In attack, Romelu Lukaku and Marcus Rashford both came off at Southampton with knocks but, so far, there has been no suggestion they will join Alexis Sanchez on the sidelines. As reported last week, the Chilean is out of action until the New Year and will therefore miss the chance to face his former club for a second time.
WHAT ABOUT ARSENAL?
The Gunners also have a number of fitness concerns at the back. Shkodran Mustafi was withdrawn against Tottenham at the weekend and it remains to be seen whether he will be fit for Wednesday. Should he be ruled out, the centre-back will join Laurent Koscielny, Konstantinos Mavropanos and Nacho Monreal on the sidelines. Another German who might be unavailable is Mesut Ozil. The 30-year-old playmaker missed the Spurs game with a back injury which could force him to sit out the trip to Old Trafford. Granit Xhaka will definitely miss the match through suspension, while former Reds striker Danny Welbeck is continuing to recover from the ankle fracture he suffered last month.
HOW ARE THE GUNNERS GETTING ON?
Arsenal are on an impressive 19-game unbeaten run in all competitions – their last defeat actually came in the second match of the Premier League season, against Chelsea. Last time out the Gunners came from behind to beat local rivals Tottenham Hotspur 4-2 at the Emirates Stadium, thanks to a brace from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and goals from Alexandre Lacazette and Lucas Torreira. The North London club have picked up 30 points from a possible 42 to date and are fourth in the table.
ONE TO WATCH
Torreira is in good form and was voted Man of the Match on Sunday when he notched his first Arsenal goal. The Uruguayan midfielder, who joined the Gunners in the summer, is a great passer and loves a tackle too.
END OF AN ERA
This is the first time in the Premier League that Manchester United v Arsenal will be played without either Sir Alex Ferguson or Arsene Wenger in the dugouts. The pair shared the Premier League title for nine seasons between 1996 and 2004 and developed a strong rivalry over the years. Last time the Gunners came to Old Trafford, Wenger was presented with an honorary vase by his old adversaries Sir Alex and Jose, to commemorate the Frenchman’s extraordinary 22-year reign as Arsenal boss.
OUR RECORD AGAINST ARSENAL
We’ve faced the Gunners on 227 previous occasions, the first of which was in 1894. We have a slightly better record over the years than Arsenal and have won 98 times compared to their 82. There have also been 47 draws between the teams. In the last meeting, at Old Trafford in April, United triumphed 2-1 thanks to a late winner from Marouane Fellaini.
In August 2011, the Reds put the Gunners to the sword at Old Trafford with a superb 8-2 victory. Current Arsenal striker Danny Welbeck started the scoring that day for the Reds, before Ashley Young netted a brace, Wayne Rooney bagged a hat-trick and Nani and Ji-sung Park also got on the scoresheet in one of our most memorable Premier League games.
WHO’S THE REFEREE?
Andre Marriner will oversee proceedings on Wednesday. The 47-year-old last took charge of a United game during the opening weekend of the Premier League season, when we beat Leicester City 2-1. Marriner will be assisted by Scott Ledger and Simon Long, while Chris Kavanagh will be fourth official on the night.
That is not a bad preview, and to be honest it is a lot more in depth than we get from Arsenal! But the quality of the website post will have no effect on the game tonight and we are definitely not going to break our unbeaten run against moaning Mourinho’s losers….