Arsenal have a huge boost as Erling Haaland is a doubt for their Premier League clash in midweek, according to Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.
Both teams are yet to meet in the league this season and have only three points separating them at the top of the table.
A win for Arsenal sees them go six points clear while a win for City sees them top the table on goal difference, putting them in pole position to perform a three-peat of the Premier League title.
However, Manchester City could be going into that match without their highest goal scorer Erling Haaland, who had to be substituted in their 3 – 1 win against Aston Villa on Sunday due to picking up a knock.
The Norwegian, who is also the leading goalscorer in the Premier League and the clear favourites for the European golden boot award, collided with Villa’s goalkeeper, 2022 World Cup winner Emiliano Martinez, suffering a thigh injury as a result.
Unsure of how his summer signing is holding up, Pep said to journalists who quizzed him after the game: “Right now I don’t know. We will have to see over the next few days.
“He got a knock and was uncomfortable so at 3-0 up we didn’t want to take the risk. We will assess him and if he’s not ready we will play someone else. Hopefully he is ready.”
This is a huge chance for Arsenal as much as it is a big loss for City, thanks to what is at stake. Arsenal will still have a game in hand, which makes it important for City to win this match and establish a lead. Guardiola attested to this fact when speaking to journalists after the Villa win.
“Arsenal have a game in hand. We will see after all the games when the Premier League is finished,” the former Bayern Munich manager said. “But we are going to London to try and get a win. When one team has made 50 points in the first leg it is because they are very good. we closed the gap today because the performance from the team was really really good.”
Midfielder Rodri also spoke about the upcoming game and his delight about his team closing the gap between them and Arsenal.
“We have the chance to go top and to go there and show our personality and the team that we are,” he said.
“They are playing at an incredible level and we have an incredible level too. It is going to be an incredible fight and an incredible battle and we have the chance to be on top of the table so that’s what we have to think.”