Can Arsenal keep lead over Manchester City?
In an upcoming Premier League match, Arsenal will face off against Manchester City, and both teams’ managers, Pep Guardiola and Mikel Arteta, have downplayed the match’s significance in the title race. However, looking at the data, there may be more at stake than they realize.
Top Two Teams Face Off
This is the ninth time in Premier League history that the top two teams will meet after 33 or more games. In all previous eight instances, the team in the lead with five or fewer points has won the title. The only exception was in 2008 when Chelsea defeated Manchester United 2-1, but Sir Alex Ferguson’s team still finished first by two points.
Past Title Showdowns
The last time there was a title showdown like this was in 2014, where neither team won the league. Chelsea defeated leaders Liverpool 2-0 at Anfield, but City ended up being crowned champions on the final day.
Data analysts Nielsen Gracenote currently rate City as having a 79% chance of winning the title. However, if Arsenal wins the upcoming match, they become the favorites with a 55% chance of winning. On the other hand, if City wins, their chance of winning the title goes up to 89%, and Arsenal’s chance drops to 11%.
It’s important to note that City has two games in hand on Arsenal, who have drawn their last three matches.
While the match is crucial, both managers have emphasized that it’s not the end of the title race. Guardiola said that “It is really important, but not decisive because there are many games to play.” Arteta and Guardiola worked together at City before Arteta became the Arsenal manager in 2019. However, Guardiola says that “nothing changes” their relationship when their teams face each other.