Arsene Wenger believes the winner of the Manchester derby this weekend will be the favourite to win the Premier League.
The Gunners are five points behind both Manchester clubs and the Arsenal boss believes the winner of the derby will have a psychological boost going into the rest of the season.
“The two teams have started well so it will have more psychological impact than a mathematical impact,” Wenger was quoted by the Daily Mail.
“You could say the team that wins will straightaway be branded as the favourites to win the Premier League in May. It is a bit early. But it will be interesting to watch.”
Both Manchester clubs have started the season well, winning their opening three games of the season and have maximum points under new managers Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho.
Wenger and his Arsenal team will be preparing for their game against Southampton when the Manchester derby starts, but he says he will be watching to see the strengths and weaknesses of both sides.
“I will watch that game and see a little bit what strengths and weaknesses come out of the two teams. It is about the performance on the pitch and that will be decisive.
“Normally people after the game speak only about the results, but we know inside the game that there are some turning points where a guy missed the final ball, or someone was offside and if he had not been offside they would have been 1-0 up.
“The potential of the teams, as well, the organisation, the decisions of the managers during the game. All these kinds of things, you are relaxed enough to observe it.
“We know from experience that on these kinds of dates, most of the time it is the big players who make the difference and that is what we want to see.”