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Wenger rocked by injury blow, 22-year-old to start: Likely Arsenal XI vs Man City

By on November 5, 2017

sead-kolasinac-arsenal

Arsenal face a daunting trip to the Etihad Stadium as we take on run-away leaders Manchester City this afternoon. Here is the team I expect to see Arsene Wenger select….

Goalkeeper: Cech

Cech was rested in midweek with Macey impressing during the 0-0 draw with Red Star Belgrade but our No.1 is certain to come back in today. Ospina is still out with a groin injury so Macey should be on the bench.

Defence: Koscielny, Mertesacker, Holding

Unfortunately, it looks like we’re going to be forced in to a shake-up at the back with Monreal needing to move out to the wing [more on that later]. That leaves a huge void to be filled and while I’ve seen some suggest Debuchy could start, I’d prefer to see 22-year-old Holding given a chance.

Mertesacker will no doubt start in the middle of defence and he’ll need to use all his years of experience to cope with the pace of Sane/Aguero/Jesus/Sterling today.

Koscielny will be recalled after being rested in midweek so the likes of Debuchy and Elneny are set to make way while Mustafi and Chambers are still unavailable for selection.

Midfield: Bellerin, Ramsey, Xhaka, Monreal

So, the big news is that Kolasinac is set to miss out after failing to train yesterday. The left-back initially returned to training on Friday after picking up a hip injury against Swansea but he must have aggravated it as there was no sign of him at London Colney on Saturday.

That means Monreal is expected to be moved out to the left wing-back position. Some fans are calling for Iwobi or even Maitland-Niles to play on the left so Monreal can stay in defence but I think that would be a huge risk.

Ramsey and Xhaka will be recalled after being given the night off on Thursday while Bellerin will no doubt start again on the right with Willock, Nelson, Maitland-Niles and Coquelin making way.

Attack: Ozil, Sanchez, Lacazette

Our big-guns were all rested against Red Star Belgrade so I expect we’ll see Ozil, Sanchez and Lacazette all recalled today. We need a big performance from our front three as no doubt we’ll be under pressure for long periods so it’s important they all work hard defensively and cause problems when we get on the ball.

Once again, Walcott and Giroud didn’t take their chances to impress in midweek so they will drop to the bench today.

This is the team I expect we’ll see, if Kola is ruled out:

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One Comment

  1. Segun Law

    November 5, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    For the size of this game, Holding won’t be starting, that’s for sure. So, we will consider one of two options: Play in a 4-4-2 (Mert, Kos at CB; Bellerin, Monreal at full back; Xhaka, Elneny, Ramsey in central midfield; Ozil, Lacazette, Alexis up front.); or bring in Debuchy at right side of CB, to make a 3 at the back with Mertesacker and Koscielny. 3 at the back and Ramsey Xhaka alone in midfield will leave us a bit too open for the strengths of City in the middle. We have to have a plan to fight them in midfield.

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