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Preview: PSG v Arsenal, team news, line-up & prediction
Arsenal get their Champions League campaign underway tonight when we take on Paris Saint-Germain at the Parc des Paris.
We’ve recovered from a poor start to the new Premier League season with back-to-back victories over Watford and Southampton to leave us seventh in the table on 7 points.
However, we’re going to have to play much better than we did at the weekend if we want to take all three points in Paris this evening as we were lackluster for long periods against the Saints on Saturday.
PSG haven’t had the best of starts by their high standards after taking 7 points from a possible 12 to leave them seventh in the Ligue 1 table and they have plenty of injury problems so this could be a decent time to play them.
We’ve been mediocre in the Champions League recently having crashed out at the last 16 stage for the last six consecutive seasons so it’s time to break that run and really contend this year.
In order to do that, we need to win the group and hopefully avoid the annual meeting with Barcelona or Bayern Munich in the knockout stages so we need a positive result tonight.
We’ve been handed a huge boost with the news that Koscielny is available after he suffered a nasty eye injury against Southampton at the weekend.
Ramsey is back in light training but isn’t considered match fit yet so has stayed back in north London to continue to work on his fitness following a month out with a hamstring injury.
Giroud is pushing to make his first start of the season and could replace Perez up front while Sanchez and Xhaka should get recalls after being rested on Saturday.
Gabriel is back in training but isn’t expected to feature this evening meaning Rob Holding will continue to play back-up in the middle of defence.
PSG have fitness doubts over Thiago Silva, Maxwell and Serge Aurier but all three have been included in the squad following injury. Javier Pastore misses out though.
The back five picks itself but I’d like to see Elneny alongside Xhaka in midfield as his high energy approach would be useful against a talented PSG side. I’d keep Walcott on the wing with Sanchez and Ozil also supporting Giroud in attack.
PSG: Trapp; Maxwell, Marquinhos, Silva, Aurier; Krychowiak, Matuidi, Verratti; Moura, Cavani, Di Maria.
PSG obviously have a very impressive midfield and attack with the likes of Cavani and Di Maria capable of moments of magic. However, their defence is suspect with Maxwell, Silva and Aurier all not fully fit so we should cause them plenty of problems ourselves. My head says a draw is likely but my heart fancies us to edge it. PSG 1-2 Arsenal