LONDON, Oct 25 (Reuters) Leaders Arsenal travel to Liverpool on Sunday for the heavyweight clash of the weekend in the English Premier League.
The two teams will approach the match in vastly different states of mind with Arsenal on a roll having won their last 12 matches in all competitions and Liverpool smarting from a defeat in the Champions League yesterday.
Liverpool went down 2-1 to Besiktas in Istanbul while Arsenal thumped Slavia Prague 7-0 at home on Tuesday to equal their biggest win in Europe and also equal the biggest winning margin in the Champions League itself.
Both are unbeaten in the Premier League so far, but Arsenal lead the standings with 25 points from eight wins and a draw from their nine matches while Liverpool have won five and drawn four and amassed 19 points from their nine.
Manchester United are second behind Arsenal and have hit a rich vein of scoring form with 12 goals in their last three matches, including their 4-2 Champions League win at Dynamo Kiev on Tuesday.
United host a Middlesbrough side who have drawn one and lost four of their last five league matches and look to have little chance of improving on that record at Old Trafford.
Manchester City, who have made a surprisingly good start to the season under former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson and are in third place, face a real test of their potential at Chelsea, who are seventh and four points behind City.
Both teams are in form and both have won their last four matches.
At the other end of the table, Bolton Wanderers will begin life under new manager Gary Megson with a visit from Aston Villa, who will be looking to put last week's crushing 4-1 home defeat to Manchester United behind them.
Bolton have made a bad start to the season, and are bottom with just one win in their opening 10 games.
Another team looking to improve on a poor start are Tottenham Hotspur, who have also won just one of their opening 10 matches.
They face in-form Blackburn Rovers at White Hart Lane with speculation mounting that Spurs manager Martin Jol could lose his job to Blackburn's Mark Hughes if Spurs fail to win on Sunday.
Reuters AB DB2247