EPL 2012-13: Manchester United vs Arsenal Preview

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EPL:Manchester United vs Arsenal Preview
Manchester, Nov 3: Arsenal return to Old Trafford with memories of the darkest day last season when they suffered a humiliating defeat against Manchester United losing 8-2.

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Arsene Wenger has no plans to avenge that miserable defeat but his side are struggling to keep up the pace. Losing back to back against Norwich City and Schalke, a narrow victory against Queens Park Rangers and although they won against Reading, Gunners conceded four goals within 37 minutes.

That weak defence has to now face their former hero, Robin van Persie, top scorer in the Premier League last season and the likes of Wayne Rooney. United have won five in a row including Chelsea last Sunday but were pushed out of the Capital One Cup against the Blues.

United boss Alex Ferguson is likely to play Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia on either flanks after blasting winger Nani for losing possession which eventually turned out to be Chelsea's goal.

Red Devils defenders Phil Jones and Chris Smalling continue to recover from their injuries while playmaker Shinji Kagawa is out for four more weeks.

Meanwhile, Arsenal have no fresh injury concerns but their top-scorer Gervinho is out with an ankle injury while defender Kieran Gibbs remains sidelined, meaning Andre Santos will continue at left-back.

Theo Walcott could remain on the bench for the Gunners despite scoring a hat-trick against Reading during their thriller cup tie. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will face a late fitness test but is most likely to be on the substitutes list.

Trivia:

*Manchester United beat Arsenal 8-2 in Aug 2011, the highest-scoring match between the two sides.

*Robin van Persie scored 37 goals for Arsenal last season.

Probable Lineups:

Manchester United (4-3-3): De Gea-Rafael, Ferdinand, Evans, Evra-Carrick, Cleverley-Valencia, Rooney, Young-Van Persie.

Arsenal (4-3-3): Mannone-Sagna, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Santos-Wilshere, Arteta-Cazorla-Ramsey, Giroud, Podolski.

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