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Ex-Arsenal defender expects defeat in Emery’s first match

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Arsenal enter the new campaign under the guidance of a new boss for the first time in over two decades, with Unai Emery taking the helm at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners face a tough start to the new season, hosting Manchester City on Sunday before tackling London rivals Chelsea the following week – and one pundit does not expect a good start for the Gunners.

Former Arsenal defender Paul Merson has backed Manchester City to inflict a 3-1 defeat upon Emery’s side this season, while identifying the Citizens as the favourites to defend their Premier League crown in 2018-19.

Making his weekly predictions for Sky Sports, he said:

“If you had asked me last Saturday I’d have fancied Arsenal, but City were outstanding last weekend against Chelsea. I feel with the new manager, there will be a plan this time from Arsenal, whereas last year they got absolutely rinsed.

“But I think City will have too much for them. With these Arsenal players on the training ground, you’ve got to make drills monotonous to really ram home the message, but I don’t think they’ve had the time yet.”

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