United look vulnerable to Arsenal’s firepower
Injury-hit squad must raise their game after struggling to beat League One Rochdale
Liverpool and Manchester City already look set for a battle to rival last season’s title epic and the sides have put daylight between themselves and the pack after just six games. However, the races to fill the top four and top six look far from clear-cut with Leicester City, West Ham United and Bournemouth occupying top-six positions, Manchester United, yet to win an away match, in eighth, and Chelsea in the bottom half, with only Watford and Norwich City having a worst defensive record.
Arsenal may be sitting in fourth, but Unai Emery is starting to come under pressure ahead of the visit to Old Trafford on Monday night.
At this stage, I would be more than happy to place bets on both the managers on the touchline on Monday to not be in their position on the opening day of next season, but a win here will buy Emery some breathing space.
United are struggling with injuries and Marcus Rashford is the latest to be ruled out. Fringe players Angel Gomes, Fred and Jesse Lingard made up United’s front six, along with Scott Mctominay, Daniel James and Andreas Pereira, at the end of their disappointing 2-0 defeat at West Ham last week, and it is hard to imagine them causing too many problems against any team. Arsenal to beat Manchester United West Ham to beat Bournemouth Southampton to beat Tottenham Mums Tipple (3.00 Newmarket)
With the second-string side struggling to progress past Rochdale in the Carabao Cup in midweek, I want to take on United in every game, at least until some of their top names make a return.
Arsenal have more than enough firepower to score at least once at Old Trafford, and the 2/1 about them coming away with a win looks too good to ignore.
Elsewhere, two of the top six face each other today, when West Ham travel to Bournemouth. An abject performance in midweek, when they lost 4-0 to League One Oxford United, could inspire West Ham, whose second-string are far from reliable, to bounce back.
With Sebastian Haller, Felipe Anderson, Manuel Lanzini and Declan Rice set to come back into the side, they possess more than enough quality to breach a Bournemouth defence who have failed to record a clean sheet in the league this season.
If there is to be a shock this weekend, it could come in London, with Southampton too big at 6/1 to beat Tottenham.
This Southampton side are ideally set up to play away from home against big teams, with plenty of pace and guile on the break. With Tottenham struggling to find decent form, it might be worth throwing a few quid on the away side to cause a surprise.
There is a fantastic race meeting at Newmarket today, and we could witness the arrival of a star in Mums Tipple.
Plenty of people thought his 12-length demolition of a huge field at York last time was too good to be true, but sometimes the eye does not deceive you. I think he could be top class and the fact he takes on two unbeaten challengers, one from France in Earthlight, and the other Irish raider Siskin, means he is a generous price at 5/2 to win the Middle Park Stakes.
Marksman: Pierre-emerick Aubameyang (centre) has scored six Premier League goals already this season for Arsenal