Ray Parlour explains why Manchester United test is crucial for 'stronger' Arsenal

England's Ray Parlour

The former Gunner won the Premier League title three times and thinks Arsene Wenger's side need to get a result at Old Trafford to win it again.

Former Arsenal midfielder Ray Parlour has told Sky Sports that this weekend's clash with Manchester United is incredibly important if The Gunners hope to win the Premier League.

Parlour was part of three title-winning sides under Arsene Wenger, including the 2002 triumph which saw Arsenal beat United at Old Trafford to secure the crown from The Red Devils.

The late 90s and early 00s was a constant clash between United and Arsenal for supremacy but Parlour's personal high point came in 2004 when he was part of 'The Invincibles' side to storm to the Premier League title unbeaten.

That was the last time Arsenal came away with England's biggest prize and ahead of Saturday's showdown against nemesis Jose Mourinho, Wenger's side sit just two points off Liverpool in top spot.

Arsenal InvinciblesArsenal Invincibles

Their opponents however are struggling in seventh place so far, failing to hit top gear this season, but a high-profile meeting with their old title rivals would help kickstart United's season and provide a dent in the ambitions of Arsenal, who Parlour says must leave Old Trafford with at least a point to be taken seriously as a title contenders.

"I look at Arsenal now and think they're a lot stronger," Parlour told Sky Sports News HQ. "People were always waiting for that big centre forward, but the key signings for me were [Shkodran] Mustafi and [Granit] Xhaka.

"Those two down the spine have been very strong, especially Mustafi who's come in next to Koscielny at the back.

"It's such a competitive league and this will be a big test. If they're going to win the title, they have to go to places like Old Trafford and try to get a result."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger with Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Kieran GibbsArsenal manager Arsene Wenger with Arsenal's Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Kieran Gibbs

Arsenal tasted defeat in this fixture last season when Marcus Rashford emerged from nowhere to score twice to help Louis van Gaal's side to a 3-2 win.

This time around The Gunners go to Old Trafford as favourites for the three points with their only defeat of the campaign coming on the opening day against Liverpool.

Not all eyes will be on the pitch however, with Mourinho and Wenger's frosty relationship throwing up controversy in recent years and providing the catalyst for sparks to fly in Manchester on Saturday lunchtime.

Manchester United's Paul Pogba celebrates scoring their first goal with Michael CarrickManchester United's Paul Pogba celebrates scoring their first goal with Michael Carrick

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