Arsenal vs. Man City Odds, Picks, Predictions | Premier League Betting Preview (Wednesday, Feb. 15)

Arsenal vs. Man City Odds, Picks, Predictions | Premier League Betting Preview (Wednesday, Feb. 15) article feature image

Stuart MacFarlane/Getty. Pictured: Arsenal players celebrate a goal.

Arsenal vs. Man City Odds

Wednesday, Feb. 15
2:30 p.m. ET

Arsenal Odds


Man City Odds

Over/Under2.5 (+104/ -126)
Both Teams to Score (Yes/No)(-156 / +122)
Odds via FanDuel. Get the latest soccer odds here.

Defending Premier League champions Manchester City can pull level with current league leaders Arsenal when the sides meet on Wednesday at the Emirates Stadium in London.

Arsenal would still have a match in hand should they lose Wednesday's encounter, and they've been fully deserving of their spot atop the table to this point.

However, City are in better form, winning four of their last five across all competitions, including a 1-0 triumph over Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium in the fourth round of the FA Cup last month.

This is the teams' first league meeting in a game rescheduled from October. They'll meet again in Manchester in late April with six games left to play in the league schedule.

Arsenal Hitting First Real Dip in Form

After winning a hugely anticipated match over Manchester United, Arsenal have hit a slide that began with an FA Cup loss at City.

They followed that with a 1-0 loss at Everton in Sean Dyche's first game in charge of the Toffees, and a 1-1 home draw against Brentford.

More concerning than the results may be the nature of how both matches were played. Arsenal held more than two-thirds of the possession in both contests, but finished those 180 minutes being beaten 3.7 to 2.5 in xG generated.

Taking a wider view, that's exactly the kind of game where Arsenal have struggled this season. They are a perfect 9-0-0 (W-L-D) in the league when they hold 57% possession or less. They're 7-2-3 in the games in which they've had 59% or more.

That could lead you to believe Arsenal are best against teams in the top end of the table, but that hasn't exactly been true. With Manchester United and Newcastle in third and fourth, there's an unusual amount of elite Premier League teams opting out of a ball-dominant approach.

City like the ball, but they're also the only team to defeat Arsenal in any competition this season while keeping more of it. However much or little you read into their FA Cup tussle, the Cityzens had 54% of the possession in that 1-0 win.

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Man City in Rare Battle For Title

It can be tempting to look at City's league-best +34 goal differential and their +29 xG difference and conclude they're unfortunate not to be leaders already.

But, there is a statistically measurable drop in quality compared to their last five seasons. Only in the 2020-2021 campaign did they produce a goal difference per 90 minutes and xG difference per 90 under their current rates of 1.55 and 1.38, respectively. That was the season mostly played without fans, which perhaps blunted the impact of match momentum.

City have enjoyed an xG difference of at least 9.0 better than the second-place finisher in their last four title-winning seasons. Their xGDiff was +24.5 better than Liverpool when they finished second to the Merseysiders in the 2019-2020 campaign.

You might conclude City's approach requires statistical dominance by a significant margin to produce results. If a team can just keep the analytics close — as Arsenal have done so far — they've got a good shot at earning more points. In other words, no data exists that suggests Arsenal are pretenders.

City also have this troubling trend: Of 10 teams in all competitions they've faced multiple times, they've only swept the series on three occasions. They've only done it once as far as the league is concerned, against a significantly over-matched Wolverhampton Wanderers.

There's one more thing to add. City's leading scorer Erling Haaland could be out or at least limited after he was forced off at halftime of City's 3-1 home win over Villa on the weekend.

Arsenal vs. Man City Pick

If it feels like neither team is playing up to the standards of a league champion, it's because of the standard City have helped set.

Five of the last six champions have earned points at a higher rate than Arsenal's current haul of 2.43 per match. City were the league winners on three of those five occasions.

Liverpool and Chelsea have also won titles while earning points above that threshold, but prior to the previous six years, only one team had finished above Arsenal's approximately 92-point pace: the 2004-2005 Chelsea team.

In other words, don't believe the narrative that Arsenal need to back their way to a title. Their performances are well in line with recent champions, and their recent defeats suggest a consistent weakness against countering sides as much as they might represent a true dip in form.

Add in City's struggles to sweep against good teams or even mediocre ones and the boost home field advantage can give, and you see Arsenal are the play here.

The moneyline is a good play, but at better than even money the draw no bet market is a better one.

A +116 price implies a 46.3% probability Arsenal will be winners if the game doesn't end in a draw. As always, a draw in this market voids your wager.

Pick: Arsenal – Draw No Bet (+116 via FanDuel)

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