Aaron Ramsey believes Arsenal v Manchester United is always a massive game no mater what is going on with the two sides.
The two clubs face each other outside of the top four this far into a season for the first time since the late 70s. Both know they only have an outside chance of making the top four and the game is likely just about who finishes fifth or sixth, with United seemingly prepared to prioritise the Europa League as their way of gaining a Champions League spot.
“Manchester United against Arsenal is a massive game no matter what the circumstances,” Ramsey told Arsenal Player.
“It just shows how tight the Premier League is now with more teams fighting for the championship. Even though we are still off that a little bit with United, it is still a massive game.
“A lot more teams have brought their own quality to the game. Liverpool, for example, are up there now, Chelsea last season had a difficult year but have come back and responded differently. A lot more teams and managers are having an impact.
“They were exciting games [when Vieira was facing up to Roy Keane],” he added.
“A few more tackles were let go in those days. Everyone was looking forward to that battle and there was normally a red card to show for it.
“They showed how passionate they were to try to win this game and how much it meant to them and the team to get a result. They wanted to get one over on each other so that’s what made it so exciting.”
You have to love how Ramsey thinks Arsenal (and United) are only a ‘little bit’ off the title.
At the time of writing, Arsenal are 21 points behind Chelsea, albeit with a game in hand. United aren’t faring much better, sitting some 16 points behind the Champions-elect.
A win for Arsenal will close the gap on United to just two points with a game in hand, putting fifth place back in their own hands.
Can you handle the excitement?