This season has been a disappointing one for Arsenal. They are eight points out of the Champions League places. They’ve had some shockingly poor performances and bad results. Their form away from the Emirates is horrendous. Their recent defeat at home to Östersunds didn’t help things either.
But the doubt and negativity surrounding the club can still be washed away. The season is by no means lost - it’s teetering on the brink, but it’s not gone yet. In the past 5+ years, Arsenal have put together some incredible springtime runs to secure Champions League qualification and win FA Cups.
A similar run could start today. A piece of silverware could be the catalyst Arsenal need to shake them out of the doldrums to reach the levels their talent will allow. Standing in their way, a talented Manchester City team that is running away with the Premier League title.
But City are not invincible (double entendre DEFINITELY intended). They suffered their first league defeat a few weeks ago to Liverpool. They drew with Burnley. They washed out of the FA Cup with a loss to League One Wigan Athletic. When Arsenal traveled to the Etihad in November, the match was much closer than the 3-1 scoreline suggests. Arsenal can beat Manchester City.
A reminder: Henrikh Mkhitaryan is cup-tied and cannot play for Arsenal in the Carabao Cup. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang can be selected (he is only Europa League cup-tied). Aaron Ramsey and Mesut Özil face late fitness tests, but Arsene Wenger seemed optimistic that they will be available.
Wembley has been good to Arsenal in cup finals recently. Let’s hope that trend continues.
Arsenal - Ospina, Bellerín, Mustafi, Koscielny, Chambers, Monreal, Xhaka, Wilshere, Ramsey, Özil, Aubameyang
Here it is - our team for the @Carabao_Cup final #AFCvMCFC pic.twitter.com/fQVUqJvSsJ— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) February 25, 2018
City - Bravo, Walker, Kompany, Otamendi, Danilo, Fernandinho, Gundogan, De Bruyne, Silva, Sane, Aguero
How we line-up at Wembley!— Manchester City (@ManCity) February 25, 2018
City XI | Bravo, Walker, Kompany (c), Otamendi, Danilo, Fernandinho, Silva, Gundogan, De Bruyne, Sane, Aguero
Subs | Ederson, Stones, Laporte, Bernardo, Zinchenko, Foden, Jesus
Presented by @haysworldwide #mancity pic.twitter.com/LRa9Yu9ePf
WHAT: Arsenal vs. Manchester City, Carabao Cup final
WHERE: Wembley Stadium, London
WHEN: Sunday, February 25th, 8:30AM PST | 11:30AM EST | 4:30PM GMT
US TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes, streaming on WatchESPN
NOT IN THE US? Go to livesoccer.tv for streaming information.