Leicester vs Arsenal: Vardy and Mahrez face Ozil and Giroud

It will be a case of look at what you could have won when the wounded Gunners take on the champions on Saturday

(Image credit: Ross Kinnaird/Getty Image)

Last season's top two in the Premier League clash on Saturday evening, but even at this early stage of the season few people believe that champions Leicester City or Arsenal will be challenging for the title in nine months' time.

On paper the showdown at the King Power stadium should be the game of the weekend, and it may well be, but much of its appeal will be down to its potential car-crash value.

Leicester were beaten by newly-promoted Hull last weekend and Arsenal were taken to the cleaners by Liverpool in front of their own fans. Whoever loses this will have the official status of "crisis club".

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It is the first time since 1953 that the previous season's top two both lost on the opening weekend, says BBC commentator Steve Wilson.

"I'm not sure what would cheer Arsenal fans just now - except perhaps two or three stop-you-in-your-tracks new signings," he says. "That's about as likely as Arsene Wenger driving a camouflaged Bentley down the Holloway Road chucking £50 notes out of the window."

There is some good news for the Gunners, however. Mesut Ozil, Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud should all return after being rested on the opening weekend.

"The visit to Leicester also provides Arsene Wenger with a chance to see what he could have won this summer, with Jamie Vardy expected to face Arsenal for the first time since he turned down a move to the Emirates," notes the London Evening Standard. "Riyad Mahrez was also on the Gunners' radar over recent months but will line up against them on Saturday."

Robert Huth will be back to Leicester to tighten up their rearguard, so the Gunners will face a tough task breaking down the champions, even though they were the only side to beat them twice last season.

"It seems almost inevitable that either Mahrez or Vardy will score after their links with Arsenal this summer and subsequent new contracts, especially with an understrength Arsenal defence," says ESPN. "But Leicester have had their own teething problems so a draw looks likely."

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