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Preview: Arsenal v Hull: duo passed fit, Welbeck to start + prediction
It’s time to get our season back on track as Arsenal welcome an in-form Hull side to the Emirates on Saturday lunchtime.
The past couple of weeks have been a disaster as consecutive defeats to Watford and Chelsea have ended any realistic hopes of winning the title as we’re now sitting fourth in the table – 12 points adrift of leaders Chelsea.
The good news is that we’re only three points from second-placed Tottenham so we could even move level with our rivals with a win tomorrow as they face a tough trip to Anfield.
However, the bad news is that sixth-placed Manchester United are now just two points behind us so we could fall out of the top four with another poor result against Hull tomorrow.
With just five points separating five teams it’s gearing up to be one of the tightest top-four races in years so it’s vital that we don’t slip-up this weekend.
Unfortunately we face a Hull side that have turned a corner following the arrival of new boss Marco Silva as they come in to the game having taken four points from Man Utd and Liverpool.
Bellerin was given the all-clear to return to full training today after being given six days off following his concussion against Chelsea last weekend.
Wenger will have to make a late decision over whether to start him against Hull but I think we’ll see the Spaniard filling the right-back position.
Lucas is also available again after missing the trip to Stamford Bridge with a minor ankle injury so he’ll give us another option in attack.
Elneny is back in contention after returning from the African Cup of Nations and his return is well timed as Ramsey remains out with a calf problem.
With Cazorla still nursing his Achilles injury and Xhaka serving the final of his four-game ban, we could certainly do with another option in the middle of the park.
Cech had another poor game last week but I still think he’s the better option ahead of Ospina – who people seem to forget also has plenty of mistakes in his locker.
I’d give Gibbs a run-out at left-back while I’d also like to see Elneny come in alongside Oxlade-Chamberlain in midfield. The Ox has done well in recent games while Coquelin has been a disaster.
I have no clue why Welbeck didn’t start last weekend so it would be criminal not to bring him in tomorrow. This would be my eleven:
Who knows what Arsenal will turn up tomorrow. It would surprise nobody if we put in another display like against Watford but equally I wouldn’t be shocked to see ‘Wengerball’ in full flow.
Let’s just hope the players respond in a positive manner and DON’T have one eye on next weeks Champions League trip to Bayern Munich. The last thing we want is the players taking Hull too lightly. I’m going to back the boys to bounce back and register a solid 2-0 win. Arsenal 2-0 Hull