United looking to close gap as they host the league leaders

Manchester United will be hoping to close the gap between them and leaders Arsenal when the pair lock horns at Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon.

The champions are currently eight points behind the Gunners, who are unbeaten since they lost to Aston Villa on the opening day of the season, while United have already lost three times in the Premier League.

Jonny Evans, Rafael and Tom Cleverley all remain doubtful after gaining injuries last weekend while Danny Welbeck definitely misses out with a knee problem and Darren Fletcher is still some way of a return to the first team.

Such is the tightness of the chasing pack, David Moyes men could finish the weekend in second place if they take all three points against the table toppers and other results go their way.

Former Gunner Robin van Persie opened the scoring in a 2-1 victory for United in last season’s corresponding fixture while their last meeting finished in a 1-1 draw at the Emirates in April.

That result at Old Trafford extended the hosts unbeaten home run against Arsene Wenger’s men to nine games, and victory this weekend will see them move to within five points of the early pacesetters.