LONDON, March 30 (Reuters) - Sixth-placed Arsenal host Manchester City on Sunday in the unusual position of being outside the Premier League top four, which means they badly need a win over their third-placed opponents.
We look at five standout matches between the sides.
Premier League - December 2013
Manchester City 6 Arsenal 3 Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger does not have to think back far to remember what can go wrong against Manchester City. This game at the Etihad, when Arsenal led the league by five points after 15 games, showed what lay in store against the eventual champions. City’s Sergio Aguero began the scoring, with Alvaro Negredo and Fernandinho also weighing in before the break. Although Theo Walcott kept Arsenal in the game with a double, David Silva and Fernandinho restored City’s advantage before Arsenal’s Per Mertesacker and Yaya Toure (penalty) traded goals in added time.
”It is very important to be an entertaining team but, for me, it will be more entertaining if we score six and concede none,” said City boss Manuel Pellegrini, whose team pipped Liverpool to the title on the last day of the season. Arsenal came fourth.
Premier League - May 2006
Manchester City 1 Arsenal 3
Eleven years ago Arsenal were struggling to qualify for the Champions League despite booking a place in that year’s final later in May. A win at City, who had little to play for, would allow them to close the gap on fourth-placed local rivals Tottenham Hotspur to one point ahead of the final day. Freddie Ljungberg settled Arsenal’s nerves with his first goal for over a year and, although David Sommeil equalised, Jose Antonio Reyes came off the bench to score twice. Three days later Arsenal beat Wigan Athletic in the last game at Highbury to finish fourth and spark celebrations among the home fans.
Premier League - February 2003
Manchester City 1 Arsenal 5
Arsenal normally got the better of City in Wenger’s early years. This was a day when one of his finest ever sides were at their brutal best, with Denis Bergkamp, Robert Pires, Thierry Henry and Kevin Campbell putting the visitors 4-0 up after 20 minutes. Patrick Vieira added a fifth before former Arsenal favourite Nicolas Anelka pulled a late goal back for City. Unstoppable Arsenal were soon to be known as The Invincibles, going the entire 2003-4 league season unbeaten.
Division One - April 1991
Arsenal 2 Manchester City 2
When they met in 1991, Arsenal were top and seeking a second title in three seasons but this unexpected draw left them with familiar concerns about the run-in. Goals from Kevin Campbell and Paul Merson looked to have secured victory, but a Mark Ward penalty sparked City’s fightback. The draw was secured when Tony Adams badly misjudged an offside from 20 metres, allowing David White to go on and slot the ball under keeper David Seaman. The draw left the Gunners six points clear of Liverpool. Three wins from their final four fixtures secured the title for George Graham’s side.
FA Cup fifth round - February 1971
Manchester City 1 Arsenal 2
Charlie George will be forever remembered for his winner in the 1971 FA Cup final against Liverpool but he also scored a double against Manchester City in this fifth-round win.
Playing on the sort of mud-bath pitch that supporters used to love, George fired a first-half free-kick past keeper Joe Corrigan and then picked his way through the puddles from the halfway line for the winner.
Colin Bell replied for City but Arsenal were on their way in a season that eventually yielded the League and FA Cup double.
$1 = 0.7964 pounds Reporting by Neil Robinson; editing by Ken Ferris