Arsenal and Manchester City meet in the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup on Tuesday night. The sides last met in a cup competition last season, with the Gunners winning 2-0 in the FA Cup semi-finals. Their previous meeting in the League Cup was in 2018 final, when City claimed a 3-0 win at Wembley.
Last season Pep Guardiola’s men lifted the Carabao Cup for the third consecutive year.
But the City boss is concerned about his side’s wastefulness this term.
They have scored 19 goals in 13 Premier League fixtures, just over half of the 37 they had netted at the same stage of the previous campaign.
“We’re struggling, our momentum up front isn’t good,” said Guardiola.
“We are creating clear chances that we cannot score and when this happens we are always going to suffer.
“You need fighters and you don’t want any victims. Victims bring excuses, victims bring negativity and they start to blame anything that is happening around them or is not going their way. You need people who fight, people who contribute and people who are ready to give everything to the club in this moment.
“From within the club everything I am feeling is just support, encouragement, and total confidence that we will get through this together.
“Externally I never read what is happening, I know more or less what is happening but I never read it: in beautiful moments I don’t read it, in difficult moments I don’t read it, I just try to focus on the job and what I have to do.
“But obviously a club of this stature deserves the best and when it is not happening, everyone is going to question what is happening. I am the most responsible one in terms of results, so I have to accept that.”
Express Sport has consulted bookies thepools.com to round up some predictions ahead of the Carabao Cup clash.
The figures shown are based on how fans have been betting on the Arsenal vs Man City markets.
A spokesperson said: “If the Carabao Cup quarter-final isn’t quite in must-win territory for Mikel Arteta yet, it’s certainly in the could do without losing category.
“And worryingly for the beleaguered Gunners’ boss, thepools.com give Arsenal just a 20 per cent chance of success at the Emirates. The victors, on the other hand, are reckoned to have a 62.5% chance of winning the tie.
“Goals could be in short supply. Arsenal have scored only four in their past 10 domestic matches and are likely to be without Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
“City have registered just three times in their last six away fixtures across all competitions, edging to 1-0 wins over Southampton, Olympiacos and Sheffield United, while playing out goalless draws at Manchester United and Porto and losing 2-0 at Tottenham.
“Raheem Sterling, meanwhile, is a solid top to score one of them. He netted twice against the Gunners during his time with Liverpool and has scored on a further five occasions since linking up with City – three of them opening goals of the game.
“Sterling is given a 20% chance of opening the scoring – the same price on an Arsenal win! – while he is reckoned to have a 46.5% chance of scoring at any time in the tie.”