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Welbeck in, 23-year-old starts in midfield: My Arsenal XI vs Chelsea
Our Premier League ‘title challenge’ rests on Saturday’s trip to Stamford Bridge to take on run-away leaders Chelsea. This is the team I’d like to see Arsene Wenger go with….
I’ve seen some fans calling for Cech to be dropped again after he conceded twice against Watford on Tuesday but I personally don’t think he was at fault for either as the first was a deflection and he actually did well to deny Capoue before the rebound fell kindly to Denney. So the Czech star should keep his place ahead of Ospina.
Defence: Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Monreal
The defence was shocking for the opening 20 minutes against Watford so they’ll need to improve drastically on Saturday. Bellerin was rested and the gamble back-fired as Gabriel was poor at right-back so the Spaniard is certain to get a recall this weekend.
Obviously Koscielny should keep his place and we better hope that Mustafi remembers how to defend properly again after his gaff for the Watford second goal. The German has been excellent for the most part since joining the club so hopefully it was an isolated incident.
Monreal should keep his place ahead of Gibbs at left-back.
Midfield: Ox-Chamberlain, Coquelin
We are heading in to the biggest game of the season in the midst of a midfield crisis. Ramsey is out after picking up a calf injury in midweek and I think it will be a blessing in disguise as he’s been extremely poor lately and he just doesn’t seem to fit in to this team anymore.
Thankfully Oxlade-Chamberlain is expected to recover from a minor knee problem that left him limping during the closing stages on Tuesday and he will have to start alongside Coquelin because he’s the only other midfielder we have available.
That’s because Xhaka is still suspended, Cazorla is still unavailable due to his on-going Achilles problems while Elneny has picked up a calf problem while away at the AFCON.
Attack: Walcott, Ozil, Sanchez, Welbeck
Welbeck was rested against Watford after making his first start of the season last weekend. The boss came in for some stick for this decision but I think he was right as the last thing we want is to push Welbeck too much, too soon.
However, I’d start him up front against Chelsea and his return will be well timed as Giroud is struggling with an ankle injury. Sanchez should therefore start on the left with Ozil in the No.10 role. I hope we see the real Mesut turn up on Saturday as he was poor in midweek.
I think we’ll see Walcott come back in to the side after he too was named on the bench in midweek as Wenger says he’s still not 100% after five weeks out. Iwobi will be the unfortunate one to make way.
This would be my line-up: