Martin Keown expects Saka to benefit from one City absence

Martin Keown has discussed some tactical battles we will see when Arsenal takes on Manchester City at the Etihad today and expects Bukayo Saka to benefit from the absence of Nathan Ake.

Ake is set to miss the game, which is a huge blow to City because he has been one of their consistently good performers in recent months and could have been a huge obstacle for Arsenal.

The Dutchman dealt with Saka the last time both clubs met and could be the ideal player to stop the Arsenal man from causing trouble in this game.

As he misses the match, Keown expects Saka to be licking his lips ahead of the match.

He writes in his column in The Daily Mail:

“Bernardo Silva started the game at left back but finished it as a right winger! That was a big ask for Silva as he was tasked with dealing with Arsenal’s two most dangerous players in Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard in swapping between defence to midfield. 

“Once Guardiola made a mid-match switch, moving Nathan Ake to left back, City improved.

“Ake slapped the handcuffs on Saka that day, as he did in City’s FA Cup win a month earlier. It is a huge blow for City that Ake is injured but good news for Saka.”

Just Arsenal Opinion

Stopping Saka will be a big topic in the City dressing room because the Englishman is arguably our best player at the moment.

If he can get the freedom to play his game even for a few minutes in this match, City will pay a huge price.

But we do not expect to rely on him alone. If the champions focus too much on the Euro 2020 finalist, our other stars may cause the damage.

Mikel Arteta in positive mood ahead of Man City visit – “If you want to be champions, you have to win those matches. It’s as simple as that.”

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