Manchester City vs. Arsenal Odds, Picks, Betting, Predictions (Saturday, Oct. 17)

Credit:

PETER POWELL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Mikel Arteta, Pep Guardiola

  • Manchester City is a -200 favorite over Arsenal on Saturday afternoon, with the total at 3.5.
  • Brad Cunningham's model makes City an ever bigger favorite, so he's backing them at -1.
  • Get his full breakdown and preview for Man City vs. Arsenal below.

Manchester City vs. Arsenal Odds

Manchester City odds -200 [Bet Now]
Arsenal odds +480 [Bet Now]
Draw +370 [Bet Now]
Over/Under 3.5 (+115/-137) [Bet Now]
Time Saturday, 12:30 p.m. ET
TV NBC

Odds as of Friday at 12 p.m. ET and via DraftKings. Get up to a $1,000 sign-up bonus at DraftKings today or see more offers and reviews for the best online sportsbooks.


Both Manchester City and Arsenal have had unexpected starts to the season for opposite reasons. The Cityzens came out of the gates flat and have already dropped four points in their first three matches. The Gunners, on the other hand, have won three of their first four matches and are currently in the top four.

Manchester City has defeated Arsenal in six straight Premier League encounters by a combined score of 17-2. City are dealing with some injury issues and are off to a wobbly start, but they still are deserved favorites in this match.

Manchester City

The Cityzens come into this match with a 1-1-1 record. They are winless in their last two matches and their last home match was a 5-2 loss to Leicester City.

Although they’ve struggled through their first few matches, it’s hard to ignore how good the Cityzens were in 2019/20. Even though they finished in second, City’s +65.12 expected goals differential was nearly 30 goals better than Liverpool’s.


Expected goals (also known as xG) is an advanced statistic that gives an indication of whether results are based on sustainable factors like a steady creation of scoring chances, or whether it is down to aspects such as luck or outstanding goalkeeping.


City were especially dominant at home last season, posting an averaging margin of +1.88 xG per game (2.66 xGF, 0.77 xGA). They beat Arsenal by a combined score of 6-0 last season and allowed the Gunners to create only 0.85 xG in two matches.

All that said, this is a precarious spot for Manchester City. Not only are they dealing with a rash of injury issues, but City have a Champions League fixture against Porto coming up on Wednesday.

Pep Guardiola already has announced that midfielder Kevin De Bruyne will miss the next few matches, Raheem Sterling is questionable and Gabriel Jesus is doubtful.

However, the positive news is that Man City will get striker Sergio Aguero and midfielder Ilkay Gundogan back in the lineup. Even without De Bruyne, Man City have plenty of talent and depth to continue their dominance over Arsenal.

Considering their start to the season, this is a huge match for Manchester City. Even with their Champions League opener looming, I expect Guardiola’s side to be solely focused on Arsenal.

Arsenal

Last year was the most disappointing season in over two decades at the Emirates. However, things are looking up for the Gunners thanks to three wins in their first four matches.

Arsenal’s defense got a lot of flack last season but their lack of creativity on offense also played a part in a pedestrian 2019/20 season. The Gunners only averaged 1.34 xG/90, putting them in between Everton and Burnley, and relied heavily on Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to finish off the chances they did create.

Even though the Gunners have taken 9 out of a possible 12 points to start the season, their offense has yet to really take off, at least from an xG standpoint. as Arsenal are creating just 1.33 expected goals per match to start the campaign.

Arsenal’s defense should — and needs to– improve in its first full season under Mikel Arteta. The Gunners took a step in the right direction by signing Gabriel and Thomas Partey, but it will take some time for both players to get up to speed. Arsenal fans will be hoping Gabriel and Partey are quick learners, as they will be leaned on to improve a unit that allowed 1.51 xG per match in 2019/20.

Projections and Pick

Bettors may be tempted by the big price on hot-starting Arsenal to pull the upset over struggling Manchester City, but my numbers are pointing me in the other direction. I project Man City to win this game by 1.63 goals, so I think Manchester City -1 at -124 is good value in a buy-low, sell-high spot.

Pick: Manchester City -1 (-124)

[Track all of your Premier League bets by downloading the free Action Network App.]

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