The race to finish in the top four is reaching its final conclusion and this match at the Etihad will have a big say in who finishes where in the top four – a win for Arsenal would cement their position and heap the pressure on Manchester City, with their city rivals, United, breathing down their necks.
City fell short of reaching their first ever Champions League Final on Wednesday night as they slumped to a 1-0 aggregate defeat at the hands of Real Madrid, disappointingly registering just one shot on target over the course of 180 minutes.
They must now pick themselves up to host a Gunners side hoping to cement their automatic qualification into next year’s competition, but they will know that victory will take them above their opponents and into third, because off their superior goal difference.
The Citizens have won 12 out of their 19 home games in the league this season and have scored more than anyone else this term with 68, however it has been their defence which has often let them down.
Arsenal visit the Etihad with a very average away form. They have only won eight out of the 18 games on the road this season which will have disappointed manager Arsene Wenger, who was desperate for is side to really push for the title this year.
However, the north London outfit are unbeaten in their last eight, and registered a narrow 1-0 success against Norwich City at the Emirates last weekend, with substitute Danny Welbeck netting the winner.
While Leicester City wrapped the title up on Monday night, Arsenal have that extra motivation as they look to avoid finishing behind arch-rivals Tottenham for the first time in Premier League history.
Man City face the Gunners without a host of senior players. Captain Vincent Kompany is now unlikely to return to the side until next season after an injury-plagued term struck again when he injured his groin at the Bernabeu on Wednesday night.
Fellow defenders Pablo Zabaleta and Aleksandar Kolarov, as well as midfielder David Silva, will also miss their crunch Premier League tie this Sunday.
Arsene Wenger is without Per Mertesacker and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain with hamstring and knee injuries respectively for this important match in the race for top four, but could welcome back Santi Cazorla to the starting XI.
League Positions: Man City – 4th (64 pts); Arsenal – 3rd (67 pts)
Previous Meetings: Arsenal 2-1 Man City (December 20, 2015)
Form: Man City – WWWDWL; Arsenal – WDDWDW
Key Players: Man City – Sergio Aguero; Arsenal – Alexis Sanchez
Shoot Says: Man City 2-1 Arsenal