Ahead of their showdown on Wednesday, Goal rank the 10 greatest African players to play for either the Gunners or the Citizens
The AS Roma star struggled at Arsenal and left complaining that he was never properly given the opportunity to impress by Arsene Wenger.
Currently back in Italy with Parma after a spell with Hebei China Fortune in the CSL, he remains a menacing presence in wide areas and was influential as the Cote d’Ivoire won the Afcon title in 2015, being named in the team of the tournament.
#9 Alex Song
His time at Barcelona may have ended in disappointment, but the ex-Cameroon midfielder demonstrated his class during a long spell with Arsenal.
He transferred to Catalonia at the height of his powers and despite a considerable honours haul, he never quite replicated the fine form of that sterling final campaign at the Emirates Stadium.
#8 Emmanuel Adebayor
Adebayor has often been a polarising figure in world football.
It seems that, as soon as he starts to get the fans on his side, he does something that conjures up the ire of his supporters.
He has represented a host of high-profile clubs, including Spanish giants Real Madrid and Arsenal, among others, and also departed the Gunners for Manchester City.
He moved to City in 2009 for a fee believed to be about £25 million, making him, at one point, Africa’s most expensive player. He remained at the Etihad until 2011, when he joined Tottenham Hotspur.
#7 Riyad Mahrez
One of only two African players to have won the Premier League title with two different clubs, Mahrez was a key figure in Leicester City’s miracle triumph of 2016, winning the PFA Player of the Year award in the process.
He eventually got his move away from the Foxes in 2018, signing for City and going on to win a hatful of honours in his maiden season at the club.
Admittedly, he didn’t always appear to have the faith of Pep Guardiola during that maiden campaign, but the African Cup of Nations champion has already had a hand in 15 goals already so far this season.
#6 Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang has been a model of goalscoring consistency since arriving at Arsenal from Borussia Dortmund in 2018.
In Germany, he was named Bundesliga Player of the Year and knocked Robert Lewandowski off his perch to win the Golden Boot in the 2016-17 season, with a superb return of 31 goals.
English defences have fared little better than their German counterparts when it comes to keeping Auba at bay, and at the time of writing, the reigning Premier League top scorer has 49 goals in 75 Premier League outings for the Gunners.
He’s unlikely to win anything in North London, but no one can deny his goalscoring impact in England.
A key figure in Arsenal’s Invincibles side of the middle of the last decade, Lauren arguably never truly got the credit he deserved for his contribution.
He began his career as a winger but was converted to right-back in North London and won the double in 2002. With Cameroon, he won two Afcon titles, and the Olympic gold in 2000.
#4 Kolo Toure
Toure was a part of the ‘Invincibles’ squad that went on a 49-game unbeaten run in the 2003-04 season.
He was a solid and commanding presence in the heart of defence, and, in 2009, moved to Manchester City at the height of his powers, spending four years there.
He was one of the first pieces that were put together to form the dominant City outfit to which we have become accustomed.
The ex-centre-back is currently Leicester City assistant manager under his ex-Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers.
#3 Nwankwo Kanu
The two-time African Footballer of the Year overcame adversity early in his career to become a fan favorite at Arsenal, arguably Nigeria’s greatest player of all time and one of the most decorated Africans in history.
Few could match the technique and unpredictability which made him a hero in North London, and he won two titles and two FA Cups with the Gunners.
#2 George Weah
Weah has done what most African players can only dream of: win the Ballon d’Or.
The three-time African Footballer of the Year, nicknamed King George, moved to Manchester City when he was 34 years old, after a loan spell at Chelsea.
The Liberian joined the Citizens towards the end of an illustrious career in world football, and was unable to produce the goods, leaving the club only three months after joining.
He made seven appearances for the Manchester club, scoring only one goal.
#1 Yaya Toure
Toure is one of the most decorated Africans to have graced the game in recent memory, having won everything from the Uefa Champions League to domestic titles in Spain and England, as well as continental honors with Ivory Coast.
He boasts a CV that speaks volumes of his talent and he is undoubtedly one of Manchester City’s best signings ever.
After initially being overlooked by Guardiola in the Premier League, he fought back to recapture a key role for the Citizens.
Toure was also an African champion in 2015, and recently finished second in the inaugural African Legends Cup of Nations.