Arsene Wenger says Arsenal’s latest showdown with Manchester United is even bigger than usual because the two sides sit so close together in the table
Louis van Gaal’s Red Devils are currently top of the Premier League just three points ahead of the Gunners as the two sides prepare to clash at the Emirates on Sunday.
Reflecting on a fixture that he’s presided over 54 times in the last 19 years, Wenger revealed he’s confident of securing a positive result.
“It is a special fixture because usually Man United are always fighting at the top,” he told press on Friday. “It has an even bigger meaning now because there are three points between the teams, and we play at home in a big game.
“We have just come from a big win at Leicester and we want to continue our run. We are the only team who has beaten [Leicester], so I don’t see why we should not believe we can beat Manchester United.
“At the moment it is too difficult to say that any team dominates the championship,” added Wenger. “It is so tight that one point more after seven games does not mean you will suddenly make a big difference in the league.
“It is settling at the moment and it is a very important time in the Premier League but you cannot come to a conclusion that one team is above everybody else.”
Despite losing against United at home in the league last season, the Gunners twice impressed at Old Trafford securing victory in the FA Cup and a late league point in May.
According to Mesut Ozil those two results, along with last term’s win at Manchester City, have gone some way to helping Arsenal rebuild their confidence against England’s strongest opponents.
“The anticipation and the expectation is obviously big,” the German midfielder told Arsenal Player.
“We just want to prove ourselves and get the three points. When you prove yourself against big teams, your self-belief increases because you believe in yourself more.
“If you look at our team, in the last few weeks we’ve been weakened by red cards. But if we can prevent that, I’m convinced that we can do well against big teams. We’ll show that against Manchester United.”